Acclaim is flowing to a Vietnam novel by an ex-Marine from Seaside. Karl Marlantes' book "Matterhorn" was released Tuesday by Atlantic Monthly Press/El Leon Literary Arts. Marlantes is a 1963 graduate of Seaside High School.

On his 27-city book tour, Marlantes will speak in Astoria to the Columbia Forum April 21.

Typical of the critical acclaim for "Matterhorn" is this from Mark Bowden, author of "Black Hawk, Down": "There have been some very good novels about the Vietnam War, but this is the first great one."

The former Vietnam television correspondent Dan Rather said, "'Matterhorn' is one of the most powerful and moving novels about combat, the Vietnam War, and war in general that I have ever read."

Valerie Ryan, proprietor of Cannon Beach Book Company calls Marlantes' work "the quintessential book about war, human nature, pride, ambition, bravery and the hearts and minds of young men."

Following graduation from Seaside High School, Marlantes entered Yale University, and subsequently became a Rhodes Scholar, studying at Oxford University. He became a Marine Corps infantry officer, serving in the embattled I Corps of the northern part of South Vietnam. Following his combat tour, for which he was decorated, Marlantes worked in the Pentagon.

"Matterhorn" is the product of 33 years' labor. Marlantes and his wife live in Woodinville, Wash.

The Columbia Forum will be held at the Loft in the Red Building at No. 20 Basin St.

To reserve seats for Marlantes' April 21 appearance, call Michele Tila at (503) 325-3211 or e-mail (forum@dailyastorian.com)

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