Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Tree of Smoke - post III

The words on the back of the dust jacket are effusive about this book and 100 odd pages in you can’t disagree with them but so far there is not much to sway you in the direction of praise heaping.

The reason is that despite things becoming slightly clearer – the characters settling down helps – there is still a great deal of confusion. As 1965 draws to an end Skip seems to have been sent into the wilderness simply to witness the murder of a priest and discover that his belief in his country is going to be tested.

The narrative then moves to the Houston brothers, one in the navy and one about to join the infantry and as a result the action starts to move closer to Vietnam. The year is 1966 and Skip, the Houston brothers and thousands of others are being sent into the war zone to make sense of the madness.

More tomorrow…

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