The story of the Vietnam veteran you’ve never read before!
Donkey Simpson, a typically naive young Australian, thrust into uniform by his country, sets out on the adventure of a lifetime – or so he thinks. But Vietnam is not what he expected. It’s a horror story. It’s a story over which he has no control, at first a ‘typical Army stuff-up’ which wrenches him this way and that, like a puppet soldier on a string, and then something far more dangerous and sinister threatens to destroy him – but who’s pulling the strings?
Best We Forget is the story of Simpson and his mates, caught in a war between powerful ideologies which none of them understood. They walk the fine line of sanity, swinging wildly between love and hate, pathos and humour, patriotism and treason, life and pointless death.
Donkey Simpson’s story is centred around the Public Relations Office of the Australian contingent, and a spy in the nearby Intelligence Office – a spy of unclear loyalties, working for the South Vietnamese allies, working for the enemy, or working only for survival?
The novel has its ugly aspects – most soldiers’ lack of respect for the Vietnamese, whether ally or enemy, the callous disregard for human life, and the treachery practised on both sides.
But it is not all ugly. The simple Christmas wishes of an Australian soldier in the front line, the commitment, no matter how strained, to loved ones back home and the special loyalty of mateship which is part of being in uniform throughout the world.
215 x 138 mm
ISBN 0 9587718 9 8
RRP $aud 21.95
Bernard Clancy was a cadet journalist when his marble came out in the National Service lottery in 1966. He served in Vietnam as private secretary to the Australian Commander-in-Chief as well as in Army PR.
He later joined the Melbourne Sun newspaper, where he became a senior executive journalist and columnist, completing his service with the Herald and Weekly Times as Group Foreign Editor.
In 1988 he established his own corporate communications company advising major Australian and international companies, professional organisations and governments. In recent years Bernard has written major feature articles for The Age as well as for various magazines. Part of his “time out” is spent testing power boats for magazines.
Best We Forget is Bernard’s first novel, based on his experiences in Vietnam. He is also the author of a play, Foxholes of the Mind, the subject of which is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the military sense.
Bernard currently lives on the Bellarine Peninsula in Victoria, where he is working on a second novel.