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Matterhorn Audiobook

Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War

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Publisher's Summary

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.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

©2010 Karl Marlantes (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (6505 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Drucilla Georgetown, TX, United States 12-01-11
    Drucilla Georgetown, TX, United States 12-01-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Gripping, harrowing - narration poor"

    I started this book with some trepidation as I knew it was going to be an emotional, trying experience. I've listened to about two hours of it so far, and know without a doubt that this is going to be a great novel. The only bad thing is trying to get past the narrator, who sounds like he is just beginning to learn his craft, flat and with inappropriate pauses and segues; unable to provide different characters with different voices. Because I see that so many others have rated this narrator highly, I'm hoping that he will improve greatly as he progresses through the reading of this book. For now, the narrator is the only fly in the ointment of my enjoyment of the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melanie G Guerneville, CA USA 11-30-11
    Melanie G Guerneville, CA USA 11-30-11 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Academy Award Level Performance"

    This is the BEST audit book I have listened to. The story is riveting and the narration is awesome. Bronson Pinchot is amazing - he is THE best narrator. He doesn't read the book, he acts the book. He deserves not only an award for his reading but to be paid a premium - he is that good. I have a long commute and it's a good thing because I listen to this book for 2 to 3 hours at a stretch and when I reach my destination, I don't want to turn it off. Excellent, excellent, excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    11-29-11
    11-29-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Gripping story of Vietnam War experiences."

    Good recitation and fictionalization of turmoil of a very troubled time in US history and a very difficult war.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joshua Omaha, NE, United States 11-26-11
    Joshua Omaha, NE, United States 11-26-11 Member Since 2010
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
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    Story
    "Double Thumbs Up"

    This is the kind of book that I really enjoy - not a "war novel" but a real character driven story that takes places in a war. If you're looking for a "gory war story" all battle and fighting, then this isn't your kind of book, though there is some of that as well. The author very effectively took me through the high and lows and at times I had a hard time shutting the book off (as I mostly listen on my commute). The character development was natural. The exploration of racism in a war-time environment was done in a way that wasn't preachy, didn't push a political agenda, and laid out the sad complexities of human interactions in a way that gave me a glimpse into something I had not thought of previously. It's one of those books I would have zero reservations about recommending to anyone because I think that anyone would enjoy the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    just a guy 11-26-11
    just a guy 11-26-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    11
    2
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "Double Thumbs Up"

    This is the kind of book that I really enjoy - not a "war novel" but a real character driven story that takes places in a war. If you're looking for a "gory war story" all battle and fighting, then this isn't your kind of book, though there is some of that as well. The author very effectively took me through the high and lows and at times I had a hard time shutting the book off (as I mostly listen on my commute). The character development was natural. The exploration of racism in a war-time environment was done in a way that wasn't preachy, didn't push a political agenda, and laid out the sad complexities of human interactions in a way that gave me a glimpse into something I had not thought of previously. It's one of those books I would have zero reservations about recommending to anyone because I think that anyone would enjoy the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    elizabeth pittsford, ny, United States 11-25-11
    elizabeth pittsford, ny, United States 11-25-11
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    2
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    "Heart wrenching compat story"

    Wow. Destine to become a classic. All at once a compelling and horrifying tale of jungle warfare. I felt as if I were right there; rain soaked, terrified and fighting for my life. Not a light read by an means, but immensely worthwhile. My hear broke for the young men facing such challenges in war and when they returned home.. Thankful that we have learned to separate the warrior from the war...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Washington, DC, United States 11-16-11
    Amazon Customer Washington, DC, United States 11-16-11 Member Since 2015
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    14
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    "Matterhorn - the definitive Vietnam war novel"

    Let me preface my review by admitting that I was reluctant to give this book a try based on content alone. In my mind, Vietnam had been well tread by 2010. I had grown weary of the subject after four decades of films addressing the American war in Vietnam ("Platoon", "Apocalypse Now" and "Rescue Dawn" come to mind). After all, this was my father's generation's war. My generation has a war of its own (two, in fact) that begs to be addressed so that we can come to grips with the personal and cultural significance of both Iraq and Afghanistan. Giving in to yet another Vietnam work of fiction seemed counterproductive.

    Simply put, I was wrong. In Matterhorn, Karl Marlantes manages the remarkable feat of giving fresh perspective to a 40 year old war, one whose subject matter has been trampled to the ground by decades of other artists and documentarians. Not only does he sketch out an incredibly complex and nuanced cast of characters, he also manages to vividly convey the powerful emotions of war with such success that few other works about any war could compare. Of the war novels I've read, only "From Here to Eternity" manages to deal with the existential questions of war with the same level of consideration and only "War and Peace" manages to weave as rich a tapestry of characters, events and place as "Matterhorn". In "Matterhorn", Marlantes has written the definitive Vietnam novel.

    As a side note, the performance given by Bronson Pinchot was great. He gives a fantastic reading that really added to my enjoyment of the novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dawn alva, FL, United States 11-12-11
    dawn alva, FL, United States 11-12-11
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    "eye opening"

    I do not know much about the Vietnam war and I have never read a book about it, or thought Id be interested in one. I only know what I've seen in movies or T.V. I have nothing to compare this book to but I absolutely loved this book. If you are like me and want to know what it was like in the Vietnam war from the Marines perspective I recommend this book. I tried to put myself in their place on Matterhorn but obviously I could not. I find my self wondering more and more about this story on a daily basis. I now understand that we can never win in this type of war, and we have not learned our lesson from it. If you want a book that will change your life this is it. It was very moving and sad and made me very angry that we went to this war. I happened to be almost done listening listening to it during veterans day 2011, I guess it was meant to be

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara 11-10-11
    Barbara 11-10-11 Member Since 2015
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    "Best audiobook I've heard so far"

    Bronson Pinchot manages to make you feel you're in the presence of many men, each sharply drawn with a distinctive voice, regional accent, education level. He gives a real performance, not merely a reading, of this moving, profound and important story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    walter 10-31-11
    walter 10-31-11 Member Since 2011
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    4
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    "Well worth the time and money (credit)!!"

    Language (lots of the "f" word) takes some getting used to but I'm sure it was that way. But, the story, the humanity, the perspective of the main character are all so well done that, aside from my fear that I would involuntarily say "pass the f.....ing milk" at breakfast one day, I was enthralled. Great listen. And Balki was excellent. I hope he reads more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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