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Generation Kill | [Evan Wright]

Generation Kill

They were called a generation without heroes. Then they were called upon to be heroes. Within hours of 9/11, America's war on terrorism fell to those like the 23 Marines of the First Recon Battalion, the first generation dispatched into open-ended combat since Vietnam.
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Publisher's Summary

They were called a generation without heroes. Then they were called upon to be heroes. Within hours of 9/11, America's war on terrorism fell to those like the 23 Marines of the First Recon Battalion, the first generation dispatched into open-ended combat since Vietnam.

They were a new breed of American warriors unrecognizable to their forebears - soldiers raised on hip-hop, Internet porn, Marilyn Manson, video games, and The Real World, a band of born-again Christians, dopers, Buddhists, and New Agers who gleaned their precepts from kung fu movies and Oprah Winfrey.

Cocky, brave, headstrong, wary, and mostly unprepared for the physical, emotional, and moral horrors ahead, the "First Suicide Battalion" would spearhead the blitzkrieg on Iraq and fight against the hardest resistance Saddam had to offer.

Generation Kill is the funny, frightening, and profane firsthand account of these remarkable men, of the personal toll of victory, and of the randomness, brutality, and camaraderie of a new American war.

©2008 Evan Wright; (P)2008 Tantor

What Members Say

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  •  
    James Gulf Breeze, FL, United States 12-06-11
    James Gulf Breeze, FL, United States 12-06-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting and well paced, though poorly narrated"

    This is the first account I've read that was written by a reporter and I have to say it's a strikingly different experience than those written by troops. Most of it is devoted to the life and death decisions guys have to make out there and he's very good about laying out the facts and letting you consider it rather than injecting his own opinions into peoples' actions. There are a lot of characters and he does a good job of making sure that they are all fleshed out. The point of this book seemed to be as much about getting you acquainted with the Marines' tasks and hardships in overthrowing Saddam as it was getting you acquainted with exactly who we sent over there to do it. Once you get past the narration it's really a good book.

    My only complaint was the narration which ranged from poor to absurd. The first half of it is SO over-articulated that it can be tortuous at times. For whatever reason he feels the need to make sure you don't miss a transition from one syllable to the next by punctuating the move from one to the next with drastic tone shifts and at times it's like he's just crisply sounding out every word. It's hard to describe but it's very unnatural and it ruins the flow of the book almost as much his complete lack of ability to decipher sarcasm and dry humor. Fortunately as the book progresses it becomes a bit more tolerable as he tones it down a little. The narrator also does a lot of accents but they all come out decidedly Mexican sounding, especially the two Filipinos. I'll be watching out for this narrator in the future.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    sherry Rockingham, NC, United States 01-07-13
    sherry Rockingham, NC, United States 01-07-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Here is the truth America"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Generation Kill to be better than the print version?

    Yes


    Any additional comments?

    Here is the truth America my name is joey Willhoyt. This is the truth of war. I know this because I was there I served with 1 battalion Marines in Fallujah as well as 2nd battalion in Al qauim. I live with a story very similar to this in my mind every day. America wants to pat us on the back and say good job and then turn there back on all of it and forget. I wish that I could forget I know I volunteered for the Corps but not for what we did to those people. Why do you think the suicide rate is so high in the Corps now. I put a bullet in my chest I don't now why I'm still here I used a 30-06 missed my heart by a mm I wish I had missed some inoccent people over there too! If you didn't like it read ciderella there are no happy endings in war.

    7 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dr. Ryan 08-25-15
    Dr. Ryan 08-25-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Narration is AMAZING!"
    If you could sum up Generation Kill in three words, what would they be?

    Exciting, Insightful, Intense


    What did you like best about this story?

    The insight into what "really" happens in war. Indiscriminate killings, mistakes, errors of the military, political struggle, etc. Fascinating insight.


    Which character – as performed by Patrick Lawlor – was your favorite?

    Great narration! I almost didn't get this book because of all the negative comments on narration. This guy is AMAZING. Never once does he stutter in 15 hours. His voice goes up and down and he does an amazing job acting out all the different characters. This guy is a pro. One of the best narrated audio books I've ever listened to.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No ... it's too long. That would be impossible.


    Any additional comments?

    Do not let the narration haters sway you from this book. The guy does a great job. The story is fantastic and exciting. Really gives you an idea of how jacked up war really is.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TSU ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA, United States 07-31-15
    TSU ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA, United States 07-31-15

    Jerry Springer

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    "Great book"

    This book is awesome. Raw details of recon marine life in war. Makes you wish you were one of them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    OneLife Raleigh, NC, United States 07-13-15
    OneLife Raleigh, NC, United States 07-13-15 Member Since 2012
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    "It doesn't really get any better than this."

    Very interesting and very sobering. From a Jarhead's perspective, this book is perfect. You should definitely buy it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebecca 05-18-15
    Rebecca 05-18-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Well done"

    Very well read and a great book. Absolutely no complaints. the reader makes you feel like you really know the Marines

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul Sowers 02-27-15
    Paul Sowers 02-27-15 Member Since 2012
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    "Not Just A War Story..."

    This book, while set upon the backdrop of war, is much more than just an account of First Recon's run into Bagdad: It is the story of the soldiers in First Recon. Their thoughts, hopes and dreams for the future. You really feel like you come to know the individual marines.

    Recommended as highly as possible!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Drewmonster 12-16-14
    Drewmonster 12-16-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Military Must-Read"
    What did you love best about Generation Kill?

    I feel it was written with a lack of political bias either way. The book was neither for or against the Iraq war but rather account the events as they happened.


    What other book might you compare Generation Kill to and why?

    I don't know that I've ever read a military account as honest as Generation Kill


    What does Patrick Lawlor bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The reader did a great job.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It was a very honest account of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Marine Corps, and America's military in general.


    Any additional comments?

    The book was assembled and written very well. The story flowed and didn't get lost in "had to be there accounts of military movements" or politics.
    I would strongly urge anyone considering military service to read Generation Kill.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erik Sooke, British Columbia, Canada 06-30-14
    Erik Sooke, British Columbia, Canada 06-30-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Generation X, Generation Y, and Generation Kill"

    This book follows a platoon through the invasion of Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. As a lead element of the Marines main thrust, this unit was heavily engaged for the duration of this short conflict.

    While similar to many books on warfare in terms of describing the action, the hardships, and the horrors of war, where this story differs is in the mental state of the warriors. It is this revelation that is truly frightening and makes me wonder where the next generation of the USA is headed.

    Soldiers of the 1st world war and earlier signed up for the romanticism associated war, and were quickly disillusioned. Soldiers in the 2nd world war signed up reluctantly but with a sense of duty, and soldiers of the Vietnam era went only when forced to. Todays society has Generation Kill, which is an apt name given the obvious relish with which these troops executed their mission and, more disturbingly, with the joy they took in wrecking havoc amongst the civilian population and infrastructure.

    Don't get me wrong, I've been in the armed forces for almost 30 years, so I fully understand collateral damage, ROE, and the other myriad of issues that are associated with warfare in areas of civilian populations. What I couldn't understand about these troops was the uninhibited joy in causing destruction. In one example, they go into a school in a city that has been taken and destroy all the computers and infrastructure. Why would anyone do that?

    What is also apparent from this story is that the Marines had some serious junior officer leadership challenges. Perhaps we shouldn't be surprised, given that this story was written 12 years ago, that the US Armed Forces are now struggling with some fairly serious internal breaches of conduct and behaviour amongst senior officers, as the junior officers and their peers in this book would be the senior officers of today.

    This book is a must read for every American, as it provides great insight into the conduct of warfare in our age. Read it, and reflect upon it. It should give you cause for concern.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian 02-25-13
    Brian 02-25-13 Member Since 2014
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    "Excellant"
    What made the experience of listening to Generation Kill the most enjoyable?

    Hated for it to end!


    What did you like best about this story?

    The memories that flooded back from my time in the Suck!


    What does Patrick Lawlor bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The passion, I felt as if he was the reporter.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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