With the recent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, once again America's men and women who have seen war close-up are suddenly expected to return seamlessly to civilian life. In Flashback, Penny Coleman tells the cautionary and timely story of posttraumatic stress disorder in the hope that we can sensitively assist those veterans who return from combat in need of help, and the families struggling to support them.
This book is long overdue and should be mandatory reading for all those who have seen combat, including in Iraq, and for those who love them and live with them.—Margaret Ferguson, national board chair of the Gold Star Wives of America
"A tautly argued study…Coleman chillingly reveals the hidden cost of war. Further, with force and conviction, she shows how the U.S. military has systematically denied and cynically managed the psychic impact of war on its soldiers . . . [Flashback] will surely generate further attention to a sadly timely subject." —Publishers Weekly
"Well-crafted, insightful…With this book, an important subject is hidden no longer."—Marc Leepson, The VVA Veteran
"Flashback is a remarkable combination of painful experience and thoughtful interpretation. The descriptions of suicides of Vietnam veterans by women who loved them, together with a wide-ranging exploration of war and trauma, provide a new and original perspective on Vietnam. Coleman concludes with a moving plea that 'we accept the truth that war itself is an illness that sickens our society as surely and in much the same way as it sickens our citizens and our soldiers.' Few authors have done more to confront that sickness as a step toward cure."—Dr. Robert Jay Lifton, author of Home from the War
"A well-researched and well-documented publication with a uniquely human touch." —Library Journal, starred review
Penny Coleman, the author of Village Elders, lives with her family in New York City.