My Reading List:

  • "The Art of Learning" by Josh Waitzkin
  • "The Greatest Generation" by Tom Brokaw
  • "In Spite of the Gods" by Edward Luce

Monday, September 3, 2007

Rogue Warrior

Most (auto)biographies that I have read are a staid affair. This autobiography of a decorated Navy SEAL on the other hand, reads like a Tom Clancy novel. It starts off by pitting the reader directly into the middle of an ongoing SEAL mission. Then it rolls back and starts at the beginning. The time period of the action extends from a little before the Vietnam war and extends all the way up to the beginning of Desert Storm in Iraq. It takes the reader from the dangerous battles in the jungles of Vietnam, to the equally dangerous political battles in the Navy bureaucracy.

Richard Marcinko a real life action hero with a passion for life is brutally honest about his successes and his failures, his adventures and his misadventures. He gives an insight into the stresses a military life can have on a family, the inadequacies of a by-the-book military that were apparent in Vietnam, and are just as stifling and paralyzing in the current day battles against terrorism, and the unfortunate truth about the real qualifications that are required to succeed in the US (or maybe any) military.

Also included at the end is a Glossary of the maddeningly long and complicated abbreviations used by the US Navy, some of which have as many letters as the word abbreviation! The only caveat I have for a discerning reader is the extensive use of foul language in the book, which after the first few chapters come across as rather juvenile. But then like I said Richard Marcinko is completely honest about his failures. If you like military fiction (which this is not) and you can read past the profanity (of which there is abundance) this book is definitely worth your time.

Title: Rogue Warrior
Author: Richard Marcinko with John Weisman
# Pages: 373
Published by: Pocket Books (New York)
Year: 1993
ISBN #: 0-671-79593-1