In the monsoon season of 1968-69 at a fire support base called Matterhorn, located in the remote mountains of Vietnam, a young and ambitious Marine lieutenant wants to command a company to further his civilian political ambitions. Two people stand in his way. The first is a well-loved combat-weary lieutenant his own age who desperately wants out of the bush but who does not want to leave his Marines with an inexperienced and overly ambitious officer. The second is an angry leader of the company’s radical blacks, who has all the political skill, savvy, and ambition of the protagonist.
As the young lieutenant experiences the costs of combat, he sees the terrible results of his actions and begins to question the value of ambition and skill over compassion and heart.
©2010 Karl Marlantes (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Matterhorn is one of the most powerful and moving novels about combat, the Vietnam War, and war in general that I have ever read.” (Dan Rather)
“Brings a long, torturous war back to life with realistic characters and authentic, thrilling combat sequences.” (Publishers Weekly)
“Unforgettable.… A beautifully crafted novel of unrivaled authenticity and power, filled with jungle heroism, crackerjack inventiveness, mud, blood, brotherhood, hatred, healing, terror, bureaucracy, politics, unfathomable waste, and unfathomable love." (Christina Robb, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist)
I am very torn about this book. Bronson Pinchot does an amazing job making all of the many characters feel like individuals. However, for me, it didn't work for me as an audiobook, in as much, as it just felt like it was taking forever to move along. I have an hour and a half commute every morning, and I just felt that I wasn't progressing fast enough through the story. I switched over to the Kindle version, and really enjoyed it. Marlantes creates some amazing characters and puts them into some trying situations. I am sure they are going to be with me for the rest of my life. Unfortunately, the way that the audio was progressing for me - it felt like that wasn't going to just be a metaphor.
All in all, if you have the time and patience - this is a rewarding experience.
One of the best books I have listened to. The story by itself is wonderful, but Pinchot puts it over the top. He really made the characters come to life by the individual voices he adds for each character. I cant say enough good things about this audiobook. Awesome
I am sure this is a great story. And honestly I am sad I couldn't finish this book because I love historical novels. I purchased this after enjoying every moment of Unbroken. I was excited to read another story of heroism and strength. However, I had to stop listening because the language is so bad. I think there was more cursing than there was story telling.
I wish someone would put out a "cleaned" version of this book because I am sure I really would have enjoyed it.
I had two brothers and many friends who served in Viet Nam and over the years I thought I understood the war and the politics involved. However I found thid story gave me an entirely different view of the war and some of the true victims, our own soldiers. I will try to persuade my brother to look at the novel but he usually chooses not to discuss his experiences or read about other's intrepretations of it. The novel was well done. It gives a feeling for the complicated emotions and daily lives of the grunts who tried to carry out the objectives of the day for the war. Excellent story - even can be read by girls.
The book described the misery of the foot soldier in Vietnam, the waste of human life and the incompetent leadership of higher ranking officers. I would have liked the story to continue for the main character.
While I am glad I stayed with the book to the end, it was a bit too technical for me, a female who has never had any military exposure. Much of the terminology and references were unfamiliar. Even so, the planning, execution and outcomes of the various scrimmages with the objective of 'taking the mountain' were gripping. Writing was profoundly moving and thought provoking, especially with regard to interaction of company troops. For those who have been close to such action, I am sure there will be moments of serious and possibly painful deja vu. If you can handle revisiting such dire circumstances this skillfully written manuscript is for you.
My dad served in Vietnam, and like so many, never shared stories. He was a commander, and I always got the impression that it was very bad. He died in 1974 due to the exposure he faced from agent orange. Listening to this story made his tour seem more real to me, I was only 5-6 at the time. It also brought to light the bigotry that exsisted, something, being an army brat, I blindly thought was non-exsistant in the military. Thanks for a great story.
Some books take me days/weeks to get through and I become concerned about unused credits piling up, but not this book. This is a book that I would sit in the driveway listening too and I watched the time remaining indicator count down with regret. Very enjoyable.
This is an outstanding novel. Marlantes' development of his characters is excellent and in many cases they are developed to die in a war that was at the same time senseless and important, inane and necessary. The flow of the story takes you through the fears and hopes of diverse people thrown into a desperate situation. At times the tension is so thick you can cut it with a K-bar. At other times the release is blinding and passionate.
This is the story of war in all of its manifestations. It exposes the senseless suffering of soldiers who go without food and supplies for days on end due to the incompetence of their superiors. And then it reveals how the soldiers get blamed. It highlights the commitment of fighting men to each other...it exceeds the will to live. It describes the simple pleasures of life in a combat zone.
This is a great book!
this book was recommended to me by a few people and it never failed to live up to the hype . it is read superbly and you get a feeling for everyone in the book love or hate them it leaves a lasting impression at the end as there mission just seems to get worse. its a powerfull book and although its a story about vietnam you cant help thinking all the way through that kind of stuff happened all the time over there which in itself makes the audiobook even more powerfull i myself now recommend it to everyone reading this .
I would recommend this audiobook to anyone who has the slightest interest in Vietnam war stories. It is long but worth every second.
It is graphic, sometimes very graphic however this is one book i look forward to listening to again.
"A military story but a good one"
It?s a military book for sure. There are lots of military stories out there to buy but this one is a beaut. It?s a pretty long one but didn?t feel it. It?s a fully rounded book was sad to have it end. I highly recommend.
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