Once Upon a War

The Diary of a Waiting Wife

Non-Fiction - Memoir
238 Pages
Reviewed on 06/02/2014
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite

Once Upon a War by Joan Diehl is a true story of one woman’s account of the Vietnam War. Only this time, it’s told from the point of view of the wife left behind when her husband goes off to war. Joan and her husband, Glen, are no strangers to moving; it goes with the territory when you are in the air force. This time, though, he's being sent to Vietnam, where he ends up in psychological warfare as the navigator of an HC-47. Joan decides that the best place for their family during his absence is Schilling Manor, a waiting wives community in Salina, Kansas, operated by the army. This is Joan’s story, the story of the life of an air force wife and how she learned to cope.

Once Upon a War by Joan Diehl was a fascinating story. It made a change to read a war story told from the other side and I feel she told it well. It must have been difficult for the women left behind to fend for themselves. Joan has portrayed her feelings, as well as those of her children and the others at Schilling Manor, in a way that makes you feel as though you were there with them. Very good book, nice viewpoint on an otherwise wicked subject.