Red, White, and True: Stories from Veterans and Families, World War II to Present

By Benko, Allyson D. | Military Review, May-June 2016 | Go to article overview

Red, White, and True: Stories from Veterans and Families, World War II to Present


Benko, Allyson D., Military Review


RED, WHITE, AND TRUE: Stories from Veterans and Families, World War II to Present

Edited by Tracy Crow, Potomac Books, Dulles, Virginia, 2014, 288 pages

As military members return from war, the images and emotions from their experiences follow them home, influencing their lives and the lives of those around them forever. The book Red, White, and True is an anthology of thirty-two selected writings from various authors about the lasting impacts of military service; it offers diverse perspectives from veterans, military spouses, and grown children of veterans about the struggles and triumphs of war and how it affected their lives. Tracy Crow is well qualified as the editor. She personally served ten years as an officer in the Marine Corps and received both her bachelor's and master's degrees in creative writing. Several of the individual authors, who are not military veterans themselves, are college writing faculty and students in creative writing programs. While each author's experience is different, the theme throughout this book is the human heart in conflict with itself.

The book starts with an introduction explaining the editor's inspiration for developing this anthology. When she realized everyone has a heart that at some point has wrestled with conflict, she set out to collect true stories that accurately portray American military war experiences. Each story recounts a unique experience within the timeframe from World War II through present day Iraq and Afghanistan. The individual stories of pain and struggle illustrate the damage that war rends and describes its impact throughout society. It is not a warmongering, flag-waving, mission-accomplished collection. These stories illuminate the emotional experience of war. …

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