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Gardens of Stone

4.06  ·  Rating Details ·  100 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
A novel about the Vietnam War in the United States. Set in Washington D.C. it follows two soldiers assigned the U.S. Army 3rd Infantry. The "Old Guard". The ceremonial unit tasked with guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and performing burials at Arlington National Cementary. The novel follows two soldiers. A veteran sergeant who has survived two wars and a young idea ...more
Paperback, 448 pages
Published April 1st 1984 by Tor Books (first published January 1st 1983)
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Nov 17, 2012 Travis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I actually read this book during the Desert Shield phase of the Gulf War in 1991. It was a very sobering read; this book made the rounds of my whole platoon. I gave it one of the highest marks of respect I have for a book or a movie; I have never re-read it. If I really like a book, I won't re-read it because I want to remember the emotions and thoughts the book gave me. Same for movies; if I really like a movie, I will only watch it once. I saw the movie of this book, and I won't watch it again ...more
David Ward
Gardens of Stone by Nicholas Proffitt (Carroll and Graf Publishers 1987)(Fiction). Set during the Viet Nam era, a young soldier is assigned to the U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Unit, which is a ceremonial outfit known as “The Old Guard” that guards the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington, Virginia and which provides the Honor Guard for burials at Arlington. The story centers around the young soldier’s desire to be in battle in Viet Nam and the influence of his mentor in the Old Guard, an old milit ...more
Jun 27, 2014 Lauren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Purchased in Vietnam upon realizing my knowledge of the war was lacking. This didn't help much, but the characters were vivid and it was an interesting perspective.
Chrystine Collins-blums
This story touched me to the core. Yes, it is slightly cliched; the enlisted man's son marrying the officer's daughter, the couple who hate each other winding up madly in love (in a couple instances), the unit screw up becoming a hero - but despite all this I still love this book. I think every soldier wants to be like Jackie and have leadership like he had. I don't want to give away too much but read the book. Get past a few of the cliches - it's worth it. I joined the military at 17 and retire ...more
Jul 07, 2015 Lysergius rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A compelling evocation of the horrors of war.
Apr 27, 2009 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A well written and touching story set in a time many would like now to forget. It brings home many of the arguments that we are still having to this day in terms of the army and its role in our national consciousness.
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Nicholas Proffitt's novel Gardens of Stone was based on his service as a member of the 3rd U.S. Infantry detachment detailed to serve as the honor guard at Arlington National Cemetery outside Washington, D.C. After his military service, he graduated from the University of Arizona with a journalism degree and went to work for Newsweek as a reporter, subsequently working in Vietnam and Lebanon. He e ...more
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