military books by servicemembers.




John Messer

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Chief Petty Officer John Messer, USN (ret.) is the author of Guardians of the Eagle; Earth Sweat Blood and Tears; and, Indomitable Maria Magdalena.

According to the book description of Guardians of the Eagle, “The author is a retired Navy Chief Petty Officer living in San Diego California. His desire that future generations have the opportunity to learn about the daily life of the men who served during the Cold War and Vietnam conflict motivated him to document his experiences during this extraordinary time in our history. This is a true story about a young boy who grew up on a tenant farm in rural Arkansas. Having no hope of obtaining a higher education, he joins the Navy.”


According to the book description of Earth Sweat Blood and Tears, “This story told in colloquial language of the time is a must read for those who love great family stories about the South. The central character is a young boy and his family on a rented cotton farm in rural Arkansas just before, during and after WWII. The memorial given Ol' Gray, the horse that was much loved by his father; Ol' Pal the dog of his boyhood; his meeting of Uncle Tom the boot legger; the fear and horror of Polio and many others will surely enthrall you. The sacrifices of his mother "The General" will touch your heart. We may view religion of that time as quaint in our modern era. But you will marvel at her faith. The stories are in short essay form and cover periods from the time of the Civil War, as told by his 92-year-old Uncle Floyd, through his fourteenth year. The influence of his grandparents, parents and siblings are related in a manner that you will come away feeling you know them. You will thrill at their successes and feel pain with their failures.”


One reader of Earth Sweat Blood and Tears said, “After receiving the book "Earth Sweat Blood and Tears" from a family member, I picked it up one morning just for something to read as I made my way to the office via the local public transportation--not expecting anything would really catch my interest. I absolutely was not expecting what I found once I cracked the cover of this fabulous book. What I found was an immediate connection with the author, although obviously we come from completely different backgrounds and different beliefs I was instantly consumed in the authors life of the time. The ability the authors has to mentally place you at the scene is uncanny. In a matter of just a few lines read--you feel as if you have traveled back in time to rural Arkansas and are watching the author from the sidelines as he lives through the trials and tribulations of being on a cotton farm in the 1930's and 40's.”


One reader of Indomitable Maria Magdalena said, “Hoping to find her way to the United States and a better life, she went to the border town of Tijuana Mexico. There she fell in with a woman called Carmella. Carmella made her living trafficking in illegal border crossings. In search of a better life Maria Magdalena traveled to the great San Joaquin Valley. The long hot days working in the cotton fields did little to improve her opportunities. The twist and turns she took as she learned to live in the sub-culture of the non-documented worker is truly fascinating. You will thrill as you read of her courage and indomitable spirit. Here you will discover the REAL power of a mother’s love. This story is for everyone that loves and appreciates the sacrifices of motherhood.”

Earth Sweat Blood and Tears
John Messer  More Info

Guardians of the Eagle
John Messer  More Info

Indomitable Maria Magdalena
John Messer  More Info

According to the book description of Indomitable Maria Magdalena, “This is a true story of a woman born in Mexico to a middle class family. Married at the age of sixteen, she was abandoned at twenty-eight after giving birth to four children. Accepting a low-level job in the Social Security Hospital in Mexico City she met, and fell in love with what she thought would be her prince charming. After impregnating her, he too abandoned her.


One reader of Earth Sweat Blood and Tears said, “It was impossible for me to put this book down once I started reading. I did not want to leave the author's world as he saw it; but rather wanted to stay with him and help him fight his battles; help him to understand life; and to just put my arms around him and his devoted mother--that he respectively refers to as "The General"--and give them both a hug. This book will make you laugh, it will make you cry, and will give you a new respect for the Southern part of the United States and what life was like for the people who lived there. I would recommend this book to anyone of any age and any background, as regardless of who you are YOU WILL develop and immediate respect and loyalty for the author. I have recently learned that this author has another book out titled "Guardians of the Eagle" which this reader CANNOT WAIT to start reading. I will be writing a raving review on that book as well I'm sure if it is anywhere near as good or as moving as "Earth Sweat Blood and Tears."


A final comment about this book; the only regret I had in reading it was when the book ended. I wanted so much to follow the author on to the next chapter of his life. I only wished that the book was a series of books as I'm sure there is much that remains untold.”

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