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Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite
At times heartbreaking and gritty, Bullets and Bandages: Bond of Brothers by Robert J. Saniscalchi follows the story of nineteen-year-old Pat who joins the military and flies to Vietnam as a US Army Field Medic in 1968. But the experience of war is crueler and far more sinister than anything this frontline medic ever imagined, with flying bullets, death, and other ravages of war surrounding him. Follow him through a gripping tale that explores the uncertainty of war, the power of human resilience, the mirth and wit of good company, and friendships born of common struggle.
This military historical novel is well-researched and told in a voice that is clear and captivating. Readers will appreciate the care the author takes in writing a convincing and compelling world ripped to shreds by war. Character development is wonderfully accomplished and it is easy to relate to the protagonist, to understand his fears, and to feel for him in moments of uncertainty and danger. The author puts his characters right into action and unveils disturbing imagery to readers. When we meet the protagonist flying to Vietnam, he is in the company of mates who chatter about the adventures that could be in store for them — the irony of the situation couldn’t be more startling as they will discover once in Vietnam. Bullets and Bandages: Bond of Brothers has a wonderful setting and the detailed writing mixes with the author’s ability to create strong imagery to enthrall readers. The story is immersive, and it is easy to root for this young character with strong Italian family roots who believes in a big family. Robert J Saniscalchi’s novel is a powerful tribute to war heroes; it is original, realistic, and utterly revealing of the horrors of war.