Item description for Cousins of Color by William Schroder...
Luzon, Philippines, 1899. Immersed in the chaos and brutality of America's first overseas war of conquest and occupation, Private David Fagen has a decision to make - forsake his country or surrender his soul. The result: a young black man in search of respect and inclusion turns his back on Old Glory - and is hailed a hero of the Filipino fight for independence.
Negro blood is just as good as a white man's when spilled in defense of the American Way, or so Fagen believed. But this time his country seeks not justice but empire. Pandemonium rules Fagen's world, anarchy the High Sheriff, and he knows every time he pulls the trigger, he helps enslave the people he came to liberate.
Not just an account of an extraordinary black solider caught in the grip of fate and circumstance, Cousins of Color tells the story of Fagen's love for the beautiful and mysterious guerilla fighter, Clarita Socorro, and his sympathy for her people's struggle for freedom. Cousins also chronicles Colonel Fredrick Funston's monomaniacal pursuit of victory at any cost and his daredevil mission to capture Emilio Aguinaldo, the leader of the Philippine revolution. Other characters include the dangerously unstable Captain Baston, particularly cruel in his treatment of prisoners and Sergeant Warren Rivers, the father Fagen never had.
Himself a Vietnam combat veteran, author William Schroder hurtles us through the harsh realities of this tropical jungle war and provides powerful insight into the dreams and aspirations of human souls corrupted and debased by that violent clash of cultures and national wills. Based on actual events, David Fagen's pursuit of truth and moral purpose in the Philippine Campaign brings focus to America's continuing obsession with conquest and racism and provides insight into many of today's prevailing sentiments.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.66" Width: 5.58" Height: 0.74" Weight: 0.88 lbs.
Release Date Mar 31, 2004
Publisher Twenty First Century Publishers Ltd
ISBN 1904433111 ISBN13 9781904433118
Availability 0 units.
More About William Schroder
WILLIAM SCHRODER is a writer, businessman, past helicopter pilot infantry officer, and a Vietnam veteran. He is an auxiliary cadre member of Warriors, Inc., a Hollywood film industry military technical advisory company. His own PTSD symptoms and their decades-long effects on his spouse, children, and loved ones compelled him to begin a deeper exploration of and book on the disorder.
Reviews - What do customers think about Cousins of Color?
Excellent adventure novel based on actual people and events. Nov 29, 2006
Mr Schroder has captured the rough and tumble times back when America stumbled into what became known as the Philippine Insurrection. Once the Spanish were routed from the Philippines, the US entered into a bloody and merciless conflict between the inhabitants and Americans. The actual events dealing with one Private David Fagan, an African-American soldier faced with the issues of suppressing Filipinos fighting for their freedom and the relentless and segregated American army and its brutal campaign. Interesting plotline, good characters, actual events and people blended into an excellent and compelling adventure that begs for life on the big screen. The author survived combat in Vietnam and knows what fear and death is like and blends those into this powerful story of Fagan as he faces his own fears and deserts and fights against his own countrymen, many of whom dispise him for the color of his skin. One problem I did have with this excellent novel was the fact that nearly all the African American soldiers speak English as if they just graduated from a well to do college rather than the broken and slang-riddled verbiage that should have been used in the text. Aside from that, the action is brisk, the fear tangible and the humidity almost soaks into the readers finger tips.
Honorable Desertion? Feb 28, 2006
We label soldiers like David Fagen deserters. How do we label a nation which first commits treason against a segment of its own citizenry? In this novel, perhaps the most honest account of Teddy Roosevelt's ill-considered war of conquest in the Philippines, Schroder illuminates not only the politics of the invasion, but the human story of one black soldier's heart-wrenching response to being ordered to suppress his 'cousins of color' on behalf of his own suppressor. A veteran of another Asian jungle war, Schroder's landscapes, villages, and cultural insights ring true. His stirring story of a heroic act of conscience is a lesson that even the best of nations must heed. Perhaps Cousins of Color packs such an emotional whallop because we come to understand, in this forgotten chapter of US history, the danger of allowing a president to use the military as a plaything or an instrument of wealth-building. If only the heads on Mt. Rushmore could speak, it's clear that Roosevelt and Lincoln would have much to disagree about.
Engrossing history and character study Aug 4, 2004
"Cousins of Color" is a fascinating and enlightening view of America's involvement in the Philippines at the turn of the century. President McKinley has sent US military forces to Manila for 'humanitarian' purposes. This is not a book about the men who make important decisions but about the trickle down effect those decisions have on other men. Schroder's story allows the reader to see what doors are opened by the arrogance of those in power. We see the dark side of some men manifest itself and the strength of character in others come through. It's a book about choices and one man choosing to do what is right over what is expedient.
Outstanding Aug 3, 2004
In the tradition of Stone and Vidal, this vivid and visceral biographical novel took me on a page turning journey into the depths of David Fagen's soul. William Schroder has painted a truly astonishing story of one man's agonizing and passionate clash between love of country and personal truth. Set in the Philippines during the Spanish American War, this country's frist encounter with "liberating occupation," I found myself engrossed in this remarkable story and asking the same difficult questions that must be facing many Americans in today's challenging times. When Hollywood makes this into a movie, and surely it will, I pray it will be as honest as this work so richly deserves. Excellent, absolutely excellent.
Dean T. Welsh, Los Angeles, California
Fascinating Historical Novel Aug 1, 2004
Fascinating Historical Novel, July 30, 2004 Reviewer: S. Esposito (lake havasu, az. United States) - See all my reviews
I must admit I knew very little about the period in time described in Cousins of Color prior to reading the book. Afterward, I felt as if a window to the time period had been opened for me, and I could clearly see the inhabitants going about their lives! The story is fascinating, and I quickly became involved in the tale and the lives of the protagonists. In particular, the dialog seemed unforced and genuine, and the plot flowed seamlessly to the stunning finale. I look forward to more books by this talented author.