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...and a hard rain fell: A GI's True Story of the War in Vietnam

af John Ketwig

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1526136,074 (3.5)Ingen
A classic, must-read Vietnam war memoir The classic Vietnam war memoir, ...and a hard rain fell is the unforgettable story of a veteran's rage and the unflinching portrait of a young soldier's odyssey from the roads of upstate New York to the jungles of Vietnam. Updated for its 20th anniversary with a new afterword on the Iraq War and its parallels to Vietnam, John Ketwig's message is as relevant today as it was twenty years ago. "A magnetic, bloody, moving, and worm's-eye view of soldiering in Vietnam, an account that is from the first page to last a wound that can never heal. A searing gift to his country."--Kirkus Reviews "Solidly effective. He describes with ingenuous energy and authentic language that time and place."--Library Journal "Perhaps as evocative of that awful time in Vietnam as the great fictions...a wild surreal account, at its best as powerful as Celine's darkling writing of World War One."--Washington Post… (mere)
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Viser 1-5 af 6 (næste | vis alle)
Book seems false all the way thru, I was over in the Far East from 1961 to 63, and I can remember a few moment a a time but few in any detail. In reading back in my letters to my wife, I wrote of things and actions but not of feelings. ( )
  busterrll | Mar 21, 2020 |
Review: …And a hard rain fell by John Ketwig.

A GI’s experience of the war in Vietnam. Every person who served in Vietnam has their own traumatizing story to tell. Many people have put this author down and claim he is a whiner. I was only about ten when the war in Vietnam was going on and I have heard many stories some worst then others so why condemn this one soldier for his two years he gave to his Country. Why not read his accounts, even if some are flawed? He saw it the way it was to him. Other authors and Vietnam Vets have documented well the haze of depersonalization that characterized the U.S. Military in the middle 1960s. The trauma of such transformation is hard to understand unless one has “been there, done that“.

Ketwig was in a stage of confusion when he signed up for another year in Thailand. He wanted to go home but fear at that time held him back. He felt another year was a good choice for him. It became therapeutic for him and allowed him to shut his demons away without confronting them at that time. Then the day came when he goes home to suffer the dislocation common to many Vietnam Vets. In time he makes a life, but his demons never rest. At least not until he begins to tap this story out painfully, page by page…..

I was intrigued, interested and curious to read about the two years John Ketwig spent in Southeast Asia. It is a story of one man’s war. It’s a valuable recollection of what war does to human beings. This story is even more critical today, as Iraq and Afghanistan blaze across our national consciousness. This book was well written and should not be downsized.

A statement in the book that stays with me: Is a human being really in control of his/her own destiny? Were we victors, or victims? What is a person’s duty to his Country? To his/her God? To his/her fellow person? Which has priority? It is difficult to agree upon the answers to those questions; it was more difficult in Vietnam. The average age of the American fighting person in The Nam War was nineteen. The average age of the American fighting person in World War II was twenty-six. A lot of persons spent a year in Nam and came home and couldn’t legally drink a beer. We debate teenage drinking, teenage voting, and teenage marriage. Vietnam haunts America. When will we debate teenage war?
( )
  Juan-banjo | May 31, 2016 |
this book was mostly just sad. war does horrible things to people on all sides.

i liked how the author was just honest about what he felt while he was in vietnam. the way he was trained and treated in the army completely desensitized him to all this violence and he did things and witnessed things that were so horrible that looking back he doesn't know how he did it all. but he couldn't think of how to do differently at the time.

he says at the begininng that he wrote this book because he wanted to understand what happened to him in vietnam and he wanted to be able to explain it to his wife and children. the book read very much like that. sometimes it just went on a little to long about things, which i'm sure was just part of the cathartic experience of the author.

overall, i'm glad i read the book, even though it was quite depressing. ( )
  klburnside | Aug 11, 2015 |
An absolutely searing and visceral account of one young mans war in Vietnam and its after effects on his life. At times extremely hard to read, making one ask many questions that have no answers, chiefly among them "Why?". I laughed, I wept, I squirmed, the author has a gift and hits all of ones emotions. If you read only one book about Vietnam...read this one. ( )
  Luftwaffe_Flak | Feb 7, 2014 |
A very powerful book, especially for those of us who faced the draft and Vietnam in the late sixties. Ketwig was sent to Vietnam where he faced unimaginable horrors. He rails against the army, as did most draftees, who became the "expendables" while the "lifers" stayed in their air-conditioned bunkers behind the lines and collected medals for themselves.

He "volunteers" for a second year to guarantee a billet in Thailand rather than return home because he doesn't think he can explain his 370 days in The Nam. While there he is recognized as a first-rate welder and is airlifted to somewhere classified -- obviously Laos, where our government assured us we were not -- to do some welds on an artillery battery that was shelling North Vietnam.

The section after he returned home feels a little hurried and uneven, almost as if he couldn't wait to get it out. His data regarding the effects of Vietnam on his fellow soldiers are nothing short of frightening. The Air Force "Ranch Hand" report found that mortality in children of Vietnam vets before 28 days was three times that of the population unexposed to Agent Orange. But of course the report said they would not hesitate to use it again.

Prophetically, while in Thailand he has dinner with a Japanese businessman(remember this is 1967) who says the new battlefield will be the marketplace. "War is too expensive." Obviously, we in America haven't been listening.

A must read ( )
  ecw0647 | Sep 30, 2013 |
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A classic, must-read Vietnam war memoir The classic Vietnam war memoir, ...and a hard rain fell is the unforgettable story of a veteran's rage and the unflinching portrait of a young soldier's odyssey from the roads of upstate New York to the jungles of Vietnam. Updated for its 20th anniversary with a new afterword on the Iraq War and its parallels to Vietnam, John Ketwig's message is as relevant today as it was twenty years ago. "A magnetic, bloody, moving, and worm's-eye view of soldiering in Vietnam, an account that is from the first page to last a wound that can never heal. A searing gift to his country."--Kirkus Reviews "Solidly effective. He describes with ingenuous energy and authentic language that time and place."--Library Journal "Perhaps as evocative of that awful time in Vietnam as the great fictions...a wild surreal account, at its best as powerful as Celine's darkling writing of World War One."--Washington Post

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