Mr. N’s Highly Coveted Books on #Vietnam and #VietnamWar! #FridayReads #Books

Friday Book Round Up


Welcome to this week’s edition of Friday Book Round Up. Today, we get to peek into the vast library of Mr. N.  Here are some of my favorite Vietnam War books that I have on my bookshelf and I highly recommend them all.  We are about 50 years since the peak of the Vietnam War and it wouldn’t hurt America to appreciate the sacrifice of the brave men who went and fought and some who made the ultimate sacrifice.


Black Berets and Painted Faces – Gary A. Linderer

This informative book: Black Berets and Painted Faces” The Story of a LRP in Vietnam. The author, Gary Linderer takes you into the bush with the lrp’s. There you’ll see everything he saw and experience everything he did. everything.


“I have read many great books on the Vietnam War and this is one of the best ever written.  The Lifestyle and Combat skill of the LRP is awe inspiring.  Linderer takes the reader into this shadow world of elite special forces and gives you a close look at the job they did and the amazing men who did it.  Linderer also clearly points out that young men fighting in Vietnam could only do so much when held back by REMFs, egotistical CO’s and stupid politicians in the States.  I love this book, I respect Gary A. Linderer and call him a true hero.  A must read for any fan of Vietnam War material and anyone who is a fan of elite warfare techniques. 5+ Stars” – Mr. N


Thud Ridge – Jack Broughton

This is the story of a special breed of warrior, the fighter-bomber pilot; the story of valiant men who flew the F-105 Thunderchief ‘Thud’ Fighter-Bomber over the hostile skies of North Vietnam.


From the briefing rooms to the bombing runs, Vice-Wing Commander Colonel Jack Broughton, recounts the tragedy and heartache, the high drama and flaming terror, the exhilaration and thrill of life on the edge. He relives the incredible feeling of high-speed, low-level sorties where SAM missiles, flak and MiGs were all in a day’s work. The bravery of the pilots and their commitment to each other in times of extreme fear, crisis and catastrophe are highlighted by vivid, fast moving flying sequences.


Thud Ridge is a fascinating and graphic memorial to the courage of the men, the power of their machines and their dedication to their mission.


A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam by Neil Sheehan





When he came to Vietnam in 1962, Lieutenant Colonel John Paul Vann was the one clear-sighted participant in an enterprise riddled with arrogance and self-deception, a charismatic soldier who put his life and career on the line in an attempt to convince his superiors that the war should be fought another way. By the time he died in 1972, Vann had embraced the follies he once decried. He died believing that the war had been won.


In this magisterial book, a monument of history and biography that was awarded the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction, a renowned journalist tells the story of John Vann–“the one irreplaceable American in Vietnam”–and of the tragedy that destroyed a country and squandered so much of America’s young manhood and resources.


Lost Victory: A Firsthand Account of America’s Sixteen-Year Involvement in Vietnam by William Colby, James McCargar

Not another book about what America did wrong in Vietnam, this one is, primarily, about what we did right. For example, former CIA director Colby and diplomat McCargar maintain that the post-Tet pacification effort (in which Colby was centrally involved) was a great success, that the 1972 Easter Offensive demonstrated that the South Vietnamese could hold their own without U.S. ground support. In staunch defense of Colby’s Phoenix program, the book argues for its effectiveness in undermining the Communist infrastructure, claiming that Phoenix’s reputation for brutality is undeserved. Fighting the “wrong” kind of war, however, is cited as a mistake, as is U.S. complicity in the ’63 coup that overthrew President Ngo Dinh Diem, and Washington’s failure to provide aid at a certain juncture in ’75. Colby’s CIA service, from Saigon station chief to director, provides him with an insider’s perspective on the war, a perspective many readers will consider self-serving. Photos. Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc


Over the Beach – Zalin Grant

“The Right Stuff without the hype, Yeager without the ego.”—Washington Post Book World



“While the jet-jockey competitiveness, the undercurrent of fear, the victories and foul-ups of jet sweeps have been described many times, few such chronicles have done it so grippingly and with such a ring of accuracy. Mr. Grant explores the emotions felt not only by the men in battle but by the wives and others left behind, and the questions the war raised in their minds. To put in larger context the war’s impact on individual participants, the author periodically reviews the high-level struggles over how to fight the air war. “What is most impressive is to find an analysis so clearly stated, so seemingly on track in locating the weak spots in the policies of various political and military officials….Written in a straightforward yet stylish prose, Over the Beach carries tremendous conviction.”—Richard Witkin, New York Times Book Review


Khe Sanh: Siege in the Clouds – An Oral History by Eric Hammel

Nearly 100 American veterans recall the grueling 77-day siege of Khe Sanh, an ordeal that epitomizes virtually every aspect of the Vietnam War. Surrounded by two divisions of North Vietnamese soldiers and resupplied entirely by air, hungry and thirsty U.S. Marines engaged in some of the most savage hand-to-hand combat of the entire war. The vividly detailed recollections of key participants place readers at the heart of the action, as mortars fall continuously and Marines struggle to cut down the enemy. A gripping narrative that illustrates the harrowing nature of a battle in which superior American fire and air power proved decisive, but at a terrible cost.


Vietnam: A History by Stanley Karnow

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Stanley Karnow offers the defintive history of the Vietnam conflict–a monumental narrative that analyzes, clarifies, and demystifies the tragic ordeal of this unpopular, unwinnable war. Photos.


The End of the Line: The Siege of Khe Sanh by Robert Pisor

“Anybody attracted to the again fashionable delusion that the United States might have ‘won’ in Vietnam ought to read and meditate upon The End of the Line . . . All the lessons are here in concise and readable form” ―Newsweek


A war correspondent’s searching account of a crucial battle in the Vietnam War. It was the most spectacular battle of the entire war. For 6,000 trapped marines, it was a nightmare; for President Lyndon Johnson, an obsession. For General Westmoreland, it was to be the final vindication of technological weaponry; and for General Giap, the architect of the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu, it was a spectacular ruse masking troops moving south for the Tet offensive. In a compelling narrative, Robert Pisor sets forth the history, the politics, the strategies, and, above all, the desperate reality of the battle that became the turning point of the United States’s involvement in Vietnam.


M – John Sack

Documents a year in the life of a “Mighty Mike” Vietnam soldier, chronicling their gripping rollercoaster encounters with an invisible enemy between the streets of Saigon and the merciless jungles. Reissue. NYT.



Although there are many books and films dealing with the Vietnam War, Sideshow tells the truth about America’s secret and illegal war with Cambodia from 1969 to 1973. William Shawcross interviewed hundreds of people of all nationalities, including cabinet ministers, military men, and civil servants, and extensively researched U.S. Government documents. This full-scale investigation―with material new to this edition―exposes how Kissinger and Nixon treated Cambodia as a sideshow. Although the president and his assistant claimed that a secret bombing campaign in Cambodia was necessary to eliminate North Vietnamese soldiers who were attacking American troops across the border, Shawcross maintains that the bombings only spread the conflict, but led to the rise of the Khmer Rouge and the subsequent massacre of a third of Cambodia’s population.


Do you agree with Mr. N on his Top 10 Vietnam/Vietnam War books and/or which books would you recommend? Share in the comments below.


Happy Reading!


MRS N, Book Addict


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