by J. Lawrence Graham
Narrated by Nan McNamara
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Pub Date 23 Oct 2023 | Archive Date 25 Oct 2023
Greenleaf Audiobooks, Greenleaf Book Group Press
This epic novel follows one extraordinary American woman as she grieves and triumphs through the horrific realities of three wars that threaten the men she loves.
Charlotte Fletcher is in the fight of her life to save her firstborn son from facing a truth she knows all too well—the dreadful impact of war. First, she watched her own brother suffer the destructive consequences of youthful bravado in WWII. Then, she waved goodbye to her husband, a decorated hero, who sailed into harm’s way a second time in the Korean conflict. Now, with her son headed to Vietnam, Charlotte is using all the arrows in her quiver to stop the conflict.
As Charlotte weaves through major world events, her remarkable will and intelligence position her to offer key insights to leaders negotiating peace in Vietnam. After being raised in China by missionary parents, Charlotte completed her studies at Radcliffe and Harvard and received a Berkeley PhD in anthropology, giving her unique expertise to persuade the renowned decision makers she encounters.
The formidable connections Charlotte forges over the years—including visionaries such as JFK, two U.S. Secretaries of State, and even Ho Chi Minh—culminate in a surprising and captivating convergence of personalities, power, and politics.
“John Graham, whose unique background runs from Navy Seal to perceptive scholar of cross-cultural negotiations, has produced a gripping historical thriller with wartime storylines as engaging as they are informative. From naval battles in WWII to sexist encounters in Harvard Yard, to memorable characters who bring alive the painful dynamics of Korea and Vietnam, Graham delivers on page after page of this tightly woven novel. Highly recommended!”
—James K. Sebenius, Gordon Donaldson Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School, director, Harvard Negotiation Project, Harvard Law School, author of Kissinger the Negotiator
“In this riveting novel, J. Lawrence Graham's deep expertise shines through, making classic negotiation dynamics usually only discussed in textbooks come alive in a suspenseful and thrilling narrative up until the very end. In it, you'll meet the powerful Charlotte Fletcher Shipwright, a woman whose ideas about human and international relations provide unique insights for building peace today and long into the future. Charlotte’s War is a crucial read, helping both men and women see a more creative and cooperative world.”
—Michele Gelfand, John H. Scully Professor of Cross-Cultural Management, Stanford Graduate School of Management, author, Rule Makers, Rule Breakers
“In Charlotte’s War, J. Lawrence Graham seamlessly weaves the story of one woman’s futile rage against the war machine into an epic narrative with Henry Kissinger, Ho Ch Minh, and the blood-soaked history of the Vietnam War. Graham’s novel is a monumental achievement about the nobility and cruelty of battle, and an insightful exploration of the impact of war on the human spirit. Brilliantly researched and penned, Graham studiously explains the military machine and diplomatic strategies that led to the Vietnam War through Charlotte’s intimate and moving life story.”
—Kim Dempster, member of the Directors Guild of America and Women in Film & Television, author of The Color of Mourning
“If J. Lawrence Graham had simply written a popular history of world events in the mid-twentieth century, I would have read it gladly. He offers a fascinating, engaging, and historically reliable narrative of political events and intrigues associated with World War II, the Korean War, and the war in Vietnam. If Graham had simply written a story of a woman and her family wrestling with the challenges faced by twentieth-century Americans, I would have been drawn in by his captivating narrative and sympathetic characterizations. But Charlotte’s War is not either of these things. It is both at once. It offers engrossing history interwoven with authentic fictional biography. I highly recommend Charlotte’s War to anyone who enjoys a wonderful story that both informs and delights. Moreover, this book provokes the reader to consider new ways of approaching both relationships and politics in the twenty-first century.”
—Rev. Dr. Mark D. Roberts, executive director, Max De Pree Center for Leadership at Fuller Seminary, author of Dare to Be True
“Influenced by the historical fiction of Herman Wouk’s War and Remembrance, J. Lawrence Graham’s dual purpose in Charlotte’s War is to entertain and to edify. He admirably accomplishes those goals by ingeniously interweaving historical facts about the Vietnam War with such fictional characters as Charlotte Fletcher. Born in Canton, China, where her parents were missionaries, Charlotte later becomes a professor of anthropology and a fervent anti-war activist whose brother, husband, and son fight in three different wars. The stories of her relationships over many years with such non-fictional characters as Ho Chi Minh, Henry Kissinger, Alfred Kroeber, and Ursula Le Guin are enhanced by Graham’s extensive historical research and by his own professional experiences as a Navy SEAL officer and a leading scholar of international business negotiations.”
—Spencer C. Olin, PhD, Professor Emeritus of History, UC Irvine, author of Why War? Ideology, Theory, and History
“In this entertaining, quasi-fictional historical novel, J. Lawrence Graham deservedly earns the reputation for creating the mid-twentieth century ‘Forrest Gump’ of the geopolitical landscape. Through his main character, Charlotte Fletcher, Graham traces Charlotte’s fascinating life story, including encounters with Richard Nixon, Henry Kissinger, and Ho Chi Minh’s secret Chinese daughter. In spite of the fact that her brother, husband, and son are heroic naval officers, Charlotte’s journey shapes her strongly pacifistic worldview, perspective on how men and women handle conflict, and her expansive peacebuilding skills. Bringing his excellent background in geopolitical history and international negotiation, Graham’s writing is easy to digest, accurate in historical detail, and marvelously engaging in its tongue-in-cheek narrative.”
—Roy J. Lewicki, PhD, Abramowitz Memorial Professor Emeritus, Management and Human Resources, Max M. Fisher College of Business, The Ohio State University, author of Essentials of Negotiation (7th edition)
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|14 Hours, 29 Minutes, 20 Seconds