Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
Few people know the inside story of what Navy Seals do, day in and day out for our country; even fewer have an inkling of the concept of what it takes for these men to put the mission FIRST, above their own safety, and even above their families. The tight brotherhood of the seal team is a bond that is like no other, sacred to the men on the team, understood and shared only by them. My husband (a retired army SGM) and I listened to this audio book together while driving to visit our son who works at the Ordnance School at Fort Lee, Virginia. Having two sons who served in the Iraqi war, and one now in Afghanistan, we are both very in tune to what goes on behind the scenes in defense of our country. Yet we cannot imagine being parents of a Navy seal . . . yes, we would be proud . . . but wartime service is hard enough for families . . . constant covert missions would be a nightmare. Thank God for these men, and their families who also sign on for whatever the MISSION brings.
I have complex feelings about Tom Clancy. I thought his first five or so books were wonderful. The next few laughable. The last few great entertainment, particularly as to the action scenes. This one is just too trite. Too much like thousands of other jingoistic, US all good, SEALs all good and near superhuman, the wives all brilliant and beautiful with great careers until they become housewives after getting married, volumes. Like a pulp Western I suppose. Telegraphs the outcome, to the extent is any different than it would ever be in any similar story, way ahead of time.
That said, the action scenes are great. Very compelling, even if the characters are super human. And the actual prose is not bad at all. I thought the narrator was suitably manly and serious. Really quite good.
So it is not horrible escapist literature, just way more predictable than even most of the genre.
ELLE aka PlantCrone of the Great Pacific Northwest. I enjoy almost every genre-S/F, Action, Biographies and Histories & Romance
I get confused with some of these Tom Clancy Presents books-where his name is top of the book in BOLD but the book is written by someone else. Does he get the blame for writing this tear jerker? or do Couch and Galdoris? Oh well-in any case, what it isn't is anything close to "The Hunt for Red October" in writing ability. Is Clancy sponsoring these new writers if they follow some sort of outline he gives them? I'm really curious here.
'Act of Valor', which I guess is also a movie I missed, is a heroic 'Navy Seals Give Their Lives For The Free World" kind of novel that has been written many times before. Of course the guy who gets killed in the end is the one with the pregnant wife, of course the Mexican Federales are slightly less competent than the Seals. But worse of all is the placing of Federales in Costa Rica. This is an example of a writer not doing his research. Costa Rica has not had a standing army since 1948 when then President Jose Figures Ferer abolished it and the country decided to spend that money on schools and health for the population-what a concept. Costa Rica is a peace loving country and the country written about here may be Nicaragua or Columbia but it's NOT Costa Rica. I've been a resident of that country and believe a huge disservice was done in the misleading writing in this book.
OK-off my soap box now.
The novel has fairly bland character development. All bad guys are truly evil, All good guys are Americans and in some instances, Mexican. No indication that there just might be American bad guys involved in dope running or on the receiving end of the bad stuff thats being passed.
The plot was a bit confusing and was primarily devoted to technical descriptions of guns, planes, submarines, night vision goggles etc etc etc. Towards the end a bit of plot came out wherein bad guys were going to have muslem faithful wear bomb vests and blow up America. Nothing new or original.
This gets 3 stars for average average average. If you love this kind of novel, you'll love the book. This wouldn't be my choice of a first Tom Clancy book t read, however--for that I'd suggest one of his early ones like Red October. That book was thrilling!
Clancy can do so much better.
I was happy with the readers performance, he has a good voice and was comfortable to listen to. I do wish there was a bit more intensity given to the SEALs voices particularly in the action scenes. I've read a number of biographies of former SEALs and they are all colourful characters with both good and bad traits, I found the characters in this book to be too textbook and without flaws or depth, and lacked some of the "Gung Ho" spirit and undying love for action that actual SEALs seem to possess. The story itself is predictable but passable, but I think it pales in comparison to the real stories told by actual SEALs such as in the books by Chris Kyle and Donn Mann which I found to have more intense action, humour and entertainment value than this work. Based on my knowledge I do think the author is very knowledgeable and includes lots of accurate details about the SEALs, technology and the Military/Navy which I enjoyed, and it is also clear that he has utmost respect for these heroes.
It's number one
Clear and Present Danger
He's a great story teller
Act of the Brave
You have to listen and then see the movie
A set of new characters is introduced. The plot was interesting and you didn't want to stop listening,
I highly recommend this book if you are a Tom Clancy fan.
I love espionage, legal, and detective thrillers but listen to most genres. Very frequent reviews. No plot spoilers! Please excuse my typos!
Act of Valor is not a bad book; Act of Valor is certainly not an excellent book; it's barely worth listening to. I'm more interested in why Tom Clancy decided to to become a brand rather than continue s a great espionage thriller writer. Whether it be his "Op Center" series or his "Tom Clancy Presents" series, Clancy used his name to place inferior works by inferior authors in the marketplace. I suspect that Clancy's marketing strategy was a financial success for him, but it sullied his reputation a a great author of fiction. Clancy is now dead and his Ryan Jr./John Clark series is being carried forward with great competence by Mark Greany and with lesser competence by Grant Blackwood.
I like the genre but this one really missed the mark. The story was thin and the characters were developed in an almost formulaic manner. Try the Heart and the Fist if you want SEALS.
I am someone who enjoys audible books very much now that they exist. As a young student (real young) I can remember a teacher telling me how books can transport people to different places & open up a whole new world. This is how listening to audible books make me feel. Now if I can just stop falling asleep while listening to them at night I would be fine. Ha ha
Probably because it was well written & very interesting as well as educational.
Any & all of the Navy Seals
No, I prefer to stretch good books out.
Who knew the life of a navy seal team could be so mundane and boring. The story of seal team seven is overly saturated with protocol information, combat jargon, and personality analysis. Unfortunately, very little attention is given to the actual mission the story is suppose to be about. As the story progressed, I felt more and more like I was participating in a social studies class rather than a navy seal adventure. The action was scarce and far between. The dialogue was corny, and read too much like a newsreel. On a positive note, it was informative, and would have been interesting if I'd been looking to read a non-fiction story.