The Greatest Beer Run Ever

by John Donohue

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LoveReading Expert Review of The Greatest Beer Run Ever

Vivid and personal, this rip-roaring account of a Vietnam vet’s quest to bring his former comrades-in-arms a beer from home leads to pertinent political realisations.

At once personal, politically-charged, moving and witty, John Chick Donohue’s The Greatest Beer Run Ever is an engaging account of a Vietnam vet’s tracking down of his former comrades-in-arms to bring them a beer from home. Living up to its title, it really does read like the greatest beer run ever, and will have readers interested in the human side of history laughing, crying and thinking in equal measure.

Like so many of life’s momentous ideas, a night in a bar prompts ex-Marine and merchant seaman Chick Donohue to hatch his plan to return to Vietnam. But unlike most bar-based ideas, Chick actually goes through with his. Armed with a list of names, a rucksack of beer, and hoping for a sprinkling of Irish luck, he sets off, though he admits that “I still had my doubts that I could pull it off.

This fascinating, enthralling account sees the author having to use his gift of the gab to press on past check-points before tackling multiple dangers and coming face to face with unexpected realities when he reaches Vietnam - realities that bring him to a big realisation: “I began to see that the protesters, however disrespectfully, were at least trying to stop this madness…If there is one thing that I learned as a result of my Vietnam experience it’s that government - all governments for that matter - are not to be trusted. Many politicians lie when it serves their interests.” This is tasty food for thought with universal resonance.

Joanne Owen

The Greatest Beer Run Ever Synopsis


Following a rowdy night at his local New York bar, ex-Marine and merchant seaman Chick Donohue decides to complete a legendary mission. He will travel to Vietnam, track down his buddies in combat and bring them a cold beer from home. It'll be the greatest beer run ever!

Now, decades on from 1968, he recounts the remarkable true story of how he actually did it.

Armed with Irish luck and a backpack full of alcohol, Chick works his passage to Vietnam, lands in Qui Nhon and begins to track down his serving friends one by one.

But things quickly go awry, and as he talks his way through checkpoints and unwittingly into dangerous situations, Chick sees a lot more of the war than he ever anticipated - spending a terrifying time in the Demilitarized Zone and getting caught up in Saigon during the Tet Offensive.

With indomitable spirit, Chick survives on his wits, but what he finds in Vietnam comes as a shock. By the end of his epic adventure, battered and exhausted, Chick finds himself questioning why his friends were ever led into the war in the first place.

About This Edition

ISBN: 9781913183318
Publication date: 3rd June 2021
Author: John Donohue
Publisher: Monoray an imprint of Octopus Publishing Group
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 288 pages
Primary Genre Biographies & Autobiographies
Other Genres:
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What To Read After The Greatest Beer Run Ever

Sequins for a Ragged Hem
An Innocent Baby
An Extra Pair of Hands

John Donohue Press Reviews

'You will laugh and cry, but you will not be sorry that you read this rollicking story.' - Malachy McCourt

'An unforgettable wild right from start to finish.' - John Bruning, New York Times bestselling author of Indestructible

'Donohue's memoir is a fascinating, vividly narrated recollection of the chaos of the Vietnam war.' - Publishers Weekly 

Other editions of this book

ISBN: 9781913183318
Publication date: 03/06/2021
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781913183325
Publication date: 12/09/2020
Format: Ebook

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