Why this book?
This book gave me license to bend the truth, the setting, and to use myself, or some bizarre version of myself as a main character. O’Brien is the one who made it okay for me to do whatever the hell I wanted in the stories I wrote. It may not appear to be avant garde writing, but it certainly showed me how to play with convention and storytelling. Like a lot of veteran writers in the last thirty years, I used this book as a template in a lot of ways.
The Things They Carried
Why should I read it?
16 authors picked The Things They Carried as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.
What is this book about?
The million-copy bestseller, which is a ground-breaking meditation on war, memory, imagination, and the redemptive power of storytelling.
'The Things They Carried' is, on its surface, a sequence of award-winning stories about the madness of the Vietnam War; at the same time it has the cumulative power and unity of a novel, with recurring characters and interwoven strands of plot and theme.
But while Vietnam is central to 'The Things They Carried', it is not simply a book about war. It is also a book about the human heart - about the terrible weight of those things we carry through…