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Charlie Company: What Vietnam Did To Us
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Charlie Company: What Vietnam Did To Us

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  100 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
About 65 men in a combat infantry unit called Charlie Company came back from Vietnam to fight a second war waged at home and in the mind. They felt ignored and forgotten until 1981, when Newsweek correspondents came to talk to them for a major cover story--and came away with enough material to fill this book. More truth . . . than most of us care to take on.--The New York ...more
Hardcover, First Edition
Published March 1983 by William Morrow & Company (first published January 1983)
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Sep 07, 2009 Sheryl rated it it was amazing
I read the book 12 years ago to try to understand my husband's experience in Vietnam. It's been 40 years and my husband took his own life after his "predator" the war came after him again this many years later. You can't help but question why you didn't see it coming, but just like everyone else I forgot how deep those invisible wounds went. Actually, he probably still had a chance if it were not for the "one pill fits all" mentality of the VA. There's another book written by a veteran of Iraq a ...more
Oct 19, 2008 Jon rated it really liked it
I made it through. The stories in this book are raw, and the descriptions of in-combat atrocities remain etched in my mind.

A tough read, but worth hearing the testimonies of dozens of Vietnam vets. For someone who has claimed pacifism for a while but didn't know war stories, this book gave me direct perspective from those who served on just how unclear the goals and missions of war are, and the repercussions of haunting memories on life after military service. I thank my Aunt who married a Viet
Jeff Walden
This book covers the Vietnam War and its aftermath from the perspective of the soldiers in one of the companies there, Charlie Company. It deliberately has exactly one focus: it concentrates on the men and their personal experiences there and after, and it completely ignores the geopolitical situation. I suppose that's an entirely different story, but I would have liked to have a little more of it than the book presented (which, as I recall, was only about half a page in the preface).

That said,
May 27, 2014 Nicole rated it it was amazing
I believe that Americans are obligated to learn about and understand wars that our soldiers have fought in. I have read about both World Wars and about our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but I admit I know little about the Korean War and Vietnam. I hoped to change at least half of that with Charlie Company: What Vietnam Did to Us. And while I now have a better understanding of what our soldiers went through in Nam, I still don’t understand what the hell we were doing over there, what kind of war ...more
Byron Edgington
Oct 07, 2015 Byron Edgington rated it it was amazing
As a veteran of the Vietnam war, I found this book painfully hard to read, because it reflects the still elusive truth of 'what that war did to us,' as the subtitle says. Note that it doesn't say, 'what the war did to them.' That war still echoes as a searing memory for those who served in it, but it does so even for those who did not.
'Charlie Company' is personal recollections taken from several members of an infantry unit in Vietnam's 3rd military region, near Lai Ke, not far from Saigon. The
Jun 03, 2009 Bill added it
Being one of the Charlie Company members I found it necessary to create a blog (so to speak) that contains errata and notations about this book. Trust me...don't believe all that is in that book. It is rife with errors of which some were more than likely intentional on the authors part just to "boost" some of the narrative.

My blog can be found at:

It's still under construction and will probably go way beyond the book in regard to Charlie Company. Photographs, chronolo
Mar 24, 2015 Shirley rated it it was amazing
The story of each of the 65 soldiers of Charlie Company during one year in Vietnam - the ones who made it, those who didn't, the commanders, the hated, the beloved, and their life of living on the line every minute of every day. For anyone that lived through Vietnam, this book is a must. It's a reality check and a reminder of all that our troops went through with little or no thanks.
Feb 12, 2009 Matt rated it it was ok
The true story of the effects of Vietnam on one company of soldiers. Newsweek went to talk to them, hoping to have enough material to fill a magazine article and went home with enough material to fill a book. It was good, if a tad preachy. I liked it but not enough to keep it. It's at the used book store as I type this.
May 25, 2015 Alexander rated it did not like it
I'm not a big fan of military books. My dad asked me to read it since it was one of his favorites. I just felt it confusing between who was talking, but I would recommend it to a person who has a interest in military history.
Sep 01, 2016 Lizistanton rated it it was amazing
Another must read if you want to understand the personal side of this gawd-awful "conflict." Give the men a pat on the back and a smile -- it is far less than they deserve. Good read.
Feb 28, 2008 Carol rated it it was amazing
An eye-opener for a kid who wasn't old enough at the time to understand Vietnam or what it did to the people who served.
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