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Author Topic: Joshua Key Book: Deserter's Tale
jeff house
Babbler # 518

posted 02 March 2007 11:17 AM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The Los Angelese Times today published a rave review of the book:

"THE Deserter's Tale" by Joshua Key is destined to become part of the literature of the Iraq war. It is not literature with a capital L, nor is it full of arty metaphors or artistry or artfulness. No soldier reaches out of a trench to touch a butterfly only to be shot by a sniper, as in Erich Maria Remarque's "All Quiet on the Western Front."

Key's story, as told to writer Lawrence Hill, lacks the atmospheric writing of Norman Mailer's "The Naked and the Dead" or Irwin Shaw's "The Young Lions." But from the book's opening pages, Key's clear voice rings out, explaining why he deserted the Army after seven months in Iraq, with anguish and a frankness that invests the book with quiet eloquence.


One of the book's great pleasures is in seeing the author's personal development, the journey he has taken, turning away from violence and destruction to become more humane. "One's first obligation," Key says, "is to the moral truth buried deep inside our own souls." He understands a soldier's obligations under the Geneva Conventions and the Nuremberg doctrine not to participate in atrocities. He has paid a stiff price for his desertion: exiled in Canada (where he may not be able to remain) and shunned by much of his family.

deserter's tale

From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

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