Reviews

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From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

When Lieutenant Kitty McCulley, the central character of this fantasy-adventure novel, almost kills a patient with an overdose of medication, her life as an army nurse in Vietnam spins increasingly out of control. Reassigned to a new hospital unit, Kitty meets an old Vietnamese mystic named Xe. From him she receives an unusual amulet that empowers her to see people's auras (and thus to know their true motives) as well as to heal them. Kitty now begins a spiritual journey wherein she experiences the horrors of war firsthand and comes to understand the special beauty and strength of Vietnam and its simple peasants. Her trials are severe, and home-- once she gets there-- will never be the same. By a former military nurse, this entertaining antiwar novel expertly blends suspense, dark humor, and realism into a powerful, soul-stirring mix that, for the first time, shows the Vietnam War from a woman's perspective. MB.


Publishers Weekly
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A former military nurse in Vietnam, Scarborough turns here from her humorous fantasies ( The Drastic Dragon of Draco, Texas ) to this mostly realistic novel of Army nurse Kathleen McCulley's coming of age. Her tour of duty at China Beach puts the young woman from Kansas through the usual mixture of empathy for the Vietnamese and anger at the indifference or outright racism of army personnel. The unanticipated twist is a hallucinatory journey through the jungle with a one-legged Vietnamese boy, a battle-seasoned but crazy soldier and a magic amulet given her by a dying holy man. Although its moralizing invites comparison with TV's MASH and Twilight Zone , Scarborough's light, fluid storytelling and the authentic, pungent background keep this novel interesting. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

In the thick of war, the life of an army nurse spins out of control after she receives an unusual amulet from the old Vietnamese mystic who was her patient. [BKL N 1 88]