It Happened on the Way to War: A Marine's Path to Peace

Rye Barcott, Author
Rye Barcott, Bloomsbury, $26 (352p) ISBN 978-1-60819-217-5
Reviewed on: 01/10/2011
Release date: 03/01/2011
Paperback - 355 pages - 978-1-60819-431-5
Open Ebook - 978-1-60819-501-5
Paperback - 340 pages - 978-1-4088-2823-6
Paperback - 352 pages - 978-1-4088-2431-3
Show other formats
FORMATS
Barcott, cofounder of the nongovernmental organization Carolina for Kibera (CFK), recounts the demands of serving as a Marine Corps officer while running a nascent nonprofit in this overwrought memoir. In 2000, as an undergraduate at the University of North Carolina, the author traveled to Kenya's notorious slum Kibera, in Nairobi, to study ethnic violence. The experience brought his "terribly privileged" background into relief, and Barcott—along with Tabitha Atieno Festo, a nurse, and Salim Mohammed, a community organizer—launched a nonprofit to ferry resources to local leaders in the hopes that they could directly promote development and prevent violence. A year later, with CFK barely launched, Barcott was commissioned as a Marine Corps officer and began an exhausting "balancing act" as he struggled to maintain oversight of CFK while deploying to Bosnia, Djibouti, and Iraq. The author's account of his military service is strained and riddled with inconsistencies: despite his desire "to lead Marines in combat," he angled for an intelligence billet; despite believing the Iraq war was "unjust,"' he volunteered to deploy. Barcott's service to Kibera and his country is laudable, but his memoir promises more insight and candor than it delivers. (Apr.)
The Best Books, Emailed Every Week
Tip Sheet!
MORE BOOKS YOU'D LIKE
X