LeighAnne's Reviews > Army Wives: The Unwritten Code of Military Marriage

Army Wives by Tanya Biank
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's review
Mar 17, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: 2011-books

I read this book because my husband met the sister of the author. And honestly, the tv show is one of our guilty pleasures (that we try to hide from friends....). The show has just enough authenticity to keep us watching the silliness.
I can't really write out a good review of the book, because I'm torn. On one hand, it was a fairly good representation of some of the "quirks" about Army life. (obviously not the murders--I'm talking about other things) But even though the author was raised in the Army, has a sibling who is career Army, and now has married into it, she has an undertone to her writing that is negative. There are a couple of instances where she adds an unnecessary, snide remark about something. For instance, when discussing the fact that junior enlisted soldiers sometimes (she says often) take second jobs to be able to support their families, she adds a remark something like, "I wonder why we never see Privates with pizza delivery boxes on recruiting posters." Ludicrous, obviously, but also not necessary. We all got the point in the paragraph before about how little they make compared to NCO's and officers.
I may be defensive on this issue, but I feel like there is a certain line that shouldn't be crossed when discussing military life with civilians. Simply because there is no way to fully describe the military life. No matter how much detail is given, there will be much that is left out. And a civilian who has nothing to draw on besides the words you gave them cannot truly understand what the life gives-and takes. Just reading the reviews on this site makes that obvious.
Overall, a "real" story. But I still found myself cringing several times at the harm it could do to the impressions of what is really a pretty great way of life.

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