Kevin Powers, an Iraqi war vet, can write. In this well-crafted story that moves back and forth in time, we get a soldier’s eye view of the war. Powers is able to depict what he terms the beautiful violence of war in a way that keeps his narrative even-keeled and credible. Together with Billy Flynn’s Long Halftime Walk, I think we have two great accounts of the war, both at home and in Iraq.
I am tempted to put this one in the same neighborhood as Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried; it’s that good.
Will Powers have more to offer? Will he be able to move away from the war more successfully than O’Brien? We’ll see.