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Publisher Description

The 40th anniversary edition of the classic Vietnam memoir—featured in the PBS documentary series The Vietnam War by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick—with a new foreword by Kevin Powers

In March of 1965, Lieutenant Philip J. Caputo landed at Danang with the first ground combat unit deployed to Vietnam. Sixteen months later, having served on the line in one of modern history’s ugliest wars, he returned home—physically whole but emotionally wasted, his youthful idealism forever gone.

A Rumor of War is far more than one soldier’s story. Upon its publication in 1977, it shattered America’s indifference to the fate of the men sent to fight in the jungles of Vietnam. In the years since then, it has become not only a basic text on the Vietnam War but also a renowned classic in the literature of wars throughout history and, as the author writes, of "the things men do in war and the things war does to them."

"Heartbreaking, terrifying, and enraging. It belongs to the literature of men at war." —Los Angeles Times Book Review

May 13
Henry Holt and Co.

Customer Reviews

Landfilll ,

A rumor of war

Hands down the best war accounts ever written by a soldier on the ground. Caputo has an uncanny way of making the reader feel as if they were there. The way he describes the sights, sounds and smells of war really give you a sense of what it was like to be in the quagmire of Vietnam. I highly recommend this book to anyone that is interested in seeing what it was like to be a grunt in the violent world of the vietnam war

Kristin ,


This was assigned reading in my college history class. I loved it so much that I’ve read it an additional three times and recommended it to anyone that would listen.

brutom ,

Caputo got it right

I was there, and many times while reading his book, I had to put it down, thinking, "Yeah, that's how it was, how I felt, how it went." I've read a lot of books about Vietnam; none better than this one.

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