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Reviewed by Foluso Falaye for Readers' Favorite
When Joseph Crew learned that his twin brother Dick was sworn into the army on March 12, 1958, he deliberated whether to stay at home and keep his girlfriend or join Dick in the army and escape the crumbling situation at home. Seventeen-year-old Joseph chose the latter and joined the US Army at a time that American forces were deployed to defend Western Europe against Russian attacks during the Cold War. Fall In, Fall Out: The Dogface Years is Joseph Crew's story about his carefree days in the army, which apart from carrying out his official duties, were spent exploring his sensual desires, visiting bars, and getting into different kinds of trouble - with his army friends and brother as accomplices. The story offers an adventure-filled time from Joseph's past to life and includes the themes of love, peer pressure, brotherhood, suicide, war, prostitution, divorce, hope, and more.
Fall In, Fall Out took me back to my teenage days and the excitement of new experiences. Joseph's feeling of guilt regarding his sexual desires reminded me of my own struggles with similar issues as a teenager raised in a Christian home. Though it is set in a different time and place, I found the memoir quite relatable. Every part of the book is captivating! It kept me engaged throughout, with its expert mix of unpredictable, funny, and drama-filled events - from bar fights to court cases, clashes with superiors, and court-martial scares. Historically rich, highly descriptive, and electrifying, the book is perfect for readers who enjoy historical memoirs and narratives about young, spirited protagonists. This particular one will remind you to live, laugh, and experience life to the fullest.