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O'Brien, Tim [author's website]
Going After Cacciato

1978, Tim O'Brien's second novel won the National Book Award. It is the tale of a soldier who decides to run away from the Vietnam War. It is a complex book, which repays careful reading.

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback] [paperback]  [paperback] [paperback]

[A la poursuite de Cacciato]

If I Die in a Combat Zone, Box Me Up and Ship Me Home

ARMY, 3rd Platoon, A Co., 5th Batt. 46th Inf., 1969-70: O'Brien's 1973 memoir of his Vietnam service covers his tour to Vietnam as a combat infantryman with the Americal Division in the region around My Lai, from 1969-70. It is one of the earliest books about Vietnam by a combatant. It is a very clear eyed, gripping account of his war.

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback] [paperback]

[hardback]

[paperback] [paperback]

 

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Northern Lights

1975 This is Tim O'Brien's first published novel. It has just returned to print in the US for the first time since the seventies. The book is an account of two brothers in rural Minnesota. One brother returns from the war wounded, but both brothers are at loose ends and uncomfortable with each other, themselves, their lives, and their relationships, particularly with their late father.

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback] [paperback] [paperback]  [paperback]

Nuclear Age

1985.  This novel takes a look at how you would live your life if you were always cognizant of, and worried by, the threat of extinction in a nuclear war. O'Brien treats this subject very seriously, but the book is written in a comic style. 

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback] [paperback]  [paperback]

Suggested Reading The Things They Carried

1990 A gripping series of Vietnam stories gathered in a format of O'Brien's devising. It is not a collection of short stories, but it is not one story with a beginning and an ending. It is perhaps closest to listening to a soldier storyteller over a long period time. While you listen to his stories, you hear a bit of his personal life; he uses repetition of events and certain phrases to reinforce familiarity with the tales. Closing the book you believe you know the narrator very well. Attempting to further confuse fiction with non-fiction, Tim O'Brien gave his storyteller the name "Tim O'Brien."

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback]
[cliff notes]
[paperback] [paperback] [paperback]
[A propos de courage]

In the Lake of the Woods

1994 If you thought you knew "Tim O'Brien" after reading his last novel, now he tells you that it could all be illusion. The hero of this novel, John Wade, thinks he has erased his presence at the My Lai massacre. It isn't part of the stories he tells his wife or a part of his senate campaign. When the truth comes out, his wife finds out she doesn't know the man she married.

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback] [paperback] [paperback] [paperback]

[Au lac des Bois]

 

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Tomcat in Love

A comic novel about a professor out to exact revenge on his ex-wife.  Like all of his novels, this is unlike his other work in some important way.  With this novel, it is the tone that is different.  The main character is a Vietnam veteran.  A very funny book.

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[hardback]

[paperback]

[hardback]

[paperback]

[hardback]

[paperback]

[paperback]

[Matou amoureux]

 

  The Putt at the End of the World 

O'Brien joins other authors, such as Dave Barry, to write a comic golf thriller.  Each author wrote one chapter, O'Brien's chapter is "Tight Lies" and it is 19 pages long.  The book was edited by Les Standiford.  [hardback]


American Fiction, Volume Seven: The Best Unpublished Short Stories by Emerging Writers
Tim O'Brien, Michael White, Alan Davis, editors

  [paperback]     germany.gif (1355 bytes) [hardback from Germany] 


O'Hara, John Patrick
How It Was : A Vietnam Story

Memoir. 2001

United States United Kingdom Germany France

[paperback]

     

O'Nan, Stewart [author's website]
The Vietnam Reader : The Definitive Collection of American Fiction and Nonfiction on the War

Here is an anthology that the author put together after seeing a need for it.  It is selections from, in the editor's words, "the best and best known works."  It is a nice distinction that shows the care that went into this collection.  Whether you are trying to teach the Vietnam War, study it, or just see what you might have missed that is considered important, you will find this book interesting and useful.  Books, films, music, and poems are grouped according to type; e.g., "Homecoming," or "Early Work."  A short commentary is provided before each section.  A 724 page paperback with a price of $12.76 (Amazon's price) is also nice to see.  [paperback]   Books from the UK![paperback from the UK] 

Names of the Dead

O'Nan's engrossing novel about a medic and his return home.  Over a decade later, a family man and regular guy with steady employment, he is still trying to get back. [paperback]  

The following novels are not about Vietnam:

A World Away

O'Nan's newest novel.  A well reviewed story about WWII and the home front. [hardback]   Books from the UK![hardback from the UK]

Snow Angels

[paperback]  Books from the UK![paperback from the UK]

The Speed Queen

[paperback]  [hardback]   Books from the UK![paperback from the UK]  


O'Neill, Susan Kramer 
Don't Mean Nothing : Short Stories of Vietnam
 (audio interview)

Fiction by a nurse who served 69-70 at Phu Bai, Chu Lai and Cu Chi.  " . . . a bloodstained Alice stepping through the looking glass."  This is an excellent collection of short stories.  The author says " . . . the tragedy, the irony, the death, the sex, drugs, rock-and-roll, and yes, that gallows humor peculiar to survival in war -- is just a bit of what the Vietnam War really did mean."

I would add that the stories are very well told and , like all good war stories, will remain with you.  

United States United Kingdom Germany France
[paperback]
[hardback]
     

Olson, James S.
Dictionary of the Vietnam War

[hardback]


Olson, James S. and Randy Roberts
"My Lai : A Brief History With Documents" (The Bedford Series in History)

Dec 1997  [hardback]


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What does Suggested Reading mean?  It is just my very subjective list of the top ten books to read about the Vietnam War.  I list them here.

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Still can't find it?  Try Battleground Books
Used books and scarce first editions at reasonable prices.

My Vietnam Related Websites:
button Women in Vietnam ~ Read about ALL the women who served . . .
The Irish on the Wall ~ An effort to locate the Irish who died in Vietnam
button Tim O'Brien's Home Page ~ National Book Award Winner and Americal Vet

button Emily's Poetry ~ By a Red Cross Donut Dolly
button Shrapnel in the Heart ~ The most moving book you will read on Vietnam
button All About Vietnam    ~ An annotated bibliography of books about Vietnam for sale thru Amazon Worldwide!
button Battle Dressing ~
button Project Hearts and Minds ~ Help put Viet Nam back together
button Photos from a Holts' Military History Tour ~ My trip to Vietnam, February 1998

My Other Websites:
Maybe Later . . . ~ My Creative Nonfiction
Irish in Korea ~ Irish men and women who gave their lives in the Korean War
Literature of the Korean War ~ Don't let the literature be forgotten
Samuel Pepys ~ One of my favorite authors
Chicago Theatre Z - A ~ This is the best theater town in the country!
Soccer Literature ~ I'm a fan and I read
O'Leary Lantern ~ Fire! Fire! Fire!
Gil Thorp ~ THE Coach (apologies to The General!)
Poetry of the First World War ~ Owen, Hardy and others
Chi-COW-go ~ Cowz plus Commentary (this used to be a cow town)
Graham Fulton, Scottish Poet ~ Charles Manson Auditions for the Monkees

Other Important Websites:
The Truth About Caroline ~ a  really good Young Adult book by my niece, Stacey M. Lane Grosh
Remember Oklahoma City ~  The Civil Service and Military will NEVER forget!

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Page last updated July 18, 2007

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