The descriptions are so potent and tangible, it doesn't take much imagination to transport yourself into his shoes, though it's not really a place anyone wants to be. It communicates a very sobering, true-to-life glimpse of the modern day soldier's experience, and I feel helps the reader to better understand the situation.
There were several. Of course the big reveal of how Murphy is killed is probably the most memorable and shocking. I also thought the picture of the bleeding horse coming down into the water was memorable.
Very convincing voice - he conveyed the raw emotion in a tempered (albeit harsh) way that felt true to the way the author would read it, stating the truth without shying from the awfulness of it (without being whiny or overly dramatic).
A young soldier, tasked with an impossible burden...
...to keep his friend safe.
This is not about the bravado of fighting in war or the glory of overcoming one's enemies. It is a deeply insightful glimpse into the mind of a man, mentally savaged by the reality of the new war in the middle east. Take from it what you will, but it is difficult to believe this is fiction. It must be based on true experience for it to have the kind of sharp, pungent accuracy it does in its detailed and rich descriptions. Those are not the sorts of details that can be made up by someone outside of that reality.
Not quite the caliber of Hunger Games or Harry Potter, but enjoyable never the less. Safe for any reader. On par with books like the Redwall series or the Underland Chronicles (yet without the violence).
I like how important family is to the characters, and regardless of the amazing abilities they have, they seem to have to deal with the same sorts of things everyone else does.
When they all came together in the end to defend the ranch.
When the little girls offered the man trying to bulldoze their home all their "gold"
I think this book was about equal to its predecessor, "Savvy."
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