100 books like A Patch of Ground

By Michael Archer,

Here are 100 books that A Patch of Ground fans have personally recommended if you like A Patch of Ground. Shepherd is a community of 9,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Unknown Valor: A Story of Family, Courage, and Sacrifice from Pearl Harbor to Iwo Jima

Robert W. Baumer Author Of The Journey of the Purple Heart: A First Infantry Division Soldier’s Story from Stateside to North Africa, Sicily and Normandy during World War II

From my list on war memoirs and what makes them special.

Who am I?

When I was in my early 40’s I walked into the hospital room of a 99-year-old near-death relative who mistook me for my father’s brother who had been killed on the beachhead in Normandy during World War II. I was always a history buff, but this moment changed my life. I directed my energies to military history, starting with memoirs and writing a column for Armchair General magazine when it was in circulation. Published official histories (American Iliad, Aachen, Old Hickory) followed that were reliant on well-expressed memoirs written by participants, so full circle I’ve come back to my passion for writing, and reading war memoirs.

Robert's book list on war memoirs and what makes them special

Robert W. Baumer Why did Robert love this book?

I was putting the finishing touches on my book when I came across Unknown Valor in 2020. Like my book, Martha MacCallum’s was about an uncle she never knew who was killed at Iwo Jima. There was a lot of history about the Pacific Theater, as well as personal stories of those who served with her uncle. Like my book, except mine was about the European theater. Letters her uncle wrote home were sprinkled throughout the book, just like in my book. The anguish of her uncle’s death on his family was beautifully told. Just like I tried to do in my latest book.

A strong recommended read if you want to know more about the fate of soldiers during WWII in the Pacific.

By Martha MacCallum,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unknown Valor as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER.

In honor of the 75th Anniversary of one of the most critical battles of World War II, the popular primetime Fox News anchor of The Story with Martha MacCallum pays tribute to the heroic men who sacrificed everything at Iwo Jima to defeat the Armed Forces of Emperor Hirohito-among them, a member of her own family, Harry Gray.

Admiral Chester Nimitz spoke of the "uncommon valor" of the men who fought on Iwo Jima, one of the bloodiest and most brutal battles of World War II. In thirty-six grueling days, nearly 7,000 Marines were killed and…


Book cover of Enemy North, South, East, West

Robert W. Baumer Author Of The Journey of the Purple Heart: A First Infantry Division Soldier’s Story from Stateside to North Africa, Sicily and Normandy during World War II

From my list on war memoirs and what makes them special.

Who am I?

When I was in my early 40’s I walked into the hospital room of a 99-year-old near-death relative who mistook me for my father’s brother who had been killed on the beachhead in Normandy during World War II. I was always a history buff, but this moment changed my life. I directed my energies to military history, starting with memoirs and writing a column for Armchair General magazine when it was in circulation. Published official histories (American Iliad, Aachen, Old Hickory) followed that were reliant on well-expressed memoirs written by participants, so full circle I’ve come back to my passion for writing, and reading war memoirs.

Robert's book list on war memoirs and what makes them special

Robert W. Baumer Why did Robert love this book?

Imagine being 20 years old, and a freshly minted lieutenant with just two weeks in the line. You are a forward observer for a 105mm artillery battalion. Your first duty position is atop a 314-meter-high hill at Mortain France. It is early August 1944 and Adolf Hitler sends four panzer divisions to Mortain to stop the Allied breakout from Normandy. First they must take that hill.

Weiss’s stunning book details how he and 700 other men held Hill 314 for five long days. Chronicled more recently by an Aurora Award-winning documentary on PBS it is one of those World War II personal memoirs one never forgets.

By Robert Weiss,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Enemy North, South, East, West as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When the Germans launched their biggest counter-attack in France during WWII, the elite troops of the 2nd SS Panzer Division surrounded a battalion of less than 700 US infantry on top of a key hill near Mortain in Normandy. The American "Lost Battalion", equipped with very little food, medical supplies, ammunition, or anti-tank weapons, held out for sixty days. At the end of the battle, 277 of the riflemen were dead, wounded, or missing. Author Robert Weiss experienced those harrowing days of the war, directing much of the fire as a field artillery forward observer on the hill. As the…


Book cover of Conquered, Not Defeated: Growing Up in Denmark During the German Occupation of World War II

Robert W. Baumer Author Of The Journey of the Purple Heart: A First Infantry Division Soldier’s Story from Stateside to North Africa, Sicily and Normandy during World War II

From my list on war memoirs and what makes them special.

Who am I?

When I was in my early 40’s I walked into the hospital room of a 99-year-old near-death relative who mistook me for my father’s brother who had been killed on the beachhead in Normandy during World War II. I was always a history buff, but this moment changed my life. I directed my energies to military history, starting with memoirs and writing a column for Armchair General magazine when it was in circulation. Published official histories (American Iliad, Aachen, Old Hickory) followed that were reliant on well-expressed memoirs written by participants, so full circle I’ve come back to my passion for writing, and reading war memoirs.

Robert's book list on war memoirs and what makes them special

Robert W. Baumer Why did Robert love this book?

In Europe it is a tradition to pass down from generation to generation the stories of survival during the German occupation of their countries. I have met some families that actually traveled to the United States to attend military reunions of the units who freed their homelands back in 1944-45. 

Tveskov takes you into the terrifying world of Copenhagen during the war and remembers it through the eyes and experiences of a young boy. His book makes one appreciate how G.I. Joe came to be loved by so many Europeans.

By Peter H. Tveskov,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Conquered, Not Defeated as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On the morning of April 9, 1940, Peter Tveskov awoke to the roar of airplanes flying low overhead—more airplanes than he’d ever heard or seen before. The invasion leading to the five-year German occupation of Denmark had begun. The Occupation was a dark and difficult time for the Danish people, but for five-year-old Peter, it was an exciting adventure that would in many ways shape both his future and that of his beloved country.

In Conquered, Not Defeated, Peter Tveskov blends vivid childhood memories with historical fact to tell the story of how the occupying army of the Third Reich…


Book cover of One More Hill

Robert W. Baumer Author Of The Journey of the Purple Heart: A First Infantry Division Soldier’s Story from Stateside to North Africa, Sicily and Normandy during World War II

From my list on war memoirs and what makes them special.

Who am I?

When I was in my early 40’s I walked into the hospital room of a 99-year-old near-death relative who mistook me for my father’s brother who had been killed on the beachhead in Normandy during World War II. I was always a history buff, but this moment changed my life. I directed my energies to military history, starting with memoirs and writing a column for Armchair General magazine when it was in circulation. Published official histories (American Iliad, Aachen, Old Hickory) followed that were reliant on well-expressed memoirs written by participants, so full circle I’ve come back to my passion for writing, and reading war memoirs.

Robert's book list on war memoirs and what makes them special

Robert W. Baumer Why did Robert love this book?

I found this original edition, published in 1949, in a used bookstore back in the early 1990s. It was the first memoir I read about a soldier and the higher-up officers he reported to who fought in the same regiment as my late uncle. 

Johnson contributed to two books I wrote on the official history of the 18th Infantry Regiment in World War II. His was a personal memoir up to the time his war was cut short after the Normandy Invasion. The writing style is sweeping and one of the better memoirs I’ve read about an anti-tank battalion during the big war.

By Franklin A. Johnson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked One More Hill as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The author describes his experiences as a lieutenant in the First Infantry Division during its actions in Africa, Sicily and the Normandy invasion


Book cover of Last Stand at Khe Sanh: The U.S. Marines' Finest Hour in Vietnam

John Podlaski Author Of Cherries: A Vietnam War Novel

From my list on about the Vietnam War.

Who am I?

I served as an infantryman in Vietnam with both the 25th ID and the 101st Airborne. Curiosity about what other units did during the war drove me to read about their exploits and learn about what else took place outside of my little part of the war. I am also the admin of a website dedicated to the Vietnam War and its Warriors. My intent over the last eleven years is to educate the public and continue our legacy.  

John's book list on about the Vietnam War

John Podlaski Why did John love this book?

The Last Stand at Khe Sanh was an intriguing read that documented the 77-day siege of the Marine basecamp. It seems like the author took the after-action reports about the events and then humanized the report and breaking it down to squad-level action to make it more readable. I especially like how he listed names of personnel and followed them through the battle where they either portrayed valor or shows how they died. My close friend, Doc Cecala was wounded during an ambush while on a patrol with B 1/26; most of his platoon was killed and at least half of the second which came to reinforce them. Shot in the shoulder and legs, he managed to crawl back to the gates of the firebase and be rescued.

The book also does justice to the hill fights surrounding the base, showing how they worked through their difficulties: ground attacks, incoming,…

By Gregg Jones,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Last Stand at Khe Sanh as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Last Stand at Khe Sanh is a vivid, fast-paced account of the dramatic 1968 confrontation, when 6,000 US Marines held off 30,000 North Vietnamese Army regulars at a remote mountain stronghold. Based on extensive archival research and more than 100 interviews with participants, author Gregg Jones captures the courage and camaraderie of the defenders and delivers the fullest account yet of this epic battle.


Book cover of Stories of Faith and Courage from World War II

Karen Whiting Author Of Stories of Faith and Courage from the Home Front

From my list on unknown facts about women American patriots.

Who am I?

My passion for this topic is my background as a military wife, daughter, sister, niece, and mother of men and women who served. I'm also a descendant of men who fought in the American Revolution and women who remained strong on the home front. Moving around the country as a military wife and mother gave me an inside understanding of some of the hardships and difficulties faced by women throughout American history. It’s important to share how women helped shaped this country and supported the military men and women who fought for the freedoms we have and need to continue to preserve. I've been weaving in historical stories into my current devotional series and articles.

Karen's book list on unknown facts about women American patriots

Karen Whiting Why did Karen love this book?

Larkin has written several historical nonfiction books, especially in the Battlefield and Blessing series. His accuracy to history that shares the faith of the individuals and their stories makes reading about the war captivating. More than a researcher and author, Larkin is a decorated hero of the Vietnam War. He knows the struggles of war firsthand. My husband also served during Vietnam and my uncle served during the Korean war, so I find authors who lived what they write about have a special connection and depth in their writing.

By Larkin Spivey, Jocelyn Green,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Stories of Faith and Courage from World War II as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The primary goal of Stories of Faith & Courage from World War II is to strengthen the faith of its readers by showing the power of others’ faith under the most extreme circumstances imaginable. This is accomplished through 365 one-page stories from America’s greatest conflict presented in a daily devotional format with relevant scripture readings for each day of the year. Additionally, the book presents a unique and concise history of World War II with summaries, maps, and photographs of the major campaigns of the war. On this level, the individual stories provide insights into the war and combat not…


Book cover of Waltzing with the Dragons

Jayne Anne Phillips Author Of Night Watch

From my list on mothers and daughters and the trauma of war.

Who am I?

Born into a powerfully matrilineal family (my mother chose my name when she was twelve) in small town Appalachia, I believe that we inherit our parents’ unresolved emotional dilemmas as well as their physical characteristics, and that the sensual elements of places our families may have inhabited for generations are “bred in the bone.” I’ve always said that history tells us the facts, but literature tells us the story. I’m a language-conscious writer who began as a poet, so that each line has a beat and a rhythm. Words awaken our memories and the powerful unconscious knowledge we all possess. The reader meets the writer inside the story: it’s a connection of mind and heart. 

Jayne's book list on mothers and daughters and the trauma of war

Jayne Anne Phillips Why did Jayne love this book?

I loved Waltzing With The Dragons for its autobiographical sense of history and description of mother/daughter bonds that are truly universal. 

The story begins in 1922 with Ly, the daughter of one of the last Mandarins in north Vietnam, who flees an arranged marriage at thirteen to stay with her father’s friends, a French couple, and lives through the WWII Japanese occupation, finally fleeing to the South where she falls in love with a French Army doctor and gives birth to a daughter, Mai-Tam, in 1952. 

Mai-Tam, who is Eurasian and never feels she belongs, grows up in the shadow of the American-Vietnam war. The novel ends in 1967, preserving a mother-daughter kinship that sustains migration and separation. 

By Juliette Mai Triozon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Waltzing with the Dragons as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Waltzing with the Dragons is the true story of a Vietnamese woman and her Eurasian daughter.Born in 1922 in the north of Vietnam, under French colonial rule, Ly was the daughter of one of the last Mandarins, a childhood friend of Ho Chi Minh. After she rebelled against her family, by refusing an arranged marriage at thirteen, she was sent to live with her father’s best friends, a French couple. It was the beginning of a life-long love affair with French culture and lifestyle. At seventeen, she married a French army officer who, shortly there after, was killed in action.…


Book cover of The Mountains Sing

Betty Bolte Author Of Becoming Lady Washington

From my list on historical fiction about emotionally strong women.

Who am I?

I “discovered” historical fiction when a teen and have devoured it ever since. When my parents took me to the Cowpens National Battlefield in South Carolina in 9th grade, I realized just how much I enjoyed learning about history in real life. I found that reading historical fiction breathed life into what can be a very dull read, so I wanted to bring history to life with my own words. Visiting historical properties has become a big passion of mine! Every trip I take includes a visit to some historical site or another. I’ve been writing historical fiction/romance/fantasy since the late 1990s.

Betty's book list on historical fiction about emotionally strong women

Betty Bolte Why did Betty love this book?

This story is set in Việt Nam and paints a clear picture of the people who lived there in the 1930-1980 timeframe of the story. The family faced hardships and tragedies, including being separated for several months when they were forced to flee for their lives. One thing I really appreciated was seeing the impact and impressions of the Việt Nam war on the people of that country. My brother fought over there—he was a Ranger in the Army—during that conflict and came home very different. In fact, he’s estranged himself from the family for the past 30+ years. Reading about the conflict from the other side gives me a clearer idea of what he might have seen or done that he never would tell me about.

By Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Mountains Sing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Years later in Ha Noi, her young granddaughter, Huong, comes of age as her parents and uncles head off down the Ho Chi Minh Trail to fight in a conflict that tore not just her beloved country, but her family apart.

Vivid, gripping, and steeped in the language and traditions of Viet Nam, The Mountains Sing brings to life the human costs of this conflict from the point of view of the Vietnamese people themselves, while showing us the true power of kindness and hope.

The Mountains Sing is celebrated Vietnamese poet Nguyen Phan Que Mai's first novel in English.


Book cover of Fields of Fire

Joe Salem Author Of Arrow Storm: A Modern Pacific War Technothriller

From my list on how future near peer combat will look.

Who am I?

My father retired from the Navy, and I always assumed I’d go into the Navy. When my fellow geeks were playing Dungeons and Dragons, I was playing naval combat wargames. I did enlist as a nukee, but I was only 17 and my father wouldn’t sign the papers. He wanted me to get a degree first. I finally did enlist as a mechanic in the ANG to pay for school, I never did go to OCS, but I always kept my passion and interest in naval history and combat. History has now come full turn, and many of the same issues in the Pacific are coming to the fore again.

Joe's book list on how future near peer combat will look

Joe Salem Why did Joe love this book?

When I wrote my first book, I thought long and hard about what land combat would look like to a soldier or marine.

When my brother came back from AF tech school, he gave me the book Fields of Fire by Jim Webb (A platoon commander in Vietnam). Although it is fiction, it reads like it could be memoir, but moving smoothly from the point of view of each of the three main characters.

The characters are written so deeply and deftly that it was possible to identify with any one of them. The storytelling is so deep and immersive, one feels like you are in Vietnam, slapping at insects and feeling the heat and the rain.

The concussion of 155mm artillery and the stench and fear of battle. It is imagery that has stuck with me for 40 years.

By James H Webb,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Fields of Fire as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Hailed as the most important novel to emerge from the Vietnam War when first published in 1978, this book launched a spectacular writing career for James Webb that now includes four bestselling novels. A much-decorated former Marine who fought and was wounded in Vietnam, Webb tells the story of a platoon of tough, young Marines enduring the tropical hell of Southeast Asian jungles while facing an invisible enemy--in a war no one understands. Filled with the sounds and smells of combat, it is nevertheless a book about people, an amazing variety of closely observed characters caught up in circumstances beyond…


Book cover of Phase Line Green: The Battle for Hue, 1968

William W. Stilwagen Author Of VIETNAM War SPEAK: The Distinctive Language of the Vietnam Era

From my list on the Vietnam War from a Marone who served there.

Who am I?

I served in Vietnam in 1969 carrying a radio on my back with the 12th Marines on the DMZ. In 1970, I was a door gunner with HMM-364 (Purple Fox Squadron) out of Marble Mountain. Beginning in 1996, I have led 68 tours for veterans, their family members, historians, active-duty military personnel, and others to the jungles, mountains, and battlefields of Vietnam. I currently serve as president and bush guide for the non-profit tour company, Vietnam Battlefield Tours. As an avid reader of non-fiction books on the Vietnam experience, this knowledge base has helped tremendously in my non-profit volunteer service.

William's book list on the Vietnam War from a Marone who served there

William W. Stilwagen Why did William love this book?

It is rare when an actual participant of a battle can produce such a chilling and accurate narrative that keeps a reader’s attention page after page. This was the Tet Offensive urban battle for the Citadel, a walled city containing a labyrinth of buildings and houses jammed around numerous narrow streets. This was city fighting at its worst. In the end, many thousands of the enemy lay dead.

By Nicholas Warr,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Phase Line Green as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The bloody, month-long battle for the Citadel in Hue during 1968 pitted U.S. Marines against an entrenched, numerically superior North Vietnamese Army force. By official U.S. accounts it was a tactical and moral victory for the Marines and the United States. But a survivor's compulsion to square official accounts with his contrasting experience has produced an entirely different perspective of the battle, the most controversial to emerge from the Vietnam War in decades.

In some of the most frank, vivid prose to come out of the war, author Nicholas Warr describes with urgency and outrage the Marines' savage house-to-house fighting,…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in the Vietnam War, Vietnam, and United States Marines?

9,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about the Vietnam War, Vietnam, and United States Marines.

The Vietnam War Explore 221 books about the Vietnam War
Vietnam Explore 144 books about Vietnam
United States Marines Explore 25 books about United States Marines