The Ravens by Christopher Robbins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This book is a fairly gritty account of the fighting in Laos alongside the war across the border in Vietnam. I had no idea of the true scale of this conflict until I opened this book. I had previously thought it to be merely a fight against relatively small communist insurgent groups who were aiding the North Vietnamese. And, yes whilst this was happening, there was SO much more to the story and this book is one of the places where you'll find some of the facts.
The Ravens were a group of mainly forward air control pilots drawn from the regular forces in Vietnam who signed up for a secret 'not really happening' operation staging out of the top secret Long Tieng base in the Laotian mountains. These guys flew missions to guide air strikes and rescues among other things in their small single-engined Cessna aircraft.
The story is very interesting and full of facts and figures about the war along with some great accounts of the action and the horrors of war. I found it a little fragmented in some places and found that I would occasionally lose my way and had to retrace my steps to get back on track again. That is my only niggle with what is essentially an excellent factual war history story.
A good read and essential if you're into war and military history.
View all my reviews