In Iraq, as a medic and officer, Jon Kerstetter balanced two impossibly conflicting imperatives—to heal and to kill. When he suffered an injury and then a stroke during his third tour, he wound up back home in Iowa, no longer able to be either a doctor or a soldier. In this gorgeous memoir that moves from his impoverished upbringing on an Oneida reservation, to his harrowing stints as a volunteer medic in Kosovo and Bosnia, through the madness of Iraq and his intense mandate to assemble a team to identify the remains of Uday and Qusay Hussein, and the struggle afterward to come to terms with a life irrevocably changed, Kerstetter beautifully illuminates war and survival, the fragility of the human body, and the strength of will that lies within.
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“Kerstetter emotionally describes his recovery, the end of his medical career, and the process of relearning that led to this memoir…Recommended for readers who enjoy war memoirs and for anyone looking for a moving life story.”