Arlen's Gun: A Novel of Men at War
An enthralling and deeply moving novel about the war in Vietnam, from author and Vietnam veteran Edgar Doleman
Arlen Washington is an angry and troubled young man, stricken with grief following the death of his beloved mother, his ‘Big Ma’. Arlen joins the Air Force, to avoid being drafted into the war in Vietnam, but he is sent there as a gunner on an armed cargo aircraft, known as ‘Puff the Magic Dragon’. When his plane, the ‘Spooky 45’ is shot down and crash lands in the jungle, the crew survives but one man is severely injured. Arlen disconnects a powerful minigun from the plane’s wreckage to defend the crew against enemy attack before an Army platoon arrives to rescue them. But the Army’s tank gets stuck in a ditch and Arlen and a fellow gunner, Otis, are left stranded with the platoon, while the rest of the crew leave to get medical attention. Arlen is thrust into a jungle battle, where he finds a sense of purpose and belonging in the brutality of war.
Arlen’s Gun is an enthralling and deeply moving novel about the war in Vietnam, told sensitively and with compassion by Edgar Doleman, a war veteran with twenty years’ service and two-tours of Vietnam. The book is an authentic and honest portrayal of the horrors of war, and the experiences of ordinary men who risked their lives in the Vietnam war. Doleman writes about the conflict in clear and vivid detail, drawing on his own first-hand experiences of warfare.
The novel is beautifully written and easy to read, with a helpful glossary to help those less familiar with military terminology. The book will appeal to fans of military fiction, and anyone interested in the Vietnam war. A beautiful tribute to all those who fought in Vietnam, and all those who risk their lives every day in the name of war.
Star Rating: 5 Stars
‘A beautifully written novel and tribute to all those who fought in Vietnam, and risk their lives every day in the name of war. A GOLD WINNER and highly recommended.’