I’ve been fortunate enough to read some great
books over the years, as well as some superb series, but it is not often one
witnesses an anomaly such as this: a trilogy which produces three works of genuine
quality; Glyn Haynie concludes his Promises…
Vietnam War trilogy with this more outright thriller – and it is another cracker.
Ten years on from Return to the Madness,
Eddie is still haunted by nightmares of his traumatic tours of duty, and still
vowing revenge against his cruel captor Lieutenant Dang – a fire relit by a
simple, fortuitous newspaper article about Vietnamese refugees in the U.S. While the action now moves Stateside, into
the immigrant communities of Texas, and this instalment in the saga veers more
openly toward a mainstream action genre, it by no means steers away from the
author’s trademarks: its real depth and poignancy into the Vietnam War. It remains loyal to its documentary roots,
resisting the urge to move into pure action territory; there is plenty of military
backstory and reference, as well as a profound look into the plight and
progress of the Vietnamese “boat people” – refugees who made their way to the U.S.
after the conflict, to claim their “reparations” of a better life. Additionally, Glyn has done what he does best:
presented the short-, mid- and long-term effects of this horrid conflict on its
participants, of both sides; some old faces return – perhaps with a touch more
weight on their shoulders than before.
There are many layers to Revenge is Coming, as well as a closer
look at the brutality of its primary antagonist. It may have moved its narrative to the
States, but it remains unambiguously a Vietnam War book.
Glyn has managed a wonderful achievement: to
create a top-quality trilogy, which evolves as it continues, yet remains
consistently good throughout, and Revenge is Coming is its very worthy,
realistic and thought-provoking conclusion.
Glyn has undoubtedly become one of my favourite authors, with a natural
talent for both fiction and non-fiction, and I hope the Promises… saga brings
him the recognition he deserves.
In : Book Reviews