Diamond Head, Hawaii, 1941. Pvt. Robert E. Lee Prewitt is a champion welterweight and a fine bugler. But when he refuses to join the company's boxing team, he gets "the treatment" that may break him or kill him. First Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden knows how to soldier better than almost... read more
Set in the summer and autumn of 1941 at the Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, this story follows several members of G Company, including Captain Dana Holmes and First Sergeant Milt Warden. The principle protagonist is Private Robert E. Lee Prewitt who only wishes to be a bugler and career soldier. ... read more (warning: may contain spoilers)
Set in the summer and autumn of 1941 at the Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, this story follows several members of G Company, including Captain Dana Holmes and First Sergeant Milt Warden. The principle protagonist is Private Robert E. Lee Prewitt who only wishes to be a bugler and career soldier. Prewitt, however, is an excellent boxer, and Company commander Captain Holmes insists that Prewitt box on the company boxing team. But Prewitt has lost his taste for boxing after blinding a fellow soldier. When Prewitt refuses to box, Captain Holmes orders the Company to apply Company discipline on Prewitt to break his resolve. The story follows how Prewitt deals with this ritual hazing. Among the love affairs that occur, Prewitt falls in love with a Honolulu prostitute, and First Sergeant Warden falls in love with Captain Holmes wife.
“Unofficially, nobody really minded the clap. It was a joke to those who had never had it and to those who had been over it for a while. No worse than a bad cold, they said. Apparently the only time it was not a joke was when you had it. And instead of hurting your unofficial reputation it boosted you a notch, it was like getting a wound stripe. They said that in Nicaragua they used to give out Purple Hearts.But officially it hurt your Service Record, and it automatically lost you your rating. On your papers it put a stigma on you. When he put in to get back in the Bugle Corps, he found that while he was away they had suddenly gone over-strength. He went back on straight duty for the rest of his enlistment.”author
“Prew bit his lips. He got his envelope roll out of the wall locker and the combat pack off the bed foot. He laid them on the floor and opened the light pack. Everyone in the squadroom sat up and watched him silently and speculatively, as they might watch a sick horse upon whose time to die they had gotten up a pool.”author
“This is the song of the men who have no place, played by a man who has never had a place, and can therefore play it. Listen to it. You know this song, remember? This is the song you close your ears to every night, so you can sleep. This is the song you drink five martinis every evening not to hear. This is the song of the Great Loneliness, that creeps in the desert wind and dehydrates the soul. This is the song you'll listen to on the day you die. When you lay there in bed and sweat it out, you know that all the doctors and nurses and weeping friends don't mean a thing and can't help you any, can't save you one small bitter taste of it, because you are the one that's dying and not them; when you wait for it to come and know the sleep will not evade it and martinis will not put it off and conversation will not circumvent it and hobbies will not help you to escape it; then you will hear this song and remembering, recognize it.”author
“"You've killed me. Why'd you want to kill me," he said, and died. The expression of hurt surprise and wounded reproach and sheer inability to understand stayed on his face like a forgotten suitcase left at the station, and gradually hardened there. Prew stood looking down at him, still shocked by the reproving question.”author
Love was not to give oneself, but find oneself, describe oneself. And that the whole conception had been written wrong. Because the only part of any man that he can ever touch or understand is that part of himself he recognizes in him. And that he is always looking for the way in which he can escape his sealed bee cell and reach the other airtight cells with which he is connected in the waxy comb.Highlighted by 6 Kindle customers
Jack Malloy was able to love the human race because he expected ahead-of-time to be let down by his friends and hurt by his enemies and betrayed by his leaders. He saw these things as natural reactions to be anticipated, instead of perfidies to be decried.Highlighted by 6 Kindle customers
That was one of the virtues of being a pessimist: nothing was ever as bad as you thought it would be.Highlighted by 6 Kindle customers
Love either starves to death and becomes a shadow, or else it dies young and remains a dream.Highlighted by 5 Kindle customers
Because it was there, he felt, that the immortality he had not seen was hidden.Highlighted by 5 Kindle customers
“I believe the only sin is a conscious waste of energy. I believe all conscious dishonesty, such as religion, politics and the real estate business, are a conscious waste of energy. I believe that at a remarkable cost in energy people agree to pretend to believe each other’s lies so they can prove to themselves their own lies are the truth,Highlighted by 5 Kindle customers
Life, in time, takes every maidenhead, even if it has to dry it up; it does not matter how the owner wants to keep it.Highlighted by 3 Kindle customers
“Every religion starts at the bottom level, with the whores, publicans, and sinners. Logically, it has to start there, with the dissatisfied. You cant get the satisfied to accept new ideas.Highlighted by 3 Kindle customers
But you could forget anything with solitaire, for a while at least; solitaire was the game of exiles.Highlighted by 3 Kindle customers
Shame aint a spontaneous emotion; shame is an induced emotion. A man who knows his own mind dont know what shame is.”Highlighted by 3 Kindle customers
Followed by The Thin Red Line.
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