Archive - July 13, 2011

Review of Michael S. Orban's Souled Out

Review of Michael S. Orban's Souled Out

Souled Out: A Memoir of War and Inner Peace by Michael S. Orban (Gabon 1976–78) Minuteman Press $17.00 230 pages 2011 Reviewed by Susan O’Neill (Venezuela 1973–74) MICHAEL ORBAN WAS 20 when the US government sent him to Viet Nam as a foot soldier in a politically-motivated undeclared war. He was a Catholic boy from Wisconsin, a thoughtful child who dreamed of traveling to exotic places.  The concept of being killed by the residents of those places — or of killing them to escape that fate — had not been part of his National Geographic scenario. The story of what happened next — of the traumatic return from the trauma of war; of depression, substance abuse, divorce — is familiar to those who have read the writings of former warriors like Tim O’Brien (The Things They Carried) and Robert Mason (Chickenhawk). But Orban’s tale takes an interesting departure from those . . .

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