I received this book as a gift! My dear friend, Lydia, sent a sweet card with the book, explaining that she knows the author, and wanted to send it to me after reading a blog post regarding my interest in Vietnam. Thank you, Lydia!
The best way I can describe this book is a mix of a memoir, photo album, and poetry collection, all wrapped up into a nice book. It gave me a sense of what Watts went through during her year of service.
While preparing to receive her undergraduate degree at Villanova, she knew wanted to travel. She wanted to join the Peace Corps, but they wanted her to start before graduation. Then, she found a brochure for the Supplemental Recreation Activities Overseas (SRAO) program of the American Red Cross.
What she ended up with was a year of service, and a lifetime of memories.
Watts blends photos, poems, soldiers’ artwork, and her memories into a powerful book. It made me feel like I was there with her.
I also learned about the SRAO program of the Red Cross, and how instrumental these women have been since World War II. I gained a new perspective, and a sense of gratitude. I know Watts and her crew were appreciated by the men in the jungles of Vietnam, during a very trying time there, and here at home.
Although I wasn’t alive during her service, I appreciate Watts for writing this book. It provides a unique perspective on a unique type of service during the war, and I’m grateful for her to show me, and others, this insight. Reading accounts like this makes me want to learn even more about the Vietnam War and the people who were involved, both soldiers and civilians.
Thank you again, Lydia, for this gift!
4 1/2 out of 5 stars.
Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂