In one of the most compelling combat narratives ever written, Staff Sergeant David Bellavia, an Army infantry platoon leader in Iraq, gives a teeth-rattling, first-hand account of 11 straight days of heavy house-to-house fighting during the climactic second battle of Fallujah. His actions in the firefight, which included killing five insurgents in hand-to-hand combat, earned Bellavia the Bronze Star, the Silver Star, and New York State's highest military honor, the Conspicuous Service Cross. He has been nominated for the Medal of Honor and for the Army's second-highest combat medal, the Distinguished Service Cross.
©2007 David Bellavia; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.
"[W]ill satisfy readers who like their testosterone undiluted...a precise, hour-by-hour account of the fighting, featuring repeated heroic feats and brave sacrifice from Americans." (Publishers Weekly)
David Bellavia's memoir "House to House" describes the intense fighting and the sacifices made by our forces in Iraq in raw detail. If you are looking for a first-hand account of what is really going on in Iraq then this is the book you should download. David, thank you for your service to our country.
Very near the top. Story is just amazing and author brings you along so well.
when author fights by himself in the house near the end of the book. Also when he recounts his interactioins with his son it just tore me apart. Reminded me of my son and having to leave him and his mother when I travel.
Have not listened to one of his other performances but this was truely stellar.
You bet....but I forced myself to break it into little pieces to make it last.
I was thinking this would be similar to many other similar books I read but I was absolutely floored by the emotion, and the feeling that pours forth from this book. Only regret is not purchasing sooner. You will judge other books of this type by this book from now on.
This book gives a brilliant insight of what it was like to be in the US Army, in Iraq, post Saddam. The author is very funny, honest and doesn't spare the listener from any of the horrors of war. This is a book you must get.
I think this is a great book. I've read or listened to many books about the wars in Iraq (including another that focused on Fallujah) and AFG. and think this is one of the best. Although I like almost all of the other books, this one really gives a sense of what the weeks, days and hours for Staff Sgt. Bellavia and his unit were like (unrelentingly brutal). It gives details about things I've never thought about before - what it's like to have lacerations from flying shrapnel all over ones face and body in a filthy, bacteria laden environment (the result is intense infection), or the consequences of not being able to take off combat boots for days on end (painful, rotting feet) - and those are just a couple of the "little" things.
I wish every American would read this. As our troops return from multiple deployments, it's extremely important that the general population be educated about what they've endured. I can't imagine anyone reading this without coming away more understanding of and compassionate towards our combat veterans (and active duty service members).
Finally, I can't say enough good things about the narrator - he is fantastic.
This is one mans view of the US assault on Fallujah, if you want an overview of strategy this is not the book for you. This is about the struggle of Staff sergeant Bellavia and his platoon as they fight house to house in the city of Fallujah. Personally I like the detail and the perspective from the man on the ground, no gloss, no political spin, just the raw details as he sees them. The saying "someone has to do it" in never more appropriate than in this book. War is not clean, surgical or all electronic yet... We still rely on the "Warrior" despite the spin often portrayed in the media. The book does not always read well but this is not meant to be a classic this is one mans perspective and I think he does the job well. You have to admire anyone who is prepared to place themselves in harms way in situations like this, God Bless our troops may we always support them, despite the social/political climate.
SSG Bell relates his story of the battle of Fallujah and completely involves the reader. Fascinating and can't put down story everyone ought to read(listen). It makes you want to scramble for your flac vest. Oh, I left mine in the arms room 35 years ago. What these men went through does not compare at all to my 20 plus years in the Army and makes me need to back up to the pay table for my retirement check. Heartbreaking and inspiring at the same time.
Hooah, hell Thank god for the American soldier.
This is a great book. Not good, great. Full-on immersion into the life of an Army Infantryman from go (wading through sewage to get to an objective), no blinders or Political Correct-washing.
Fast, hard, and real - and read by the great Ray Porter.
Really good honest account of a soldiers time in a battle zone. Reflects the brutal reality of life in combat as an Infantry man.
The writing is detailed, intense, and present, and HUGE kudos to the excellent narrator for bringing that all through. I spent A LOT of time in my car, after having parked for the day, just to listen to more of this book. Superb.
Absolutely! It is a phenomenal story of battle and brotherhood, read by (in my humble opinion) the finest audio book narrator EVER.
The sense of the author as a human shines through. I love the camaraderie the men share, and the lengths they are willing to go to for one another. War is terrible, but for some men it brings out the very best of human nature. Absolutely incredible. And even with the serious subject matter, there were several times I laughed out loud!
You are probably all tired of hearing me say that Ray Porter is the God of Audio. TOUGH!! I'm gonna say it again!! With his masterful telling of the story, each character is immediately recognizable and you get a real sense of the person. Mr. Porter, if you ever read these reviews, I'd like to personally thank you for the hundreds of hours we've spent together. You are a genius!
Yes, but circumstances dictated otherwise. I will listen to this book again.
Want to know what a stand up guy Mr. Bellavia is? He was awarded the Silver Star for his actions during the second Battle of Fallujah and he never once refers to that award in the book. Instead he focuses on the bravery of his comrades while openly discussing his own perceived shortcomings and fears. He is a true Hero. Bless you, Sergeant Bellavia.
"Epic is the word!"
Be under no illusion - this is a warts-and-all story, and not for the faint-hearted. The context could be controversial, and to call this book a "celebration" of men in combat feels very wrong, but it comes close to describing the story. As a lifelong Navy supporter, this has given me a new-found respect for the infantry.
It is not all unrelenting combat, and the humour it contains perfectly illustrates young men needing a release in stressful situations. I have laughed more than a few times.
As a final note, Ray Porter's narration is masterly. The tone-of-voice is just right, and it feels like Ray is sitting in the car, telling me a story. Fantastic.
I was listening to this at every opportunity over the day or so I took to complete it. Exciting, thought provoking and utterly gripping. I'm so glad I purchased this and if it was physical book I think it would be in a prominent position on my shelf. This download will be listened to again without a doubt.
The narrator really brought the characters to life
"Great content, great listen"
The depth of the content is great and the authors takes you too the heart of the battle and keep you there. The way the guys are feeling and acting is all put out there for you to get involved. It's well narrated and the sound quality is also good. A must listen.
"pretty good, just doesn't quite hang together"
I downloaded this because I'd just finished watching Generation Kill on TV and it got me really interested in the lives of military personnel. I did enjoy this book. It feels like an honest portrayal - the storyteller comes over as very brave and strong but also fallible and, on several occasions, a little bit deranged. And in a lot of the sections you feel like you know what it would be like to be out there. The bits I liked least were the (long) battle scenes. He doesn't give any real sense of time so you never know whether the events are spread over days or just minutes. Also he seems to take a lot of very odd decisions which kind of jar with the narrative. I'm sure a lot of us would do some strange things under that kind of stress, but it's never really explained. But overall still a worthwhile and interesting listen and a good insight into the life of a soldier
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