Category Archives: Praise for Seven in a Jeep

A Great Review from The Ohio Book Review

A very flattering review of Seven in a Jeep was published recently on The Ohio Book Review blog. The kind words from writer James Nickras are greatly appreciated. You can check out the review here, and follow The Ohio Book Review through its Twitter feed.

“A mostly apolitical work, Seven in a Jeep avoids any real discussion of why the US military was engaged in combat against the North Vietnamese forces, instead using both the war and the military bureaucracy as darkly comic foils. From fake reports about flies, to incompetent fresh lieutenants put in charge of seasoned veterans, to minesweepers holding their helmets on with one hand for Army protocol, while sweeping for mines with the other, the war seemed to be more about regulations, protocol, and more regulations than anything else, and soldiers fought the rules just as much as they were fighting the Vietnamese. In this sense, Seven in a Jeep is reminiscent of Richard Hooker’s M.A.S.H.

Praise from Author Belinda Nicoll

Belinda Nicoll, author of Out of Sync, posted a fantastic review of Seven in a Jeep to her website:  An excerpt:

“Written in vignette style, this war story is easy to read. As Gaydos advances from military training to combat service at Landing Zone Sherry, a grim artillery firebase in Vietnam’s Central Highlands, his values about the sanctity of life quickly transforms to a willingness to kill. But the author seemingly doesn’t take himself too seriously and it’s as easy to laugh at his insights about the day-to-day boredom as his witty accounts of the terrifying mortar attacks on their base…Seven in a Jeep is a great book!” – Belinda Nicoll, author of Out of Sync.

Read the rest of Belinda’s exploration of Ed’s book here.

Thank you Belinda for your kind words!

Seven in a Jeep is a great book!

Praise from Columbus Dispatch Editor Mike Curtin

Retired editor of The Columbus Dispatch and current Ohio state representative Mike Curtin sent us some wonderful praise of Seven in a Jeep.

“Ed Gaydos has a razor wit, a radar for the absurd and a scholar’s precision. Seven in a Jeep, his Vietnam memoir, is the work of a gifted storyteller.” – Mike Curtin, retired editor, The Columbus Dispatch

Thank you, Mr. Curtin, for your kind words!

Kind Words From New York Times Best-Selling Author Rusty McClure

New York Times Best-Selling Author Rusty McClure had some really nice things to say about Seven In A Jeep recently:

“Ed Gaydos brings to life the guys at the listening end of Adrian Cronauer’s Good Morning Vietnam radio shows – authentically – because he was there. A tough time in America and a tougher time for the guys who shipped out is pictured here, richly and with heart.”

Much appreciated, sir! Rusty’s books, including Crosley: Two Brothers and a Business Empire That Transformed the Nation, can be found here:

Best-Selling Author Robert Flanagan’s Review of Seven in a Jeep

Maggot by Robert FlanaganRobert Flanagan is the best-selling author of Maggot, the critically-acclaimed book of Parris Island, location of Marine Corps. boot camp, in the era of the Vietnam War.  Robert Flanagan is also an award-winning poet and short story writer.

Ed Gaydos would like to thank Robert for providing the following review of his new book, Seven in a Jeep (Columbus Press).


In his Vietnam War memoir Seven in a Jeep, (2013, Columbus Press, Columbus, Ohio) Ed Gaydos presents a candid self portrait of a confused, frightened, but dutiful young American soldier in Vietnam 1970. In doing so he captures the essence of his eleven month tour of duty in a world of “concertina wire, machine guns, work details, latrines, prostitutes and the aftermath of enemy attacks.”

Gaydos, who had studied to become a Catholic priest, ended up at an artillery base in central Vietnam firing mortar rounds at a generally unseen enemy. There, he discovered the brutal truth that a reluctant combatant can be transformed by combat to a willing killer. In Gaydos’s case he stepped out of his hooch one morning and heard the “sharp, popping sound…of an AK47, the automatic rifle used by the North Vietnamese Army and the Viet Cong, “felt a wave of nausea,” and realized that “someone was out to take my life. In that defining instant my whole world changed; I changed. I forgot the values of my upbringing about the sanctity of life. I overthrew years of priestly formation aimed at helping other people. In a blink I was ready to kill. Before he killed me. It was oh-so easy; no more bother than putting on a different hat.”

Even so. his narrative does not lack the soldier’s typical black humor. The book’s title, Seven in a Jeep, for instance, has nothing to do with a life or death moment of attacking or fleeing the enemy, but rather to troopers rushing from a whorehouse to escape a surprise visit to the forbidden site by their punitive commanding officer.

That the core story in Seven in a Jeep has been told and retold in fiction, history and memoir from Homer’s Iliad and the Old Testament’s Book of Joshua through the American War of Independence, Civil War, WWI, WWII, Korea, Viet Nam, Afghanistan and Iraq does not lessen its impact: rather it corroborates the truth of its message. War can do great damage, physical, moral and psychological to the individual combatant. Each dog face, jarhead, flyboy, or swabby has to witness on his or her own the boredom of duty, idiocy of command, terror of combat, and murderous rage brought on by fear. Just as each age needs to discover for itself the cruelty of combat, the frequent idiocy of command, and the blood brother relationship of squad and platoon members.

Most every soldier’s war could be summarized as succinctly as Gaydos does regarding his experience. “We fought, and some of us died, out of devotion to fellow soldiers. Not for some larger sustaining cause.”