Across the Barbed Wire:A Novel About the Cold War by James Pocock

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James Pocock
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Book review

Across the Barbed Wire is a historical novel about an East German family attempting to escape to the West in 1964. But tragedy strikes, and Gisela awakens with her infant daughter in an American outpost, to find her husband gone. Her three-year-old son, Dieter has been snatched by border guards in front of American soldiers and returned to East Germany. From that moment she faces a monumental struggle to penetrate the Iron Curtain to find her son.This is also a story of soldiers and their families on both sides of the Iron Curtain. While it follows the fete of Gisela and Dieter, it tracks the lives of an American officer, John Parker, his wife, Gail, and others who become involved with them over the course of the Cold War, the Vietnam War, and Desert Storm. Across the Barbed Wire is an indelible portrait of a mother's faith and a soldier's sense of closure as he looks back on the tumultuous events that impacted the lives of these characters over three decades.Pocock's familiarity with the military and with the places and actions described in the novel gives it an immediacy. It is quite simply, a page-turner. -Martha Bates, Michigan State University Press ...enormously entertaining, fast-paced and gripping. Across the Barbed Wire gives readers a thumbnail history of the Army during the last half of the 20th century, and shows the American soldier as he really is--courageous in war, compassionate in peace and committed to the defense of our nation. I see in the characters the men and women with whom I served over more than three decades. --General (Retired) Carl E. Vuono, Former Army Chief of Staff


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