Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Home and Away by David and Nancy French - Giveaway provided

David French picked up the newspaper in the comfort of his penthouse in Philadelphia, and read about a soldier - father of two - who was wounded in Iraq. Immediately, he was stricken with a question: Why him and not me?

This is the story of what happens when a person - rather a family - answers the call to serve their nation. David was a 37-year-old father of two, a Harvard Law graduate and president of a free speech organization. In other words, he was used to pushing pencils, not toting M16s.

His wife Nancy was raising two children and writing from home. She was worrying about field trips and playdates, not about her husband going to war.

HOME AND AWAY chronicles not just a soldier at war, but a family at war - a husband in Iraq, a wife and children at home, greeting each day with hope and fear, facing the challenge with determination, tears, and more than a little joy.

My review:
This was an interesting book to review. It is written from two viewpoints: the wife left at home to raise two children alone while her husband goes off to fight in a war, and the late 30's husband going into the military to do his duty.

I was sent an email by the publicist to ask me to review the book. I tend to mostly review fiction, but this book sounded worth reading, so I agreed to review it. I'm glad I did. It is worth reading.

David and Nancy don't mince words or gloss over anything in this book. It is honest. They tell of the effect his decision had on them separately, on their children, and on their marriage. He tells of his fears, of what it was like to go through training, to land in Iraq for the first time, and of losing a friend in battle.

I came away from this book with a greater appreciation for our military, and also for the family they leave behind. The Frenches paint a great and true picture of a military family, and I enjoyed getting a glimpse into what they went through.

About the authors:

Nancy French grew up in Paris, Tennessee - home of the World's Biggest Fish Fry - but has since lived in Center City Philadelphia and the Gramercy area of Manhattan.

She began her writing career as a Philadelphia City Paper columnist tackling many subjects with a light, humorous touch; her articles have appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, The New York Sun, Newsmax, the Philadelphia Daily News, and National Review Online. An alumna of David Lipscomb University and New York University, Nancy now has moved back south, but this time to Columbia, Tennessee - the Mule Capital of the World - where she lives with her husband, writing collaborator, and co-conspirator David French, and their three children.

She is the author of the new book "Home and Away: A Story of Family in a Time of War" and "Red State of Mind: How a Catfish Queen Reject Became a Liberty Belle." Recently, she collaborated with Bristol Palin on her new memoir, "Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far."

Nancy is the editor of SixSeeds.tv, a pop culture-focused magazine for parents, as well as a columnist and speaker.

David French is a Senior Counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice. A Kentucky native, David is a 1994 graduate (cum laude) of Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts and a 1991 graduate (summa cum laude, valedictorian) of Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee.

David has been a commercial litigation partner for a large law firm, taught at Cornell Law School, served as president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), and currently serves as a Senior Counsel at the American Center for Law and Justice.

He is the author of multiple books, including A Season for Justice: Defending the Rights of the Christian Home, Church, and School and the upcoming Home and Away: The Story of Family in a Time of War.

David is a regular contributor to National Review Online, a columnist for Patheos, and he has written numerous op-eds and articles, including pieces in the Washington Post, Washington Times, Human Events, Townhall, New York Post, New York Daily News, Boston Herald, and Philadelphia Daily News. Regularly interviewed by both print and broadcast media, David has appeared on ABC World News Tonight, The O'Reilly Factor, CNN Newsroom, The Fox Report with Shepard Smith, and Special Report with Brit Hume, among others. A regular guest on talk radio programs, David has been interviewed on National Public Radio and by numerous hosts, including Michael Medved, Hugh Hewitt, Laura Ingraham, Dennis Prager, James Dobson, and Michael Reagan.

David is also a Captain in the United States Army Reserve, joining the USAR in April, 2006. He completed Phase I of the Judge Advocate Officer Basic Course in June, 2006, and Phase II in April, 2007. He has also completed the Judge Advocate Tactical Staff Officer Course. He is currently a Trial Counsel for the 139th Legal Support Organization, Legal Command, in Nashville, Tennessee. From October 2007 to September 2008 CPT French served as Squadron Judge Advocate for the 2d Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment in Diyala Province, Iraq, where he was awarded the Bronze Star at the conclusion of his tour.

David and his wife Nancy have two daughters (ages 12 and 3) and a son (age 10). They live in Columbia, Tennessee.

Read an excerpt from the book here.

The publicist is giving away a copy of Home And Away on my blog. Just comment on this blog post/review to enter. I will pick a winner using Random.org on August 12.
Home and Away is available from Center Street Publishing.
Thanks to the Demoss Group for the review and giveaway copies.


Mozi Esme said...

Not being part of a military family, I'd be fascinated to read how the war personally impacts families...

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

Carmen said...

The impact on families are great. This would be a good resource book to help hurting families. Please enter me.

Linda at:

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I have a cousin in the military and my dad retired from the military...I come from a family of military men (and woman!). Would love to win.

Molly AT reviewsbymolly DOT com

Marjorie/cenya2 said...

So much sadness today for our American soldiers and their families.
I would love to read this book and
learn more.

cenya2 at hotmail dot com

Linda Kish said...

I would love to win a copy of this book.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Unknown said...

My sister is in the air forces, I'd love this for her.

unforgetable_dreamer_always (at) hotmail (dot) com

Steven said...

Looks like a good book. Good review, as always. :)

Annette W. said...

This definitely looks like a worthy read. Though I'm not part of the military, my husband's work is closely related.

derekannette at gmail dot com