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Later Than Estimate but My New Book is Complete

Praise the Lord! After multiple edits I finally have released book number eight. As stated before, The Pathway Home is different from my romances or mysteries. I’ll leave you with the cover and the blurb and some commentary about the book and the subject of the Vietnam War.

The Pathway Home Summary

This is a war story. Well, not really a war story but a story about the effects of war. Men who would never have thought of taking another human life received training to kill and then were thrown into a war zone. Kill or be killed? Although fiction, this story was driven by a very real event during the Vietnam War.

What happened to those peace loving men and women who came back home mentally changed and tried to fit back into their regular life again? What happened to the soldiers who returned so disfigured, so physically destroyed they would never fit into normal life? This is a story, set in a period between 1962 and 1980, of one such soldier.

Toi Gheh lay at death’s door on a Vietnamese jungle pathway when found by a humble oriental woman and a little girl who nursed him back to health with compassion and Godly love. But neither could do anything about his disfigured body and they couldn’t do anything about his amnesia, his inability to remember anything of his past except that of his faith in God.

Through a number of events and after a decade in the jungles of Cambodia, Toi Gheh finds his way back to the United States and begins the search for his identity with the help of Mark Nelson, a soldier injured at the tail end of the war activity in Vietnam. Toi and Mark begin a writing partnership, utilizing information from the investigation into Toi’s past. In his condition of total disfigurement, he is not sure he wants to find a family, but he would like to have a real name again.

His faith has sustained him throughout the years since his accident, and though Mark also claims a belief in Christ, Toi has doubts about his full commitment by statements Mark has made.

Toi’s goal is for Mark to surrender to God’s plan. Mark’s goal is to become a great writing success and find out Toi’s real name.  Toi and Mark have found what appears to be real evidence of Toi’s identity when suddenly the whole investigation takes an unexpected turn.

A Short History of The Pathway Home’s Inspiration

I started this story in 1980 and put it away so many times I can’t count until an unction made me take out the old drafts last year. I played around with it several times but again put it away. This spring I decided it needed to see the light of day. I liked the story and thought perhaps others might find it interesting as well. While researching I found myself with questions I wanted answered, questions never fully answered.

How do people leave normal life and take on the role of a soldier for two or three years? They fight, they kill the enemy and then are expected to come back home, take up regular life and forget seeing what they saw on the battlefield.  How do they accomplish that change?

The story I decided to tell is not all-inclusive or a deep tale but draws in bits and pieces of men who fought the win-less war that was Vietnam, a tale of one man’s search to find himself literally, yet the story reflects on all those Vietnam veterans who came back home with no parades, to an America that treated them very differently than the “Heroes” of the previous wars. Perhaps a lesson learned when we look at the acknowledgement of the current soldiers fighting win-less wars. The veterans are soldiers of a country that sent them to war, they are not the policy makers who declared the wars.

The soldiers that went to Vietnam answered America’s call just like any other of the soldiers that fought our wars throughout the years, but Vietnam soldiers came home to riots, protests, and the shame of ‘losing’ the battle. Not the Vietnam veterans fault, but they received a great portion of the blame. Tagged as women and baby killers, drug addicts, black market racketeers and labeled with all kinds of atrocities; why were the reactions to the Vietnam war so different?

Every night for the first time, every evening, the horrors of war came into our living rooms via the television. No longer were only the heroics of the US soldiers summarized in a theater documentary news flash, but now, the war, the blood, the children burning, running naked, scenes of guns to the heads of men and women and seeing their brains and blood splattered to the street were in pictures we could see. It happened in every war we have fought, but in Vietnam it was broadcast into our homes every evening on the news hour.

No wonder that the protests and riots abounded. Young men saying no, we won’t go. But someone has to fight the battles to maintain freedom, don’t they?

Freedom comes at a terrible price when diplomacy doesn’t work. We are blessed that we are in a country with enough military might that, as of this time, no country has attempted to attack our shores. We’ve had our share of dissent groups striking here and there but we have not received a declaration of war from another country since the defeat of Japan. Victory in any war comes at a terrible price and it is men and women and children who pay that price.

I hope those of you who find The Pathway Home interesting will let me know.

Available at Amazon.com , Smashwords, Barnes and Noble and other online retailers. Print version available October 20th 2012

Thanks to those of you who have followed and prayed for my writing success. God Bless.

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