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SMOKE FOR BREAKFAST: A Vietnam Combat Pilot's Story by Brian Settles

SMOKE FOR BREAKFAST: A Vietnam Combat Pilot's Story

by Brian Settles

292 pages
Vietnam Combat pilot's quest for Honor, Courage and Marital Faithfulness

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Category: Military
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About the Book
Smoke for Breakfast: A Vietnam Combat Pilot’s Story is a unique literary excursion into the private world of former airline Captain Brian Settles who flew almost 200 missions as a Vietnam combat pilot in the F-4 Phantom fighter jet. Written in the poetic language of a true wordsmith, the author invites the reader into his guts and glory world, the culture of bravery, combat flying, and what it took to endure. The revelations about his fighter pilot existence bleed with a realism that is heaped with humanity, the challenge to excel, and survive a combat tour in an unpopular war. Captain Settles has revealed the in-your-face reality of his private world as a combat pilot, experiencing the adventure of a life time flying the Phantom over the skies of Vietnam and Laos: night formation flying, dodging antiaircraft fire, the camaraderie, the boozing, struggles with faithfulness and pilot ego, and the dying; it’s all dripping from the steamy pages of Smoke for Breakfast. In a parallel to Orson Well’s classic work, “Citizen Kane,” Captain Settles takes readers on flashbacks to his youth as an adopted bi-racial orphan struggling with universal feelings of diminishment, inferiority and inadequacy on the streets of Muncie, Indiana.

In this diary style read, Settles takes readers on a graphic flight into the agony of personal struggle, isolation, deprivation and combat losses of close friends that are the bi-products of aerial combat. Interwoven with the day to day uncertainty of combat survival, the author shares the incessant angst of being a newlywed in Nam. Much like the epic Odysseus’ preoccupation with Penelope’s faithfulness, the writer confesses his daily struggle to blot out fears about his bride’s willpower to resist suitors, concurrently preoccupied with guilt over his own sinfulness. Writing in erotic detail, Captain Settles confesses his failures to overcome the temptations of infidelity thrust upon him, a child of God whose neediness to prove himself temporarily dwarfed his faith. Settles’ in your face expose of the surreal world of the fighter pilot oozes a sensuality that is only exceeded in its intensity by his candor. Readers won’t find a more honest book about what it means to be a combat pilot, marital faithfulness, male ego and war.



About the Author
Brian Settles Retired airline Captain, Brian H. Settles, orphaned, adopted and an ROTC Distinguished Military graduate from Ball State University earned a Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education and Spanish. From U. S. Air Force combat pilot, to airline pilot, single-parent father, taxicab driver, Captain Settles is now an adjunct professor at Mercer University.



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