4 out of 4 stars
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They Leave As Boys And They Return As Men by Jerry Fulkerson is a non-fiction book during the Vietnam War. I'm rereviewing a book I had already read. To write the first review, I had read a PDF version. Now to do this review, I read a Kindle version. Harlan Powers is a troubled boy who was born in Oklahoma. After causing several problems, mainly because of alcohol and having received a couple of warnings from the Sheriff, he has to decide whether to join the army or be arrested. Not wanting to participate in land battles (and seduced by the prospect of working on television and radio), Harlan decides to go to the Airborne Radar School for nine months.
As the book progresses, the reader will discover that the protagonist will participate in the Vietnam War more actively than expected. Despite the war scenario, love relationships gain predominance in this book. Harlan has always been in love with Susie, but as her father was expecting a better suitor, he ended up having relationships with several other women. However, most of the protagonist's relationships with women are purely sexual.
What I liked most about this book was how Jerry Fulkerson managed to write such an easy-to-read and funny book on a subject as tragic as war. There are countless love affairs, jokes, and comic events throughout the book. As much as some situations are considered sexist today, the author simply portrayed events as they happened at the time.
There's nothing negative to mention here. I found only three grammatical errors in the Kindle edition. However, the number of profane words is excessive. This is undoubtedly one of the most profane books I have ever read in my life. The sexual content is equally extreme: there is a relationship between soldiers and prostitutes and even "threesomes." It was utterly excessive, and at times I wondered if the author was looking to create some kind of Fifty Shades of Grey during the Vietnam War.
Overall, I rate They Leave As Boys And They Return As Men four out of four stars. I had to deduct one star due to the grammatical errors in the first review, but I only found three grammatical errors in the Kindle edition. Therefore, this work is professionally edited. The book is easy to read and tells exciting details about the Vietnam War in a different light. There is, however, a lot of content that may shock the modern reader. The racial slur "gook" appears more than 20 times. There are also a large number of swear words and sexual scenes.
I recommend this book for men (and probably some women who are interested in war-related topics) over 18 who would like to read an account of the Vietnam War in a different light. Sensitive readers who don't like what was mentioned above should avoid this book.
They Leave As Boys And They Return As Men
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