All the Time in the World

My taste in reading material is wide and varied: SF/fantasy/"speculative fiction", mysteries (police procedurals, mostly), history, fanfic, straight fiction, smutty vampire books, biographies, poetry, cereal boxes, assembly instructions, the fine print, and your mind.

The Healer's War

The Healer's War - Elizabeth Ann Scarborough Only passingly "fantasy" - the main character, Kitty, is a young Army nurse serving at the medical facility at China Beach during the Viet Nam war (the story is based on Elizabeth Ann Scarborough's own experiences.) In places Scarborough's descriptions of injuries and some soldiers' behavior are grim nearly to the point of horror, but her depiction of the experience, particular that of being female in a wholly male-dominated environment, rings utterly true.

The fantasy element has to do with an elderly Vietnamese man who is being treated in the hospital, who is revered as a holy man and healer by the other Vietnamese on the ward and on staff; he possesses an amulet that allows him (and later Kitty) to perceive the auras of the people around him and direct energy to healing them. An afterword by Scarborough explains that she employed this device as a way of allowing the character more interaction with the interior lives of the Vietnamese villagers.