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Up Country by Nelson DeMille

Up Country (edition 2003)

by Nelson DeMille

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1,447185,181 (3.85)27
Title:Up Country
Authors:Nelson DeMille
Info:Warner Vision (2003), Mass Market Paperback, 880 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Tags:Fiction, Vietnam, Vietnam War, Tome, @D

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Up Country by Nelson DeMille

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The last thing Paul Brenner wanted to do was to return to work for the Army's Criminal Investigative Division, an organization that thanked him for his many years of dedicated service by forcing him into early retirement. ( )
  Tutter | Feb 26, 2015 |
I love Nelson DeMille's books. This one, although not my favorite, was both educational and intriguing to listen to. The narration of Scott Brick lends to the entertainment value of the of the 28 hours of listening. (over 800 pages)The story is about Paul Brenner, a Vietnam vet in retirement from the army's Criminal Investigation Division, who is asked to take on a new assignment of tracking down an eye witness to an officer's death 30 years prior during the Vietnam war. Since Brenner is familiar with Vietnam and has sharp investigative skills he is the "perfect" person to have this assignment, in exchange for a more comfortable pension of course. So off he goes and of course meets a beautiful American business woman who speaks the language and falls for him. As the story unfolds, you find out, as Brenner does, that nothing is as it seems. The travels to find the witness to the death of the officer take Brenner and his lovely "interpreter" Susan, on many dangerous journeys and encounters with very scary Communist "Security " and shocking political secrets. ............The book is long and takes liberties of filling in the reader the history of Vietnam. This went on longer than wanted and found myself wanting to get on with the story. But, I must say, I learned about the effects of Vietnam battles on the minds of those who had to live through it, if indeed they did live. The reader is taken mentally into battle with Brenner as he reminisces/or rather recounts to his partner Susan about what he suppressed from his dark disturbing bloody memories. When your finished with the book, you cant help but have a better understanding of the war vet and for that, I am thankful to Nelson DeMille who himself was a vet as I've read from research. ( )
  gaillamontagne | Nov 20, 2014 |
One of my favorite characters, Paul Brenner, is back from one of my favorite authors. Having pissed off the brass in his last case, see [b:The General's Daughter|98427|The General's Daughter|Nelson DeMille|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1171413224s/98427.jpg|1832579], Paul has been forcibly retired having pissed off a lot of brass His former boss, Colonel Helden, calls him up for a meeting at the Wall where he presents a most interesting proposal. They have a letter from a witness who says he say an army captain shot an army lieutenant in cold blood during the Tet offensive in Vietnam. The army wants the killer identified and punished. So Brenner, in return for a bigger pension and reinstatement, must solve a case that has no body, no apparent motive, no accused, no witnesses except for the letter, a witness who may have died years before, a witness who happens to have been NVA, a killer who may even be dead; a murder that may not even be a murder and which occurred during the midst of a heated battle over thirties years before. Not to mention that the dead man’s name is inscribed on the Wall and his relatives and friends all assume he was killed in battle.
Things are never what they seem, and Brenner learns from his FBI briefing just as he is about to embark on the trip to Vietnam to find the NVA witness, assuming he is still alive, that there are many things the army CID and FBI would rather he not know, but he suspects they want him to locate the man so they can kill him. Just his cup of tea.
Once in Vietnam, Paul meets Susan. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, etc., except that Paul suspects that Susan, who ostensibly works for the Bank of America on trade issues, might also have a connection to the CIA. She and he travel together, her knowledge of Vietnam proving to be invaluable and Paul begins to put some of the pieces together.
Many of the Demille books I have read exist on several levels. One suspects that this book is a much a personal meditation on the war that DeMille served in as an infantry lieutenant. Some of the stories that Paul recounts to Susan are just too real. I think it’s one of the best books I’ve read about our nation’s coming to terms with our Vietnam experience ( )
  ecw0647 | Sep 30, 2013 |
Traveling through Vietnam to relive war memories, and find the witness to a murder. ( )
  scubareader | Sep 8, 2013 |
here's the deal with demille: he's a very mediocre writer but he's more compelling when he writes about the vietnam war, as he does in this book (and others). the story here isn't all that interesting or intriguing, and it certainly could be told in fewer than 860 pages. but the story did hold some worthwhile points about war and about the long lasting effects it has, for the countries involved and also the individuals.

my real problem with demille is that he's a sexist and has no idea that he is. it seems to me that he'd probably be offended by my writing that, because he'd never identify that way, and because he doesn't think he's sexist, he thinks that that gives him the allowance to write sexist things for the sake of humor. (newsflash - racist and sexist things aren't funny, mr. demille.) it's so insidious because his sexism is most likely being read by millions of men (his books are often on the bestseller lists) who also don't think he's sexist. and his books are full of sexist, and sometimes racist, comments made by self-identified chivalrous men who somehow manage to consistently charm younger, attractive women.

two examples (notice the pristine writing):

at the end of a massage given at the hotel he was staying in:
"Finally she turned me over on my back and somehow I'd lost my towel. She was kneeling between my legs, and she pointed to a place she hadn't massaged yet. I had a feeling the shiatsu part of the massage was over.
She said, 'Ten dollar - okay?'
She smiled and nodded encouragingly. 'Yes?'
Give this hotel another star."

(now, his character is a moral, non-sexist guy so he didn't take the lady up on this, but he still finds it acceptable to make that comment.)

and the other:

"Colonel Mang regarded Susan a moment, wondering, I'm sure, why a woman was answering for a man. This country was so sexist, I might like it here."

i'd love to sit down with this guy and explain a few things. ( )
  elisa.saphier | Apr 2, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0446611913, Mass Market Paperback)

In Up Country, Nelson DeMille cannily revives the army career of Chief Warrant Officer Paul Brenner, the cynical, hardworking Criminal Investigation Division man who was forcibly retired after solving the high-profile killing in The General's Daughter. Brenner's called back to investigate the murder of a young army lieutenant by his captain. The catch is, the crime took place during the heat of the Tet Offensive, and the only living witness was a North Vietnamese soldier who described the incident in a 30-year-old letter that has only recently come to light. Soon Brenner, a Vietnam vet, is on an ostensible nostalgia tour of his old stomping grounds. The trip immediately turns dangerous as he heads "up country" to search for the letter writer, accompanied by a gorgeous American businesswoman, who's hiding more than even the smartest CID officer could imagine.

DeMille, who saw his own tour of duty in Vietnam (and even found a letter on a dead Vietnamese soldier), intersperses historical facts and chilling political possibilities with enough local color to provide some serious flashbacks for his fellow veterans. To non-vets the book may seem very long, but the payoff at the end is worth a couple hundred extra pages. --Barrie Trinkle

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:32:29 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Retired Army investigator Paul Brenner is called back into service to investigate the death of a soldier thirty years earlier in Vietnam--a case that stirs up many unpleasant memories.

(summary from another edition)

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