Tuesday, April 9, 2013

When She Came Home




Frankie Byrne grew up with a military father. She was taught to be respectful. She didn't really have a father however. She never called her father "Dad or daddy". It was either General Byrne or Sir. So it would be no wonder when Frankie grew up that she decided to join the Marines. She left behind her husband and daughter, Glory. Now that Frankie has left, she is trying to adjust to cilivion life again. It is not easy. Frankie and Rick can not agree on anything including how to raise their daughter or what food to buy at the store. To make matters worse, Frankie is suffereing from "posttraumatic stress disorder" (PTSD) but does not want to admit it. Frankie gets a harsh look at reality when she sees how her PTSD is affecting Glory.


While this book may be fiction it does show a raw look into a solider's life after they leave the military. It is sad and affects not just the solider but their family and friends as well. Luckily there is help for PTSD. Anyone who suffers from it or is affected by it I would suggest seeking help. Getting help does not mean you are crazy. It means you won't do something crazy to someone and that someone could be a loved one.

I had both a love/hate relationship with Frankie. On one hand I had an understanding point of view on where she was coming from and why she acted the way she did. However on the other hand Frankie came across as brass and uncaring. Part of the reason she acted the way she did was not just because of the military but also because of her father. He was military and couild not shut this part of him off, so it breed into Frankie. She did things because in some way she was eight again like her daughter just looking for her father's approval and love. As much as Frankie's father was mean towards her and had a giant wall up around him, I almost teared up at the end. It was the most heart felt moment between Frankie and her father that I saw through the whole story. What I did like the most about this book was that it featured a woman Marine. Fans of Army Wives will enjoy this book. This book is a good start to your summer reading, however you don't have to wait until summer to read this book!

Discussion question: General Byrne has clear feelings regarding the roles men and women should play both in the military and at home. How do you feel about his position? When it comes to women serving in the armed forces, is there a double standard? Is there a difference for a child when her mother deploys rather than her father?

My answer: I feel that both men and women should be allowed in the military. Women should be treated with respect when earned just like the men. Times have changed and it is not like it used to be when the war was just about the men and the women stayed home and cooked and cleaned. I think that there will always be a bit of a double standard when it comes to men and women in the military but again times are changing and women are starting to be accepted more into more combat positions. I think there is a slight different when a mother deploys rather then the father. However it is still tramadic to the child either way.

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