The book chronicles his enlistment, flight training, deployment to and experiences in Vietnam, and his experiences after returning from the war. He began writing Chickenhawk on May 17, while living in Florida. The first chapter written became the fifth chapter in the finished book. By February , Mason had a page partial manuscript about one-third , and an outline of the rest of his memoir.

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As a child, Robert Mason dreamed of levitating. As a young man, he dreamed of flying helicopters - and the U. Army gave him his chance. They sent him to Vietnam where, between August and July , he flew more than 1, assault missions.

In Chickenhawk, Robert Mason gives us a devastating bird's eye-view of that war in all its horror, as he experiences the accelerating terror, the increasingly desperate courage of a man 'acting out the role of a hero long after he realises that the conduct of the war is insane,' says the New York Times, 'And we can't stop ourselves from identifying with it.

It should have put me off for life. Robert Mason tells a gripping account of the relentless courage and heroism amidst the insanity of the Vietnam war. This isn't an easy read, at times it is quite harrowing but it is nevertheless very interesting.

Mason vividly recalls his time as a helicopter pilot during the Vietnam war. Like countless others, he was not Read this way back in when it was first published - it was so good that I can remembr it now 20 plus years later.

If your interest is "US and "Nam" this is a book for you - well worth it. It's been many years since I read this book by Robert Mason but it is so memorable. From his dream of flying, particularly helicopters, through his training, Vietnam, and his dreadful life afterwards. I was Please sign in to write a review. If you have changed your email address then contact us and we will update your details.

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The actual condition of being a helicopter pilot in Vietnam in ""--as narrated, in an unremarkable but sometimes The actual condition of being a helicopter pilot in Vietnam in ""--as narrated, in an unremarkable but sometimes effectively plain style, by Vietnam vet Mason. The narrative starts with the rigors of flight school, then moves to Fort Benning: ""When they announced that we must turn in all our underwear to have it dyed olive green, and that we were to paint our flight helmets the same color, we knew the time was near. But soon he was flying a ""Huey"" without guns a ""slick"" , carrying troopers into landing zones, dropping ammo. I had become efficient, numb, or stupid.

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