One Shot At Love – a Review

The title of this book, One Shot At Love, makes it sound like it would be a romance story. This reader really isn’t fond of romance stories, but this book proved to be so much more. Yes, it is a romance story, but it is also about loyalty to one’s family, about Navy sharpshooters, and the horrors of the Vietnam War. One Shot At Love book is a book that this reader truly enjoyed.

Penny is a Kentucky girl through and through. Born and raised on a farm, she is taught to shoot and track by her cousin Dwight. Little did she know at that time, but these things taught to her while she was a young girl by her cousin would set her on a path to the Vietnam War.

Barely old enough to enlist, Penny becomes a sharpshooter in Vietnam and is sent out after a Vietnamese female sharpshooter who has managed to escape everyone who has been sent to stop her. She is teamed up with Buck, and they become close friends.

Those who fought in the Vietnam War have not always been looked upon kindly. But this book shows what it was like for our military sent over there. It shows how they took their jobs seriously and did their missions with bravery while looking out for each other.

When they come across American POWs that have been killed, their mission is to retrieve the dog tags from these fallen men and call in to have their bodies retrieved. No one is to be left behind.

flying squirrel, geograph

Besides tracking the cruel Vietnamese they have been sent to kill, Penny and Buck get to experience the wonderful natural beauty and animals in the jungle: flying squirrels, lizards, colorful birds, gibbons, and most of all, the rain that never seems to stop, makes everything turn to mud, and silences their movements.

Just as Buck and Penny have decided that they each will re-enlist and never part, tragedy strikes and throws a bit of a kink in their plans.

One Shot At Love is a wonderfully written book that tells a great story that will leave you feeling warm and comforted. Just from reading the words that Randy Waddell and Pippa Dowing Soeder wrote, the deep respect that the authors have for our military can be felt; this is a respect for our military that all should have.

I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. If you would like your own copy, I have provided an Amazon link below.

Amazon Link: One Shot At Love

open up to imagination,

Favorite Sentences:
The bush hat she wore was heavy with rain, its brim hanging low like a tired salute, concealing her face.

Shortly before noon, the rain eased, the sun popped out from behind the clouds, and the jungle became nature’s sauna.

Crew members started climbing out of the boat like clowns coming out of a Volkswagen.

It was fascinating to Penny—the eternal hope that resides within a human spirit, refusing to give up.

Penny saw this guard kick rats out of the way, as they darted back and forth between cells, snatching up rice if it slipped through someone’s fingers.

New Words Learned:
beriberi – a disease, endemic in E and S Asia, caused by dietary deficiency of thiamine (vitamin B 1). It affects the nerves to the limbs, producing pain, paralysis, and swelling

ghillie suit – a type of camouflage clothing designed to resemble the background environment such as foliage, snow or sand. … Some ghillie suits are made with light and breathable material that allows a person to wear a shirt underneath.

Jelutong tree – a tree, Dyera costulata, of the Malay Peninsula, from which a resinous latex is obtained

longhouse – a long communal dwelling

About the Authors:
Randy Waddell, from Louisville Kentucky, is perhaps most often remembered for his athletic ability, being twice named an All-American high school basketball player. His accomplishments on the court covered up the fact that he struggled with dyslexia in the classroom. In spite of his reading difficulty, Randy had a creative mind with a love for stories and books. While this is the first book he has co-authored and published, he has written several more which he never showed anyone until now. Still living in Kentucky, Randy is currently retired, caring for Audrey, his wife of 45 years who is battling MS, and staying young by playing golf as well as cheering on his children and grandchildren. Look for many more books by Randy to come out soon.

Co-author Pippa Downing Soeder also grew up in Louisville Kentucky and went to high school with Randy. Majoring in music education at Murray State University, she taught elementary/high school chorus and piano for 30 years—all while raising children and horses on a small Kentucky farm with her husband Jim, a Vietnam War veteran. Pippa recently retired and is enjoying more time with family and friends. Watch for more books from Pippa and Randy. It’s never too late to create!

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