After reading Married to the Military, a short story collection by Terry L. Rollins, I have a new understanding and appreciation not only for the men and women who serve our country in the United States military, but also for their families – particularly their spouses. Rollins’ book is a compilation of 10 fictional accounts of military wives that read like mini memoirs. They are each so realistic that I checked more than once to ensure that the book really is a work of fiction. A military wife herself, the author’s voice is authentic and absolutely believable. I imagine that throughout her decades as a woman “married to the military”, Rollins likely knew women in real life who closely resemble her characters.
Each of the 10 stories that make up Married to the Military is about a different woman and a different military family, at various points of their lives and who live in a variety of time periods throughout the last few decades. They range from pregnant women with young families, to women dealing with loss, and those living beyond the years of service as retired military families. While each story is unique, they all share the common elements of strength and perseverance.
As I read through the fictional accounts of these 10 military families, I found myself laughing, crying, and marveling at what people are willing to endure for the sake of patriotism and dedication to the callings of their spouses. I often hear about the bravery of the men and women who serve, but I never hear about the courage of the families who support those remarkable public servants. Because when soldiers are being called into active duty, or simply in the course of their often dangerous jobs, their families are behind the scenes, offering support not only to their spouses and children, but also to their extended families and to the other military families they meet along the way.
Rollins does an excellent job of allowing her readers a glimpse of what it really means to be a part of a military family – of the sacrifices and dedication required, and the joys and heartache that comes with the territory.
Alysia lives in Metro Detroit with her husband and four children. She writes about family life, parenting issues, and other things of interest to her on her blog, Michigal.
Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Terry Rollins. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.