I just finished the book, 15 Years of War: How the Longest War in U.S. History Affected a Military Family in Love, Loss, and the Cost Of Service by Kristine Schellhaas.
This book wasn’t just good, it was truly amazing! The story of a couple going through the last 15 years of war. I think each military spouse has a story to tell about her time during deployments and dealing with military life in general. This is Kristine’s story and one that I am so glad she shared with the world.
Kristine and her husband Ross met in 1996. He is in the US Marine Corps. The couple married in 2002 and started their married lives in Southern California.
The book takes you through so much of their lives during the last 15 years. From Ross’ training to setting up in a new place and learning what it means to be a military spouse. From moving to San Diego to Georgia to Twenty-Nine Palms to Camp Pendleton to Virgina and back again.
Ross was deployed several times throughout the years and I am so thankful his stories were a part of the book. My husband was in Iraq and Afghanistan too and although they had different jobs and were in different branches and roles, hearing what he went through helped me understand more about what my own husband went through during those years.
The book brings us through Kristine’s pregnancies, the births of her children and the loss of her son. Something that is so hard for so many of us to understand. This book was so real. Kristine and Ross were able to share with us their thoughts and feelings about everything that happened to them.
One aspect of the book that I really enjoyed was that they included their emails to one another. Some of them were fun and had a joking tone, others were more serious. This is so much what it is like to have a deployed spouse. You pour out your heart in an email and then get frustrated that it was an email and not over dinner.
The book goes back and forth between Ross and Kristine giving us the perspective of both. Sometimes they would both talk about the same situation and the same event but from their own point of view.
This book is beyond amazing. For anyone who has been through deployments, you will relate to so much in this book. For anyone that has gone through extra difficult situations in military life, you will relate to this book. For the general public that are not associated with the military, you should read this book too. It will give you a picture of what it is like for military families in the last 15 years of war.
- I was given a free copy of this book for review.