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Veterans' Benefits

When members of the U.S. armed forces transition back to civilian life after serving their country, they must make their own arrangements for health care, insurance, education, finances, and more. They have to work their way through a maze of programs and services to find out what assistance is available and how to apply.

The first section of this minibibliography lists general guides that discuss the needs and challenges facing veterans and their families. The second section presents resource guides that provide specific information about programs. The third section covers the history of those programs.

Recorded titles are available on digital cartridge, and/or the Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD), which allows registered patrons to download digital talking books and audio magazines. Digital braille is also available on BARD.

NLS has also created Resources for Disabled Veterans designed to assist disabled veterans, as well as their families and caregivers.



God Is Not Here
by Bill Russell Edmonds

Iraq war veteran and counterinsurgency expert Edmonds reflects on his experiences training Iraqi forces from 2005 to 2006, the emotional scars it left on him, and his resulting psychological collapse in 2011. Discusses war's toll on soldiers' psyches and ways of coping and healing. Violence and strong language. 2015.
Download DB82722

Modern Warriors: Real Stories from Real Heroes
by Pete Hegseth

A collection of conversations with American troops about what inspired their service, their legacy, the nature of sacrifice, how they have handled loss, and what lessons they would impart to civilians. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2020.
Download DB101983

Life after the Military
by Janelle Hill

A guide for veterans leaving the military. Discusses the emotional and psychological challenges of becoming a civilian and ways for families to cope with the change. Includes information on obtaining employment, furthering education, and managing finances. Lists relevant websites. 2011.
Download DB76698

Through Veterans' Eyes: The Iraq and Afghanistan Experience
by Larry Minear

Commentary from post-9/11 veterans collected from the Library of Congress Veterans History Project and supplemented by author interviews. Covers reasons for enlisting; dealing with combat, local populations, and contractors; and living with post-traumatic stress disorder and brain injury. Strong language and some violence. 2010.
Download BR19370
Download DB73626

The Things They Cannot Say
by Kevin Sites

Eleven veterans including the author, an award-winning war correspondent discuss their combat experiences in World War II Europe, Vietnam, and the Middle East. They relate the difficulties of returning to civilian life and dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. Violence and strong language. Commercial audiobook. 2013.
Download DB76432

After the War Zone: A Practical Guide for Returning Troops and Their Families
by Laurie B. Slone and Matthew J. Friedman

Two experts in post-traumatic stress disorder address the needs of soldiers returning home after their tour of duty. The authors detail the emotional cycle of deployment and common reactions to the trauma of war. They discuss case studies and the effect of community and family support on service members. 2008.
Download DB67380

Resource Guides

Coordinated Services for Veterans Who Are Blind Or Visually Impaired
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Provides a brief overview of resources that are available for Veterans and eligible active Service Members who are blind or visually impaired. Includes information on outpatient and inpatient rehabilitation centers, research and clinical evaluation programs, and assistive technologies. 2009.
Download DBC 02931

Federal Benefits for Veterans, Dependents, and Survivors
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

2016 summary of benefits provided to eligible individuals. Covers health care, service-related disabilities, pensions, education and training, home loans, life insurance, burial and memorial benefits, transition assistance, dependents, and survivors. 2016.
Download DB86254
Download DB72994 (Spanish language, 2011 edition)

Special Needs Families in the Military: A Resource Guide
by Janelle Hill and Don Philpott

Provides advice for military families dealing with special-needs children and adults. Discusses benefits and treatment options and highlights the importance of acting as an advocate for one's child. Includes resources section that lists support groups. 2011.
Download DB72224

Military Mental Health Care
by Cheryl Lawhorne-Scott

Resource guide for U.S. military veterans and their families provides information on medical treatment, rehabilitation, counseling, transition, and other care needed for mental and physical health. Includes information on traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, suicide, and other psychological issues. 2013.
Download DB76384

Soul Repair: Recovering from Moral Injury after War
by Rita Nakashima Brock and Gabriella Lettini

Explores the idea and effect of moral injury—the violation of core beliefs—on military personnel following their return from combat to civilian life. Discusses the symptoms, coping methods, and healing techniques to prevent suicide and other mental issues. Highlights four vets' experiences. Violence. 2012.
Download DB75902

The Wounded Warrior Handbook: A Resource Guide for Returning Veterans
by Don Philpott and Janelle Hill

Second edition of a guide for injured U.S. military veterans and their families provides information on medical treatment, rehabilitation, mental-health counseling, family support, and transitioning to civilian life. Details benefits, taxes, and legal issues and discusses bereavement. Includes resources and success stories. 2012.
Download DB75316


The GI Bill: A New Deal for Veterans
by Glenn C. Altschuler and Stuart M. Blumin

Discusses the history of the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944, commonly referred to as the GI Bill, and its 1945 revision. Details the significance of the GI Bill for veterans and the country after World War II. Includes background information on Veterans Administration home loans and on alleged gender and race biases. 2009.
Download DB70331

Best Care Anywhere: Why VA Health Care Is Better than Yours
by Phillip Longman

Economic journalist posits that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals offer services far superior to those in private-sector hospitals. Examines the VA system and advocates giving all Americans its high-quality, cost-effective health-for-life model of care. 2007.
Download DB65594

Vets under Siege: How America Deceives and Dishonors Those Who Fight Our Battles
by Martin Schram

Journalist examined the workings of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and deemed it understaffed and incompetent. Describes the experiences of veterans seeking medical help and highlights the backlog of claims and the denial of benefits. Discusses some improvements, such as state-of-the-art hospitals, and offers suggestions for further progress. 2008.
Download DB67340

Updated 2020

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