Dog Tags: The History, Personal Stories, Cultural Impact, and Future of Military Identification

Title: Dog Tags: The History, Personal Stories, Cultural Impact, and Future of Military Identification
Author: Ginger Cuculo
Genre: Non-Fiction & Fiction
Reviewer: Joyce Faulkner

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0983305706

The 100 year anniversary of the official use of American personal identity tags, affectionately known as Dog Tags, recently passed without fanfare. We are currently in a war where the Dog Tag is once again a highly personal item to warriors of every service and to their families as well. Every Dog Tag carries its own human interest story. Receiving it, hanging it around the neck, and feeling it is a silent statement of commitment. The tag itself individualizes the human being who wears it within a huge and faceless organization. While the armed forces demand obedience and duty to a higher cause, the Dog Tag, hanging under each service member's shirt and close to their chest, becomes a part of them. It brings comfort to that fear of every soldier facing death: I do not want to be forgotten; I will not become an "unknown."

Understanding and sharing the history of Dog Tags and their deeply personal meaning in today's world is at the core of this book.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Cuculo, Ginger

Mining Sacred Ground

Title: Mining Sacred Ground
Author: David E. Knop
Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Thriller
Reviewer, Marcia J Sargent


Ancestral spirits demand that Marine veteran Peter Romero protect the secrecy of a sacred burial ground, and the world becomes a stranger place than he’d ever understood. He is pitted against a psychotic anthropology professor in a life-and-death struggle through the hills, arroyos, and caves of central Arizona, and into another world.

When Romero’s cousin is murdered, the former military policeman is astonished that the local sheriff shows no enthusiasm for solving the crime. He is forced to recognize that, after a military career, greater danger lies ahead in his civilian life.

Romero takes up arms to mete out his own justice, but he must decide if he belongs to the world he sees, or to a spirit world in which he discovers the strength of his ancestors. He makes their power a part of his being. As a spirit warrior, Romero battles self-doubt, his wife’s threats of divorce, and local law enforcement who plan his murder. He confronts an armed gang bent on revenge, skirts federal agents intent on stopping him, and evades the deadly fire of a deranged sniper.

Aided by a wise tribal elder, Romero uncovers a tangle of clues that link his cousin’s death to trafficking in ancient treasures and a deadly conspiracy that centers him in their crosshairs. Romero combines his combat experience and the fighting skills of his ancestors to dispatch his enemies and protect an ancient secret.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Knop, David E.


Title: Mischief
Author: Will McIlroy
Genre: Fiction, Historical, Thriller
Reviewer: Joyce Faulkner

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): B005E070CC

A modern take on classic espionage.

At the start of World War II a British battleship mysteriously explodes at anchor inside a well defended home port. Given a final chance to resurrect a failed career, Intelligence Officer Richard Kast uncovers troubling evidence of espionage but his superiors whitewash the investigation and the attacks continue.

Without friends and unable to trust colleagues, Kast's pursuit of an elusive and unseen enemy becomes intensely personal, a jaded ex-boxer's stubborn physicality and resolve against the beguiling acumen and mischief of a master German spy in a shifting, deadly duel which weaves science, theater and early BBC television around real events. At stake, disclosure of illegal aid agreements between Churchill and FDR which threaten America's entry into the war and possession of a new device which revolutionizes radar and shifts the strategic balance of the war.

Similar societal outcasts, one man seeks redemption and the other retribution. Both alternate between hunter and hunted. Neither knows or expects quarter.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
McIlroy, Will