RaveThe Wall Street JournalWar narratives usually fall somewhere on a spectrum between elegiac and ironic, and “Cherry” certainly skews ironic. Mr. Walker achieves this effect in the way he mixes registers, switching quickly between the slangy or ultra-simple and the literary or vaguely bureaucratic ... the humor in the book is a sort of anti-humor; it is deadpan in the extreme ... One of the chief pleasures of Mr. Walker’s writing is how it shies away from pretension, both stylistically and thematically, yielding memorable descriptions ... Mr. Walker’s crisp observations draw us in, so that we happily follow the narrator through the war, through his seedy life in sex and drugs, until he’s eventually robbing banks. There are no tricks in the writing, no striving for meaning on every page when there is not much more to relate than the drug-hunger that consumes an addict’s life. The book is wonderfully direct ... a bracingly original novel.
C J Chivers
RaveThe Washington PostI was hesitant to pick up The Fighters ... What a mistake that would have been. This book is remarkable ... The Fighters belongs alongside those volumes, but it achieves its own broad scope by relying on the more intimate canvas of individual experience ... Chivers doesn’t shy away from the moral complexity of volunteerism. What does it say about us that we chose to fight? Chivers gives the thrill of combat and its horror equal time ... a memorial in pages.