Tree of Smoke

Johnson, Denis

Book - 2007
Average Rating: 3 stars out of 5.
Tree of Smoke
The lives of Skip Sands, a spy-in-training engaged in psychological operations against the Vietcong, and brothers Bill and James Houston, young men who drift out of the Arizona desert into a war, intertwine in a novel of America during the Vietnam War.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780312427740
Branch Call Number: FICTION JOHNSON
Characteristics: 614 p. ;,24 cm


From Library Staff

This is the story of Skip Sands-spy-in-training, engaged in Psychological Operations against the Vietcong-and the disasters that befall him thanks to his famous uncle, a war hero known in intelligence circles simply as the Colonel

The author presents a vision of human folly, and gritty, sympathetic portraits of men and women desperate for an end to their loneliness, whether in sex or death or by the grace of God.

The story of Skip Sands - spy-in-training, engaged in Psychological Operations against the Vietcong - and the disasters that befall him thanks to his famous uncle, a war hero known in intelligence circles simply as the Colonel.

From the critics

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Apr 21, 2012
  • dccmatthew rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Brilliant writing, a tour de force of poetic evocation of the chaos of any war. Very funny satire (or truth) of the intercises between reality and military intelligence. Think "Deer Hunter" with a wicked sense of fun and devilish humor.

Feb 22, 2012
  • kkelly00 rated this: 1 stars out of 5.

A narrow look at the Vietnam War era, focusing on CIA intrigue and the ruined lives of the characters. Crammed full of swearing, drunken and cynical guys with little insight into any larger context. Anti-communist perspective combined with misplaced religion. I kept reading this very long book because I thought surely someone would have learned something from the war. But everyone crashed and burned.

Apr 12, 2011

2007 - National Book Award - Fiction

Feb 08, 2008 top 25 books of 2007.


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