Need a read with adrenaline? Look no further than thrillers by VCWC members. They’ll make your pulse race.
Jimmy’s a door gunner with a taste for drugs and a talent for combat. He just wants to survive his year in ‘Nam. From a longhaired killer guitar player in a psychedelic band, he’s turned into a real killer in the gun platoon. It’s bad enough when his friends die but back in the World, Gloria, his troubled musical savant girlfriend is in more danger. She can be Sunshine singing for her supper and dazzling music professors or the crowd at an antiwar rally with ease. But she doesn’t like what she’s learning about herself, and the secrets she and Jimmy know could kill them both. Worse, the media thinks Jimmy and the U.S. Army massacred unarmed civilians. A trail of murders stretches from Detroit to Vietnam Beginning with the 1967 Detroit riot and moving to a heart-pounding conclusion during the 1968 Tet Offensive, Purple Sunshine explodes across the world with fast-paced action and unexpected twists.
Purple Sunshine: Sex & Drugs, Rock & Roll, Peace & Love is a work of fiction but seems to be informed by the author’s familiarity with the sixties music scene and the sixties Vietnam War scene.
When Private Jimmy Hayes, a talented guitarist and a band leader back home, gets off the Boeing 707 in Vietnam he comments on the heat and humidity, and “then the smell hit.”
Our hero has left behind his pregnant fifteen-year old girlfriend, Gloria, known as Sunshine. She is being pursued by the Mafia, her wicked stepfather who abused her, and by the police who connect her to a murder she did not commit.
The book presents Jimmy’s wartime experiences and Sunshine’s adventures at home in alternate chapters. Calverley gets high marks for being a gifted storyteller. The home-front chapters are every bit as interesting and exciting as the war chapters are, and there is plenty of violence in both. There are believable villains in both places, too, and a novel like this benefits from having bad guys.
If you are in the mood to read a novel of the late sixties that gives equal time to the home front and to the Vietnam War—and has a lot of violence and even some sex—this might be the book for you. It is well-written and well edited and moves right along. —Vietnam Veterans of America, Books in Review
Hyperventilated Underwater Blues
Rick Short is short. His life’s a mess. Hana, his long gone, much taller girlfriend, has suddenly returned. And carrying dangerous baggage. Did she dump him? Find somebody richer and taller? What about those scars? Then Rick finds a young woman’s body in the Dunbar University swimming pool. Drowned on her 18th birthday. No, murdered. Soon Rick’s in over his head. Right where he wants to be—underwater. Because Rick likes it underwater. It’s cool, silent and when he hyperventilates, he can stay under a long time. And it doesn’t matter if you’re not tall.