Tag Archives: home front

The home front in fiction

I’ve read a few books recently that address our 21st century home front by approaching it through fiction, whether through novels or short stories. In “Home front” by Kristin Hannah, the author portrays a woman soldier who has trained most of her adult life to be a military pilot, and finally gets to see some action in Afghanistan, to the dismay of her increasingly estranged husband, surly teenage daughter, and clingy younger daughter. Unfortunately things don’t work out well for Joline, our heroine, but ultimately the family comes together. While not a literary masterpiece, “Home front” does give a different kind of perspective – of the female soldier, with her family left behind to try to hold it together without mom, the glue of the family.

In “You know when the men are gone” by Siobhan Fallon, these sometimes interlinked short stories that take place at Fort Hood, Texas, show various sides to the story, and mostly that “war is hell” on relationships. Some do better than others, but overall the characters are all just doing the best they can (more or less). Better written than “Home front” there is sometimes a dry humor that keeps the book from being too depressing, given the subject matter.

And on the poetry end, “Blood Red Dawn,” mentioned in the April 2nd post, gives both the home front and front lines perspective, by way of poetry – written by the author as a catharsis and way of dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder.

There are many more perspectives out there – anyone have a favorite war or home front book, perhaps from earlier wars than the current ones our soldiersbench in memory of Susie and Larry Rich are bravely fighting, where their loved ones are left behind to pick up the pieces?