The Borinqueneers, A Visual History of the 65th Infantry Regiment

Los Borinqueños, la historia visual del Regimiento 65 de Infantería

Non-Fiction - Military
200 Pages
Reviewed on 04/05/2023
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Author Biography

Readers' Favorite Book Awards - Bronze Medal in Nonfiction Military Category
International Latino Book Awards - Best Book About Military Service
Next Generation Indie Book Awards - WINNER, Military Category
Florida Book Awards - SILVER MEDAL, Non-fiction Category
National Indie Excellence Book Awards - WINNER, Military Nonfiction Category

Noemí Figueroa Soulet produced and directed "The Borinqueneers," an award-winning PBS documentary film about the all-Puerto Rican 65th Infantry Regiment, the only Hispanic-segregated unit in Army history. Narrated by acclaimed actor, Hector Elizondo, it was broadcast nationally on PBS, the Armed Forces Network to more than 850,000 U.S. troops overseas, and had numerous screenings throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and internationally. The film was selected to participate in a number of film festivals winning the Military Channel Award at the GI Film Festival, a Best Puerto Rican Documentary award by the Rincon International Film Festival, a Best Professional Documentary award at the Real to Reel International Film Festival in Shelby, NC, and an Audience Award at the Orlando Hispanic Film Festival. For more than 24 years Noemi has kept the legacy of the regiment alive by conducting presentations at corporations, universities, military facilities and community organizations; recording veteran interviews and preserving archival photographs. Born in Puerto Rico, she is a graduate of New York University and received a Certificate in Digital Filmmaking from Westchester Community College. She resides in Kissimmee, Florida.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Astrid Iustulin for Readers' Favorite

Some stories can only be understood if you see the images of the people who lived them. This is the case of the 65th Infantry Regiment, whose story is told in The Borinqueneers by Noemí Figueroa Soulet. Through the hundreds of illustrations of this magnificent bilingual book (written in English and Spanish), readers will discover everything there is to know about the only Hispanic-segregated unit in U.S. Army history starting from 1899, the year of its creation. Then, they will learn about the deeds and lives of the soldiers and officers during the two World Wars and the Korean War, in which the regiment particularly distinguished itself. The photographs are meticulously ordered and have captions to help readers learn about people, places, and events.

The Borinqueneers is a book that arouses the enthusiasm and admiration of those who look at it. Noemí Figueroa Soulet has done an excellent job collecting the photographs and arranging them into thematic sections; this is especially helpful during the long narrative of the Korean War, to which most of the book is devoted. Two chapters struck me the most from a visual point of view: the one dedicated to the Puerto Rican soldiers in the snow and, above all, the one featuring the rare color photographs taken during the Korean War. I hope that The Borinqueneers will be appreciated as much as it deserves. It is a tribute that the families of those who served in the 65th Infantry Regiment will surely love, but military history buffs will also want to add this book to their collection.