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The Private War of Corporal Henson

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4.67  ·  Rating details ·  27 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Vietnam didn't stay in Southeast Asia. It followed former U.S. Marine Corporal Nathan Henson back to the World-his hometown in the Florida panhandle. Seventeen years later, specters from 'Nam still haunt the corners of Nathan's life and the recurring nightmarish scenes of carnage won't die. Desperate, he seeks help and joins a support group for Vietnam combat veterans. Now ...more
Paperback, 276 pages
Published August 19th 2014 by Stairway Press (first published June 3rd 2014)
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James
After noticing the author's name mentioned a few times on various blogs, then seeing some reviews of his books, I downloaded a copy of The Private War of Corporal Henson by E.Michael Helms. I didn't realize until I started reading the introduction that this is a follow-up to his first book about life in Vietnam, but I don't think you need to read them in order, as it's a bit of a mix: fiction and a semi-autobiographical memoir of his experiences during the war and adjusting to life afterward. I' ...more
Dianne
E. Michael Helms' The Private War of Corporal Henson Blitz & Giveaway
http://tometender.blogspot.com/2015/08/e-michael-helms-private-war-of-corporal.html
Grand Prize $25 Amazon Gift Card | Plus 10 eCopies - International where allowed Ends August 31, 2015

Once again, E. Michael Helms has rocked me to my knees with his words. The Private War of Corporal Henson follows a young soldier returning from Vietnam, to the unwelcoming arms of the country he swore to serve with his life. He may no longer be on the battlefield, but the trauma his heart and mind underwent is still burning
...more
Aditi
Sep 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-reviews, memoir
Susan Pease Banitt, a Harvard trained psychotherapist and social worker, has quoted remarkably about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as:

“PTSD is a whole-body tragedy, an integral human event of enormous proportions with massive repercussions.”

The Private War of Corporal Henson by E. Michael Helms is a semi-autobiographical memoir which is about a Corporal named Nathan Henson and is also the sequel to The Proud Bastards . Although, I didn't get to read E. Michael Helm's previous book, st
...more
E.Michael Helms
May 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
"Private War" is a semi-autobiographical novel and sequel to my Vietnam memoir, "The Proud Bastards." Find out what happened AFTER the guns fell silent and the warriors came home.
Jonel
Aug 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Once again Helms puts pen to paper to create a work that blew my mind and held me captive throughout. The well-developed plot is backed by solid and inviting narrative as well as poignant descriptions. Helms mixes emotion with some hard hitting realities. He creates a flawless world for readers to loose themselves in.

I love the way that Helms developed his characters. He develops his main character physically, emotionally, and psychologically. I found him easy to connect with. His difficulties
...more
Melinda
Feb 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
A story I found emotionally compelling. Can't get a closer psychological glimpse into the head of a combat veteran unless you are one or witness their silent and thundering anguish first hand, still never really comprehending their inner turmoil along with haunting demons and the unshakable feeling of guilt, not to mention the horrific carnage witnessed in front of their virgin eyes, their unsurmountable losses of friends and fellow soldiers. Helms manages to paint a detailed rendering of PTSD a ...more
Mark Mortensen
Mar 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, vietnam, usmc
I had thoroughly enjoyed a prior book written by E. Michael Helms however this book remained on my shelf for over a year as I pondered reading a novel on PTSD. I didn’t want to be sucked into a depressing story. To my astonishment I fully enjoyed this well written story that even surpassed the first book.

American servicemen including Marines were thrust into the Vietnam War to face a forbidden foreign environment that included a well-trained determined enemy. Upon returning home to America the
...more
Max Everhart
Oct 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The characters . . .for me, it all starts and ends with the characters, and answering some simple questions: do I care about them? are they real, interesting, flawed, sympathetic? And in this story, the answer to those questions is yes. I cared about these deeply psychologically wounded Vietnam vets. I cared about hearing their stories, their struggles, their fears, their regrets. Reading this one, I felt like a documentarian following these guys around, and it was equal parts fascinating and he ...more
Maari
Aug 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
He's done it again!!
This is such an amazing book!! It is emotionally captivating!! I don't believe someone has an idea of the turmoil, unless they have been there.. This is a book that will remain with me for a lifetime..

Thank You, E. Michael Helms for giving me the opportunity to read and review your book
C.N. Bring
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Powerful

Loved this book! This is a powerful story as the journey of the corporal unfolds. As he faces challenges, adversity, and then battles PTSD you can't help but be encouraged by what he overcomes. An inspiring read for all who are facing their own battle. You can get to the other side. A must read!
InD'tale Magazine
Mr. Helms has written a poignant tale of those who suffer from the ravages of war.

Read full review in the 2015 May issue of InD'tale Magazine.
...more
Johanna
Aug 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
description

“It wasn’t the homecoming Nathan Henson had envisioned… a quick flight back to “the World” on a freedom bird to some west coast airport where one could hopefully slip back into the heartland unnoticed by hostile demonstrators. Forty-eight hours from the jungle to the streets. Welcome home.“

For Corporal Henson, the war may be over, but the battle has just begun. Suffering from PTSD, he struggles to adjust back to civilian life, haunted by memories from the battlefield, and of his fellow soldi
...more
April Khaito
THE PRIVATE WAR OF CORPORAL HENSON was quite honestly more than I expected. I thoroughly enjoyed THE PROUD BASTARDS, Helms' memoir of his time as a marine in Vietnam, but didn't know what to expect from the fictional (and semi-autobiographical) sequel. Not only is THE PRIVATE WAR OF CORPORAL HENSON the heart-rending story of a group of veterans facing down their demons, it is also--surprisingly--a compelling romance. I appreciate and admire Helms' style in dealing with such an emotional and comp ...more
Christy
Aug 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Private War of Corporal Henson, written by E. Michael Helms, is an amazing,honest, real, heart filled, and powerful story that takes you into the lives of four Vietnam War vets after the war is over.

The war may be over but not for these soldiers left scarred by the profound loss and hurt they endured and carried home with them.

They left one war only to come home to a new war all their own.
The soldiers in this story are from various MOS's and branches of service, yet they share the same in
...more
Sheri
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Private War of Corporal Henson by E. Michael Helms

U.S Marie Corporal Nathan Henson was in the Vietnam War. But he is haunted by gruesome memories daily, and suffering from PTSD. He decides to join a support group with other Vets. There he meets; Dan "Doc" Matthews facing his problems with addiction, Vic Guerino Army fighter pilot trying to cope with his "grounded" life and Rene Bourdeaux, a paranoid loner rebelling against society.

A well written story of life after the war. Vivid details wi
...more
Maggie Thom
Feb 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a gut-wrenching account of men's memory of the Vietnam War and all they went through and how difficult it has been to step back into their old world. This is about a group of five men who's lives are a mess. They discuss their issues and see if they can get their lives back on track. Each handles it very differently.

This is about the truth about war, the ugliness of war that not only occurs while its happening but its long last effects. Its an up close look at what it does to people for
...more
Marjorie
Aug 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Given To Me For An Honest Review


The Private War of Corporal Henson by E. Michael Helms is a must read. It's a real page turner and those pages will seem to turn theirselves until you finish reading. I found this to be a good read. It's the story of one Marine who came home after serving in VietNam, but it really is the story of all those who served and came back. They left a war zone, caught a flight and landed in the World but what they found was another war zone.Corporal Henson's story could b
...more
Darlene Cruz
Aug 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A well written story, so detailed and emotional account of war. War stories are just gut retching but the transition back to civilian life, that's something else. Suffering from PTSD Nathan Henson Vietnam war veteran faces the struggles and while he search his life, we are privileged to see that journey. The author written the story so well, all the characters and the scenes were vividly imbedded in my mind like watching it unfold in front of me. Wonderful and riveting read. I won this book on G ...more
Maari
Oct 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
He's done it again!
This is such an amazing book!! It is emotionally captivating!! I don't believe someone has an idea of the turmoil, unless they have been there.. This is a book that will remain with me for a lifetime..

Thank You, E. Michael Helms for giving me the opportunity to read and review your book
M.J. Payne
May 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
“The Private War of Corporal Henson” by E. Michael Helms is a story of the victory of the human spirit in Corporal Nathan Henson. It is about an overcomer at a turning point in life where he can sink, as some of his comrades do, under the burden of PTSD, or embrace another type of battle as an ex-Marine and face the challenge of living and loving fully after seeing a great deal of the worst that life has to offer.
The classic theme of the overcomer who triumphs over all the odds is really what t
...more
Kristin
Nov 06, 2015 rated it liked it
I won a free copy of this book via Goodreads giveaway a few years ago (Goodreads tells me I read it in November 2015), and I am forever thankful. The semi-autobiographical novel follows Corporal Henson, a long-time PTSD sufferer from his time spent fighting in Vietnam. He is persuaded to participate in a PTSD support group for veterans and we follow him through his struggles to come to terms with what he experienced at war, how that has haunted him for decades since, and how to move ahead with h ...more
Jeanne
Mar 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A real as it gets

Nathan Henson goes full circle, to hell and back. The author does a masterful job of bringing the reader into the personal horrors of the Viet Nam war.
The characters (and I suspect, the author) bare their souls and their hidden pain as they relive their part in the war. Not all of the veterans make it out alive, but there is hope and forgiveness enough to bring closure to the story. Well done. Thank you for your service.
-- Wife of a helicopter crew chief
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I was born in Georgia way back in the last century but grew up and lived most of my life in Panama City, Florida. In 2004 my wife and I moved to the Upstate region of South Carolina in the shadows of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, a land of stunning vistas and numerous waterfalls.

I’ve been traditionally published since 1990 when my Vietnam War memoir, The Proud Bastards, was published. It’s a
...more

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