PLAYING ARMY

 

PLAYING ARMY

Nancy Stroer


GENRE:  UpLit / domestic war





It’s 1995 and the Army units of Fort Stewart, Georgia are gearing up to deploy to Bosnia, but Lieutenant Minerva Mills has no intention of going to war-torn eastern Europe. Her father disappeared in Vietnam and, desperate for some kind of connection to him, she’s  determined to go on a long-promised tour to Asia. But the Colonel will only release her on two conditions—that she reform the rag-tag Headquarters Company so they’re ready for the peacekeeping mission, and that she get her weight within Army regs, whichever comes second. Min only has one summer to kick everyone’s butts into shape but the harder she plays Army, the more the soldiers—and her body—rebel. If she can’t even get the other women on her side, much less lose those eight lousy pounds, she’ll never have another chance to stand where her father once stood in Vietnam, feeling what he felt. The Colonel may sweep her along to Bosnia or throw her out of the Army altogether. Can you fake it until you make it? Min is about to find out.




Enjoy an Excerpt:


I turned to look, but before I could see, before I could process what was happening, brakes squealed and treads strained against their forward trajectory. A tracked vehicle did not turn on a dime when hemmed in by trees. Washburn had climbed into the passenger side of my Humvee to get on the radio and his helmet and Reyes’s—awake now and likewise silhouetted against the brightness—were turned toward an armored personnel carrier that burst from between the trees straight at them.


Bright lights made a fuzzy arc in the smoke, then the APC plowed into the vinyl side of the Humvee. There was a sickening crunch, the sound of armor hitting the thin, metal-framed doors. The Humvee lurched forward into the back corner of the deuce, pushed by the much larger vehicle. The deuce moved, too, then halted the Humvee’s momentum.


I froze. It took a full five seconds for the cicadas to recover, to begin screaming into the night, although an engine fan was still running somewhere. Those five seconds were so dense I could hear the Brownian noise of molecules struggling for space. Then someone was screaming in a language I didn’t know. Maybe Reyes? Screaming in Tagalog? Robinson emerged from the cab of the deuce and stumbled toward me on the trail but I motioned her back. “Lay on the horn,” I said. “Fuck light and noise discipline. Turn on the headlights and don’t stop blasting the horn until somebody turns up.”




About the Author:



Nancy Stroer grew up in a very big family in a very small house in Athens, Georgia and served in the beer-soaked trenches of post-Cold War Germany. She holds degrees from Cornell and Boston University, and her work has appeared in the Stars and Stripes, Soldiers magazine, Hallaren Lit Mag, Wrath-Bearing Tree, and Things We Carry Still, an anthology of military writing from Middle West Press.


She’s a teacher and a trainer, and an adjunct faculty member of the Ellyn Satter Institute, a 503(c) not-for-profit that helps individuals and families develop a more joyful relationship to food and their bodies. Playing Army is her first novel.


Social media links:

 

https://twitter.com/Nancy_Stroer

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/49311942.Nancy_Stroer https://www.facebook.com/nancy.stroer/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/nancy-stroer-86213089/





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Comments

  1. Thank you so much for hosting Playing Army today! I'm happy to answer any questions readers might have about it!

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  2. Thank you so much for featuring PLAY ARMY today.

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  3. The blurb and excerpt sound really good. Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Marcy - have you ever been around the military?

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  4. Sounds like a unique read. Intrigued

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! Please let me know if you end up reading it! I'd love to hear your thoughts.

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  5. "Domestic War" caught my attention.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Mary, I don't think it was a tag I chose, but it does describe a lot of what happens in the book!

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  6. Sounds like a very interesting read. Thank you for the excerpt! :)

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  7. Super interesting read, bet there are many exciting bits. Cheers.

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