The Yellow Birds Characters
John Bartle is a twenty-one year old soldier in the U.S. Army, fighting in Iraq in the novel The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers. Bartle is the main character, something of an antihero, and the narrator of the novel. Bartle is very intelligent, very emotionally complex, and very observant of the world around him. His tour of duty in Iraq coincides with his final year of enlistment in the Army. In camp in New Jersey, Bartle meets Daniel Murphy for the first time, and the two quickly form something of a friendship, perhaps even something of an older brother/younger brother relationship. At the party before deployment, Murphy's mother makes Bartle promise her to bring her son back home to her. Bartle promises her this, but is later punched by Sterling, who tells him it was a stupid thing to do, and a stupid thing to promise.
In Iraq, Bartle and...