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Book review: Book reveals the trials of living as a Navy SEAL

BY EMILY BURDS | OCTOBER 04, 2012 6:30 AM

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To say that the firsthand account of the mission that killed Osama bin Laden is insightful is an understatement. The New York Times bestseller No Easy Day has sparked so much controversy over the past few weeks that I decided I needed to read it. What I found in this compelling book certainly helped me understand why this story has seen so much criticism.

No Easy Day is the story of a Navy SEAL who was part of the mission that discovered and took down bin Laden. However, the book does not only cover that one momentous event.

Instead, it is the story of this young man’s life as a Navy SEAL. From his start as a young boy in the Alaskan wilderness to his training for the Green Team, one of the elite SEAL teams, and his numerous deployments and memorable missions, the book covers it all.

The author, writing under the pen name Mark Owen, and his coauthor, Kevin Maurer, have unfortunately been leaked to the public since the book’s release, and they are now under intense scrutiny from many military and government officials.

Many are now saying that this brisk and concise account is a little too revealing. Taking this into consideration when I read the book, I could see where the concerns were coming from.

Being a bit of a history and military buff, I have read many historical accounts in my spare time.

However, I have never learned so much about the U.S. military’s inner workings than when I sat down with my Kindle to read this book.

SEALs are naturally intriguing. Their status, experience, and ruthless attitude toward their jobs are something not found anywhere else on the planet. They are the men that women want to be with and the ones boys want to be.

The author of No Easy Day is the epitome of that idea. He even admits that his interest in the SEALs began from reading another SEAL memoir, Men in Green Faces, by former Vietnam SEAL Gene Waltz.

Despite the “sensitive and classified” material that may be contained in the pages of this book, it is a great account of one the biggest events in recent U.S. history and in the entire war on terror. It is also a tale that would have eventually been told anyway, some day when the horrors of bin Laden’s actions had long been in the back of Americans’ minds.

I am sure the heroics displayed in this book will soon inspire some young boy to carry on the SEAL tradition just as “Mark Owen” did. Should you have any interest in getting an inside look into the complicated lives of Navy SEALs and military men alike, this is a must-read.


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