4 out of 4 stars
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“I miss war.”
This opening statement is peculiar and the most unlikely confession anyone could expect to find on the first page of a book. It captures your attention, sending you on a quest to discover why anyone would confess to liking what many would run away from. Currently, there is a buzzword that has been making rounds on social media in my country. The Swahili word is huezielewa, which loosely translates to you cannot comprehend. I have not found the perfect word to describe Either Peace or War by Graydon McWilliams; you can only fully appreciate this book after reading it.
After a punchy opening, I wondered whether the author would maintain the same captivating narration technique to the end. Often, most begin well, but midway the style changes and becomes humdrum. I'm glad Graydon did exceptionally well here. One of the aspects I enjoyed most about the book is how the author reveals what is treated as either right or wrong in the military. Often, he disclosed pieces of advice from his colleagues and seniors that revealed nothing is as as it appears or sounds superficially. For instance, they are warned against being judgmental. Aren't we often guilty of judging others for the impromptu decisions they made thinking we could have done better?
In Either Peace or War, Seargent Graydon employs a stern, solemn tone, which may sound unpleasant until one begins to understand that the things he is describing can be comprehended by none other than himself. His deployment was a journey filled with many actors, but each had their own experience and distinct tales. Without overemphasizing this truth, he proves that every soldier’s story is different. Eventually, I came to appreciate that the thrills and horrors of war can only be understood by those who have been on the battlefield.
Every aspect of this remarkable book was excellent. I disliked nothing about it. First, Graydon does not shy away from speaking his mind. Consequently, the reader acquires some food for thought. You are not just a consumer of knowledge, but also an active participant in cogitating on issues like love for humanity and its consequences, death, and much more. Second, every moment is unique; night or day, there are no breaks, and no one can tell what could happen next.
After reading this book, you will not view things from the same perspective. For the absorbing narration, thought-provocative nature, and many other positive qualities, I rate the book four out of four stars. It is an action-packed book with lots of history that will keep you enlightened and informed, making you want to know more. Every ardent reader of books packed with adventure and action will cherish reading this book. It will appeal most to those who would like to look at the life of a soldier during deployment and beyond.
Either Peace or War
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