genre: literary fiction
synopsis: a lieutenant in the united states army experiences combat in vietnam
setting: vietnam, 1960s
what i liked: marlantes fought in vietnam himself, so there’s an authenticity to his description that i’m not sure would be there otherwise. i felt like i was in the jungle myself, just from reading, and i think that’s sense of transportation is particularly difficult to do when the setting is war.
trigger warnings: this book is graphic in pretty much every way you could imagine: language, ethnic and racial slurs, violence, gruesome injuries
final thoughts: i don’t know anyone to whom i would recommend this book, just because it’ll only appeal to a certain subset of readers and i don’t know anybody who would fit in that category. i liked it because i enjoy literary fiction and military history (so, betsy, if you’re reading this post, maybe you would like it?). if you’re looking for a book set during the vietnam war that’s not as heavy (and similar to unbroken by laura hillenbrand), read the book i chose for the letter L.