Book Review: Coyote Recon: The Forgotten Wars of Colonel Jay D. Vanderpool

Title: Coyote Recon: The Forgotten Wars of Colonel Jay D. Vanderpool
Author: Mike Guardia
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography, Military, War
Year Published: November 25, 2022

Date Started: December 17, 2022
Date finished: December 19, 2022

This story is about Colonel Jay D. Vanderpool, an enlisted army soldier who fought during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. The story follows Colonel Vanderpool from childhood to his years in the army and retirement. This book is written somewhat biographical but includes quite a lot of historical facts and events from the author.

Colonel Vanderpool’s childhood was difficult. He became an orphan at some point and really had to work hard to survive during the Great Depression. Getting enlisted was probably the wisest decision he made for himself. It helped him learn new skills and moved him up in rank, eventually landing him the position of Colonel. He fought in three wars during his time and through it all he was very heroic, doing what was asked of him, and using his own knowledge and skills to do his job well.

What I enjoyed about this story is that I learned about an ordinary soldier’s life, yet he wasn’t ordinary in any sense. Without him and others like him, the U.S. would not be what it is today. I also immensely enjoyed learning the historical facts. These were things I didn’t learn in school and at university, or was just taught the minimal. It was a breath of fresh air to learn more specific details about how and why certain things happened the way they did. For instance, the situation with Pearl Harbor. I don’t want to give any information out (because I think everyone should read this book) but I didn’t realize the timing of FDR’s decision to enter the war and the bombing of Pearl Harbor happened differently than what I’d learned. That was an eye-opener.

Overall, this was a worthwhile read. I’d recommend it to anyone who’s interested in American history and learning about the importance of our soldiers and the military.

Who should read this book: Anyone who enjoys a good biography about war.

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