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Best Books on Vietnam War

Recommendations from 10 articles, Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Jeremy Clarkson and 13 others.
34 books on the list
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The Things They Carried book cover
The Things They Carried
Tim O'Brien - 2010-03-22 (first published in 1990)
Goodreads Rating
In 1979, Tim O'Brien's Going After Cacciato—a novel about the Vietnam War—won the National Book Award. In this, his second work of fiction about Vietnam, O'Brien's unique artistic vision is again clearly demonstrated. Neither a novel nor a short story collection, it is an arc of fictional episodes, taking place in the childhoods of its characters, ...
Recommended by
Caroline Paul
We Were Soldiers Once...And Young book cover
We Were Soldiers Once...And Young
Ia Drang The Battle That Changed the War in Vietnam
Harold G. Moore - 1992-10-20 (first published in 1991)
Goodreads Rating
Each year, the Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps selects one book that he believes is both relevant and timeless for reading by all Marines. The Commandant's choice for 1993 was We Were Soldiers Once . . . and Young. In November 1965, some 450 men of the 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry, under the command of Lt. Col. Hal Moore, were dropped by helicopt...
The Best and the Brightest book cover
The Best and the Brightest
David Halberstam - 1993-10-26
Goodreads Rating
The Best and the Brightest is David Halberstam's masterpiece, the defining history of the making of the Vietnam tragedy. Using portraits of America's flawed policy makers and accounts of the forces that drove them, The Best and the Brightest reckons magnificently with the most important abiding question of our country's recent history: Why did Amer...
The Sorrow Of War book cover
The Sorrow Of War
A Novel of North Vietnam
Bao Ninh - 1996-04-01 (first published in 1987)
Goodreads Rating
Bao Ninh, a former North Vietnamese soldier, provides a strikingly honest look at how the Vietnam War forever changed his life, his country, and the people who live there. Originally published against government wishes in Vietnam because of its non-heroic, non-ideological tone, The Sorrow of War has won worldwide acclaim and become an international...
Fire in the Lake book cover
Fire in the Lake
The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam
Frances Fitzgerald - 2002-07-17
Goodreads Rating
Frances FitzGerald's landmark history of Vietnam and the Vietnam War, "A compassionate and penetrating account of the collision of two societies that remain untranslatable to one another." (New York Times Book Review)This magisterial work, based on Frances FitzGerald's many years of research and travels, takes us inside the history of Vietnam--the ...
A Bright Shining Lie book cover
A Bright Shining Lie
John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam
Neil Sheehan - 1988-09-12
Goodreads Rating
This passionate, epic account of the Vietnam War centres on Lt Col John Paul Vann, whose story illuminates America's failures & disillusionment in SE Asia. A field adviser to the army when US involvement was just beginning, he quickly became appalled at the corruption of the S. Vietnamese regime, their incompetence in fighting the Communists & thei...
Dispatches book cover
Michael Herr - 1991-08-06 (first published in 1977)
Goodreads Rating
Written on the front lines in Vietnam, Dispatches became an immediate classic of war reportage when it was published in 1977.From its terrifying opening pages to its final eloquent words, Dispatches makes us see, in unforgettable and unflinching detail, the chaos and fervor of the war and the surreal insanity of life in that singular combat zone. M...
Recommended by
Mark Harris
Matterhorn book cover
A Novel of the Vietnam War
Karl Marlantes - 2011-05-10 (first published in 2009)
Goodreads Rating
Winner of the 2010 Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel PrizeIntense, powerful, and compelling, Matterhorn is an epic war novel in the tradition of Norman Mailer's The Naked and the Dead and James Jones's The Thin Red Line. It is the timeless story of a young Marine lieutenant, Waino Mellas, and his comrades in Bravo Company, who are dropped into the mounta...
Recommended by
Jeremy Clarkson
A Rumor of War book cover
A Rumor of War
The Classic Vietnam Memoir (40th Anniversary Edition)
Philip Caputo - 2017-08-01
Goodreads Rating
The 40th-anniversary edition of the classic Vietnam memoir—featured in the PBS documentary series The Vietnam War by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick—with a new foreword by Kevin Powers.In March of 1965, Lieutenant Philip J. Caputo landed at Danang with the first ground combat unit deployed to Vietnam. Sixteen months later, having served on the line in on...
The Sympathizer book cover
The Sympathizer
A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction)
Viet Thanh Nguyen - 2016-04-12
Goodreads Rating
Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, The Sympathizer is a Vietnam War novel unlike any other. The narrator, one of the most arresting of recent fiction, is a man of two minds and divided loyalties, a half-French half-Vietnamese communist sleeper agent living in America after the end of the war.It is April 1975, and Saigon is in chaos. At ...
Recommended by
Bill Gates
Cracker! book cover
Cynthia Kadohata - 2008-10-07
Fields of Fire by James Webb
Vietnam by Stanley Karnow
The Short-Timers by Hasford
Home before Morning by Lynda Van Devanter
Embers of War by Fredrik Logevall
The Girl in the Picture by Denise Chong
The Long Gray Line by Rick Atkinson
Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
The Wall by Eve Bunting
Street Without Joy by Bernard B. Fall
Bloods by Wallace Terry
Dirty Work by Larry Brown
The Making of a Quagmire by David Halberstam
The Vietnam Reader by
On the Frontlines of the Television War by Yasutsune Hirashiki
Patrol by Walter Dean Myers
The Quiet American by Graham Greene
Dereliction of Duty by H. R. McMaster
Close Quarters by Larry Heinemann
An Intimate History of Killing by Joanna Bourke
Year of the Jungle by Suzanne Collins
Dog Soldiers by Robert Stone
Little Cricket by Jackie Brown