Keeping Faith is one of the most detailed and intriguing books about the Marines corps boot camp experience. It is also a great book for those who can relate to a close father-son relationship. It was written back and forth by email by father and son. The book was touched up by Frank Schaeffer, the father, and then sent to publishing. It was published in 2002 by Carroll & Graf Publishers. Frank Schaeffer has also written novels such as Saving Grandma and Portofino.
At the very beginning of the book, the authors talked about John’s childhood. It all led up to boot camp. The beginning showed how well the father and son bonded. It showed with the deep connection between the two. This helped with the understanding of the rest of the book.
When John first decided to join the Marine Corps, Frank freaked out. His dad had no ideal what to think. He had come from a missionary in Europe and had been in the counterculture. He knew nothing about the military, let alone the Marines. All he was was an author and heavy reader from a different country. He was an alien. He became very frantic to find out as much information as he could.
John got shipped to Parris Island and everything became surreal to him. From the D.I.’s (drill instructors) screaming at the recruits to the unbearable P.T. (physical training), John soon had learned he was in for a lot of pain. They would put them into these sand pits and they would do exercise after exercise in them. The recruits could smell the puke and sweat from the recruits before them. Boot camp was Brutal. The only forms of communication to his family were the letters they had written back and forth. It showed him transforming into a Marine in each letter and also showed his and his father’s deep affection for each other.
This book is by far the best I have read about Marine Corps boot camp. I would recommend it to anyone who is going into boot camp, parents of recruits (recruits are what they are called in boot camp), anyone...