A portrait of the strains of a military marriage and meditation on what it means to be left behind—a brave account of the challenges facing the wife of a Naval fighter pilot.
When she fell in love with her brother’s best friend, Rachel Starnes had no idea she was about to repeat a painful family pattern—marrying a man who leaves regularly and for long stretches to work a dangerous job far from home. Through constant relocations, separations, and the crippling doubts of early parenthood, Starnes effortlessly weaves together strands from her past with the relentless pace of Navy life in a time of war. Searingly honest and emotionally unflinching—and at times laugh out loud funny—Starnes eloquently evokes the challenges she faces in trying to find and claim a sense of home while struggling to chart a new path and avoid passing on the same legacy to her two young sons.
At once a portrait of the devastating strains that military life puts on families and a meditation on what it means to be left behind, The War at Home is a brave portrait of a modern military family and the realities of separation, endurance, and love that overcomes.
“Rachel Starnes’s The War at Home navigates the joys, fears, compromises, and casualties that create the terrain of marriage. And if you are a military spouse, her memoir will reveal thoughts you never even knew you had. This is a wise and fearless book.”
—Siobhan Fallon, author of You Know When the Men Are Gone
“One of the most honest and genuine memoirs I’ve ever read, as well as one of the most finely written. There’s not a false note in these pages. Rachel Starnes’s story is at once both singular and emblematic. . . . The War at Home is that rare thing: a book about the here and now that promises to last well beyond next month or next year.”
—Steve Yarbrough, award-winning author of The Realm of Last Chances and Safe from the Neighbors