SOFREP Books is pleased to announce the reintroduction of Sully’s Squad, now available on Amazon.

The book is a World War II epic and coming-of-age tale told through the eyes of fifteen-year-old Arty. Like so many young men of the time, Arty lied about his age to get into the fight. As part of his adventures, he meets the young postulant Angelina in a cathedral garden, and their friendship blossoms into a romance.

In time, Arty finds himself in the thick of the action of the Sicilian campaign, dealing directly with the horrors of war while also forming a brotherly bond with his best friend, Coney, a wise-guy city slicker. Sully grows up quickly around the young men in his squad, all from different backgrounds. Most keep their deepest secrets and fears inside as they do their best to project bravery. In time, our hero discovers that people are often not what they appear to be at first, as certain truths about Angelina slowly reveal themselves.

Arty literally grows up at war, mentored by his squad leader, Sully, who provides him with a new role model for masculinity. You see, Arty had a tense relationship with his father and it is Sully who is now leading him down the path to manhood.

Sully’s Squad is a story for the ages. It poignantly contrasts the brutality of war against the innocence of youth and the reconciliation of the two.

I’m certain you’ll enjoy this work by New York author Kevin Wilson, who based the story loosely around a World War II hero uncle he never had a chance to meet. There is a good reason it gets 4.8 out of 5.0 stars on Amazon. Pick up your copy today! –GDM

Excerpt From Sully’s Squad

I’d been prepared to enlist—since December 7, 1941, to be exact. Dad and I had just returned home with a six-foot evergreen whose fragrance filled the home, competing with the sweet smell of my mom’s sugar cookies. I stuck a pine needle between my lower front teeth; it was sharp and pleasantly spicy. Dad set the stand in the far corner of our living room, and I held the tree upright while he tightened the screws against the trunk.

My parents’ favorite Sunday afternoon show, “Sammy Kaye’s Sunday Serenade,” played on the dining room radio while Suzanne, Catherine, Dad, and I began trimming the tree. Mom was busy baking in the kitchen. I stepped outside onto the back porch to gather a few extra logs for the wood stove. A stronger wind had replaced the brisk morning air, and dark blue clouds covered the sun. It felt like snow. I shivered with cold and excitement. Maybe tomorrow would be a snow day!

Back inside, Dad checked on the wood stove and returned to the tree. “Arthur, can you grab…” He stopped mid-sentence and focused on the radio.

Sully's Squad Family
Original illustration by SOFREP.

We interrupt this program to give you a special news bulletin,” a journalist announced. Mom joined us in the living room as he continued. “The Japanese have attacked Pearl Harbor in Hawaii by air… The attack was also made on all naval and military activities in the principal Hawaiian island of Oahu…  A Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor would naturally mean war. Such an attack would naturally bring a counter attack and hostilities of this kind would mean that the President would ask Congress for a Declaration of War… We return you now to your regularly scheduled program and will give you more information as it comes along from the White House.”

Dad turned off the radio, pulled out his pipe and slammed the back door on his way out.  The words “declaration of war” lingered in the air. I felt as if I stood in cement. It was as if time had suspended itself and we were all statues. Mom sat down on the couch and began to pray quietly.

The next day in school we listened to President Roosevelt declare war on Japan. A feeling of anger came over me as he described the attack; so many lives were lost. I could feel my body become stiff as I clenched my hands and jaw. By the end of the week Germany also declared war on the United States.

In the days to come, all everyone talked about was the attack. Dinner conversations centered around who enlisted. My friends and I talked less about sports and more about strategies for enlisting early. For a while, our daily basketball games were replaced with watching activity around the military recruitment offices on South Broadway. We were just shy of sixteen. This was going to present a problem. Then my friend, Billy, learned about a guy forging free fake ID’s for anyone who wanted to enlist before the age of 18. The following Saturday afternoon a bunch of us went to the pool hall and picked up our fake IDs. None of us, though, had the courage to actually join up. Six months later, I would be the first.

The real Sully.

Pick up your copy at Amazon.