Grey Feathers: Led by Love of Country
Grey Feathers shows readers what it was like to be a soldier in Vietnam between 1967 and 1970. The aim of the book is to describe combat situations and show how soldiers fought bravely under challenging conditions. The author provides an introduction to the conflict and good descriptions of military organization, which is helpful for readers like me who have no military experience.
The first part of this book looks at the operations that occurred to try and push back the North Vietnamese Army and gives detailed accounts of the many actions undertaken by military units and their soldiers. But about halfway through, I wished that the author had included and incorporated more personal details and stories about individual soldiers, either through memories or research. It simply would have been more meaningful if the reader got a sense of the men, their characters, their personalities, and why the author felt that they had earned their grey feather in a particular situation.
I did feel that the second part of the book included more of these personal accounts. For example, the story of Phung Van Thinh, the captured North Vietnamese soldier who helped US soldiers, and the story that recounted Viper and Cookie’s search for a snake in the bunker, which made me feel closer to the characters and the story as a whole. Toward the end of the book, the author gives a memorable account of his own story and shares his experiences during and after the war. I feel that this account should have come during an introduction or been incorporated throughout the discussion of operations to give me a real connection to the author and make the book more dynamic.
I also think this book would have benefitted from some professional editing to address some missing words, typos, and awkward sentences, sometimes caused by switching from the past tense to the present, even though the events have already taken place. This was annoying and interrupted the reading flow. I also wondered why the author wrote about himself in the third person when describing how he led his platoon in battle. A first-person account would have been more engaging. Therefore, I was pleased that he changed to the first person perspective later in the book.
Overall, I enjoyed hearing about Daniel DeWald’s experience during and after the war, although I wish this book had included more personal and engaging details about the brave men he felt had earned grey feathers.
|Author||Daniel M. DeWald|
|Page Count||228 pages|
|Amazon||Buy this Book|