• Black Hearts

  • One Platoon's Descent into Madness in Iraq's Triangle of Death
  • By: Jim Frederick
  • Narrated by: Corey Snow
  • Length: 12 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 03-25-13
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (462 ratings)

Regular price: $29.36

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Publisher's Summary

This is the story of a small group of soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division's fabled 502nd Infantry Regiment - a unit known as the Black Heart Brigade. Deployed in late 2005 to Iraq's so-called Triangle of Death, a veritable meat grinder just south of Baghdad, the Black Hearts found themselves in arguably the country's most dangerous location at its most dangerous time. Hit by near-daily mortars, gunfire, and roadside bomb attacks, suffering from a particularly heavy death toll, and enduring a chronic breakdown in leadership, members of one Black Heart platoon - 1st Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Battalion - descended, over their year-long tour of duty, into a tailspin of poor discipline, substance abuse, and brutality.

Four 1st Platoon soldiers would perpetrate one of the most heinous war crimes U.S. forces have committed during the Iraq War - the rape of a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and the cold-blooded execution of her and her family. Three other 1st Platoon soldiers would be overrun at a remote outpost - one killed immediately and two taken from the scene, their mutilated corpses found days later booby-trapped with explosives.

Black Hearts is an unflinching account of the epic, tragic deployment of 1st Platoon. Drawing on hundreds of hours of in-depth interviews with Black Heart soldiers and first-hand reporting from the Triangle of Death, Black Hearts is a timeless story about men in combat and the fragility of character in the savage crucible of warfare. But it is also a timely warning of new dangers emerging in the way American soldiers are led on the battlefields of the 21st century.

©2010 Jim Frederick (P)2013 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Harrowing account of the atmospherics, commission and aftermath of a war crime.... A riveting picture of life outside the wire in Iraq, where '[y]ou tell a guy to go across a bridge, and within five minutes he's dead." ( Kirkus Reviews, starred review)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book and story

Very detailed book with a good storyline. Actually facts and details make this a very interesting book to read.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Good story

this overall is a good book but the narrator wasn't as good as I would have liked!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

gritty and gripping

No fluff piece, this is an honest account of the nightmares faced by one of many American army units in Iraq. I didn't know much about how the army is organized prior to this book, Black Hearts was informative and entertaining, even for someone unfamiliar with the setting.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Phenomenal

Any military leader, regardless of rank, regardless of branch, needs to read this book. It is a grand lesson.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Mind blown.

Completely mind blowing. Must read for anyone in uniform specifically in a leadership position. All I can say is wow.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Black Hearts

A story of a group of soldiers that work in the most unfortunate circumstances in Iraq. Toxic leadership, lack of unit cohesion, and poor morale are all of the symptoms that all of these men face. Many soldiers suffer dyer consequences and difficulty when trying to push their leaders to understand whom they are leading. A great book for those that care understand how important leadership is in combat.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Informative

A chilling look into what a lack if leadership can do to a military unit. A must read for military leaders.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

excellent

loved it. I like how they show the context leading up to the crime. something that was never divulged by the media.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Leadership.

Great lesson in leadership and how bad leadership styles can form into a bigger issue under certain situations.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

great inside a toxic leadership environment

great inside in to a unit at all levels with toxic leadership and the consequences of their actions on the soldiers on the front line