sasha press
Father War


Young John Spenser’s mother is obsessed with a world he cannot understand.  She rushes to greet the mailman, is glued to the radio as bulletins crackle from the front, and pours over the newspaper.  But her postwar doldrums bewilder and crush him.  He grows up convinced that his father was an army intelligence officer who disappeared behind enemy lines in Germany.  During the Cold War John too becomes tuned to events overseas.  He listens to the warnings of the experts and decides that his mission in life is much like his father’s -- to be an agent of the free world in the heart of Europe, facing the gathering enemy and poised to sound the alarm.  After a stretch in the army in Vietnam he wins assignment to an intelligence office in Germany where, thwarted in love and disillusioned with his career, he bides his time as a low level civilian employee.  In middle age he returns home and discovers the source of his mother’s exhilaration and her despair, uncovering a side of his father’s war -- and of his parents -- that had been hidden in plain view.


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Father War


Copyright Sasha Press 2014