Set in 1966 at a military academy called “The Institute”, The Lords of Discipline is an extremely well-crafted look at the collegiate military life during a tumultuous period. For starters, the craft of hazing seemed to have been perfected to vicious and dangerous levels. The Vietnam War was ramping up and integration was invading college campuses. For an old school founded on history and tradition, the changes weren’t welcome.
Conroy himself was a graduate of The Citidel and grew up in a military family with a strict and abusive father. He deftly uses his background as a starting point for this amazing novel. From start to finish, I couldn’t put it down. It had everything. History, the gorgeous setting of Charleston, South Carolina, a great story, and Conroy proves himself to be a master as suspense and twists and turns that are as unpredictable as they are fantastic. I can’t say enough how much I enjoyed this novel!
4 1/2 stars (out of 5)
Published in 1980