Max's Reviews > Helmet for My Pillow

Helmet for My Pillow by Robert Leckie
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Nov 17, 10

Read in September, 2010

A very interesting book about someone who wouldn't be considered a "model" soldier. He signed up for the marines after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and began combat in the Pacific theater. From the beginning in boot camp you can tell he has a penchant for trouble, but this is the kind of guy who wants to get into trouble -- he's just a boundary tester.

He doesn't discuss World War II in great depth, almost as if he doesn't want you to know the worst details. He rarely mentions names and uses nicknames everywhere. His commentary on his life of a soldier is astoundinge: he ends up in the brig several times, has interesting plots to steal food, ends up with a treasure trove of cigars, talks his way onto a Navy ship, his disdain for the authority of officers is always present, etc.

His time on Australia is almost surreal. Kind of a "what do you expect when you expect guys to fight and die and then spend a couple months in paradise". He takes full advantage of his time there.

I thought his final comment on the atomic bomb was interesting, he didn't seem to approve of it. To me, it seemed as if he was saying that the soldiers signed up to fight and die, therefore, invading Japan was their duty.

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