The Thing They Carried By Tim O ' Brien

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A book by Tim O’brien called “The Thing They Carried” is about a soldier in the Vietnam War, who goes through harsh experience of war. Throughout the book he tells what they carried like the items they need on the battlefield and some things that are sentimental to them. He also tells stories of the men and what they did when they were bored, how they did not know what they were to do next, or why they had to do it. The book gives insight to what really went on in the minds of the soldiers and what they carried mentally. We hear now that soldiers have more available and maybe understand better. Back then you went to war and came home and did not talk about it. Hopefully we can get a better understanding of how war was then. In addition, I …show more content…

One critic states that “Though Cross is distracted and dreamy about a girl Martha, he also carries the responsibility for the lives of his men. (Plot Summary). For example, the author tells a story about what he carries. He tells about how his friend Ted happens to die. While he was on watch Ted was shot. All he could think about was how Ted dropped “like cement”(O’Brien 6). Also the only reason that “Ted Lavender was dead was because he loved Martha so much and could not stop thinking about her” (O’Brien 6). He was thinking about running on the beach with Martha, a girl from back home. In reality, this girl does not love him but she acts like she does or tends to lead him on because he is going away to war. As this is a play on him in the book maybe she is just trying to give him something to look forward to after the war. She send him a rock from the beach that he kept in his mouth and would leave it their tasting the sea salt. Also, he had a photo of her and would often wonder who took the photo of her when he would look at the one of the two she gave him. This is suspenseful because not only does one want to know if he ever talks to her again after what happens. In addition, after his tragic death he threw the rock and burn the pictures so that he would not ever be distracted again. Every time he thought of the death of his friend it made him feel more guilty.

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