One of the best quotes from The Things They Carried is, "It’s safe to say that in a true war story, nothing is ever absolutely true.” The author wants to convey the message of blurring between function and reality in any war-like situation. This book is a collection of multiple short stories based on the authors' personal experiences in the Vietnam War.

He dedicated this book to the fictional platoon of American soldiers referred to as the " Alpha Company." Before starting with The Things They Carried PDF, let's highlight its achievements, summary, review, etc., to have a brief idea about this book.

The Things They Carried: Book Info

Title: The Things They Carried

Author: Tim O'Brien

Published In: 28th March 1990 by Houghton Mifflin

Genre: Historical Fiction, Classic, War, Short Stories

Language: English

Length: 246 Pages


  • National Book Critics Circle Award Nominee for Fiction in 1990
  • Pulitzer Prize Nominee for Fiction in 1991
  • Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger for Roman in 1990
  • Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize for Fiction in 1990
  • Over 2 million copies sold worldwide

The Things They Carried: Author

Tim O'Brien is a well-known American novelist who became popular because of his work based on the Vietnam War. He also wrote many books on the postwar lives of his associates. His semi-autobiographical book The Things They Carried has been considered "a classic of contemporary war fiction" by the New York Times. He is better known as a Vietnam War writer.

He was a respected teacher and creative writing instructor at the MFA program of Texas State University–San Marcos. Worthington, Minnesota, had a very intense influence on his writing. He pursued political science at Macalester College. He used to be the student body president. In his college year, 1968, he joined the United States Army and deployed to the Vietnam War.

The Things They Carried: Summary

This book is a collection of 21 short stories with several characters and plots involving imagination, memories, expectations, and many other emotions. This story revolves around a soldier platoon named "Alpha Company." This group has many characters like Jimmy Cross, Mitchell Sanders, Kiowa, Rat Kiley, Tim O'Brien, and others.

In this book, every story tells about different aspects of war and human emotions like camp, jokes, dreams, marches, etc. It gives you a before and after picture of the transformation of human life. The first story, "The Things They Carried," shows the platoon leader's attachment and sacrifice of his unfulfilled love.

In the next story Tim O'Brien as a soldier, told the leader about writing a story about his memories and hopes so that his love could read it and come back to him. So, each story reflected the real human shades of best and worst such as selflessness, loyalty, heroism, cruelty, petty, fear, etc.

The Things They Carried: Review

The main purpose of this story is to make the readers realize that soldiers have gone through war-like situations because the author thinks that society has a minimal and vague idea about war and its consequences for life.

The author says, "I want you to feel what I felt. I want you to know why story-truth is truer sometimes than happening-truth.” That means the real feeling, emotions, expectations, or imaginations have not changed in any soldier; the only thing that gets changed is the situations, the perspective of seeing life, and its so-called truth.

The author draws the readers' attention to the facts where the line gets blurred between the absolute truth and the concept of truth. This book will make you witness an actual war-like situation and its unavoidable impact on mankind through the individual journey of the soldier.

The Things They Carried: E-Book PDF

Despite being a war-based book, it makes you experience various parts of human life that are sometimes motivational, inspirational, devastating, hilarious, and so on. While gathering knowledge about real-time war situations, this book also helps change your mode and life ideas. So, to stay close to this, it's best to carry The Things They Carried PDF on your smartphone or other device for easy and smart access to this book.

The Things They Carried PDF book
The Things They Carried: Experience Life Before & After War

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What are The Things They Carried mainly about?

According to the author, "They carried the sky. The whole atmosphere, they carried it, the humidity, the monsoons, the stink of fungus and decay, all of it, they carried gravity.” Through the phenomenal quote, the author tries to say that the soldier carries all the obstacles, challenges, dangers, death, and disease; in short, they carry all the power and strength of nature and humanity with its devastating darkness.


While always complaining about daily challenges, reading The Things They Carried pdf would make you realize how privileged you are. Having friends, families, and loved ones around you, sometimes you don't realize their importance and presence. While going through The Things They Carried PDF, you will come across several aspects of life that people must go through with compulsion in any war-like situation.


What is the main purpose of The Things They Carried?

The main purpose of this book is to make society aware of the brutality and helplessness that any soldier has faced in any war situation. Before any war, a soldier is a normal human with natural emotions and feelings. But war can change him completely through its cruelty and devastation.

Why Is The Things They Carried Controversial?

This book is controversial and considered a "Banned book" because of its abusive language, sexual content, and violence. Therefore this book is also not appropriate for the educational context.

Lydia is an English columnist for AWZware. She is familiar with different technology products such as office software, location changers, and video software applications. Focused on tech blog writing, she is willing to solve your problems with up-to-date information.

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