AVN Book Club: Courageous Women of the Vietnam War

A Vintage Nerd Vietnam War Women in Action History Books 1960s War Book Blog Book Review Vintage Book Kathryn Atwood Chicago Review Press

The Vietnam War ended on April 30, 1975, a year before I was born. It wasn't a part of history that I naturally grew up with mainly because no one in my family fought in the war but it was something I was exposed to via television (M.A.S.H.) and film (Dogfight-1991). There is so much I didn't know about the Vietnam War but what do I know about it has always left me feeling uncomfortable, confused, and frustrated. All that changed after I read Kathryn Atwood's latest masterpiece, Courageous Women of the Vietnam War: Medics, Journalists, Survivors, and More

Atwood does what she does best, she maps out the past in a way that anyone can follow and understand and I love that about her writing style. Wars are complicated and twisted by nature and to untangle all of that in way that lays all the facts on the table and gets to the heart of the matter is a exquisite skill to have.

The Vietnam War has the longest US combat force participation that spanned 17.4 years. In that time men and women fought in a war that was not popular among the American public and faced crisis not only when they were occupying Vietnam but all across America as well. Women in particular played many different roles in this war. They were nurses, surgeonsprotestors, and journalists. And then there were the women who had children with the military making their children what the Vietnamese would call Bui-doi (dust of life) or now referred to as Amerasians.

This war has left a stain on the American psyche that I have found many people still have a difficulty explaining it or sharing their experiences about it. After two great wars, the Vietnam War left the America public strained, confused, resentful, and angry. Something I do not think that it has fully healed from.

Atwood shares stories about some incredibly brave women who had to face a war that people resented. I am one of those Americans that didn't quite understand why all this had to happen especially after all the sacrifices and loss of lives from both great wars. Why again?

Because of Atwood's amazing ability to share the lives of others, I may not still understand every nook and cranny about the war but I do have a more compassionate view on it. You can find more of Kathryn J. Atwood's books HERE and follow her on Instagram HERE.
A Vintage Nerd Vietnam War Women in Action History Books 1960s War Book Blog Book Review Vintage Book Kathryn Atwood Chicago Review Press


  1. Looks like a great read. There are so many misconceptions about the Vietnam war especially who won ..no one did. Such a waste of life and an example of why not to go to war in someone else's country .

    1. I couldn't agree more. This book clears up a lot of them and really breaks things down in a relatable and easy way. xox



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