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The Soldier

Mike Bozart

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Book Overview: 

An American soldier in Afghanistan recalls his younger days in rural Minnesota as his life fades. Poppy fields and booby traps.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .It’s a bone-dry, sadly sunny, clear-and-azure-as-it-was-a-millennium-ago, ancient-calm, mild (68ºF; 20ºC), eerily quiet, mid-March (2009) late afternoon in a virtually treeless, rocky, dusty, barren, lunar-looking section of Zabul Province, Afghanistan. MOS [Military Occupational Specialty] Chemical Warfare Specialist (74D) Jake Z. Andersen, a 23-year-old, short and thin, fair-skinned Caucasian American, and Caporal Ion Dinu, a 22-year-old, dark-haired, olive-skinned MOS guard from the Romanian battalion, are heading to the Tarnak River in an MRAP (a Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected vehicle) to take some water samples, as the nearby villagers believe that the Taliban are poisoning the shallow, small-stones-and-dark-brown-sand-bottomed watercourse. Caporal Ion Dinu’s English is limited, but the a II-a and the E-4 American corporal soon strike up a conversation as the rangers tootle down a rough dirt road as Andersen’s 5.56x45 mm M4 carbine bumps up against Dinu’s Pușcă Autom. . . Read More