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American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History Hardcover – Deckle Edge, January 3, 2012

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Editorial Reviews



“Chris Kyle tells his story with the same courage and grit he displayed in life and on the battlefield. American Sniper is a compelling read.” (CLINT EASTWOOD)

“[My] favorite book of the year. Chris Kyle’s American Sniper is an amazingly detailed account of fighting in Iraq -- a humanizing, brave story that’s extremely readable.” (PATRICIA CORNWELL, New York Times Book Review)

“In the community of elite warriors, one man has risen above our ranks and distinguished himself as unique. Chris Kyle is that man. A master sniper, Chris has done and seen things that will be talked about for generations to come.” (MARCUS LUTTRELL, former USN SEAL, recipient of the Navy Cross for extraordinary heroism under fire, #1 bestselling author of Lone Survivor)

“The raw and unforgettable narrative of the making of our country’s record-holding sniper, Chris Kyle’s memoir is a powerful book, both in terms of combat action and human drama. Chief Kyle is a true American warrior down to the bone, the Carlos Hathcock of a new generation.” (CHARLES W. SASSER, Green Beret (US Army Ret.) and author of One Shot, One Kill)

American Sniper is the inside story of what it’s like to be in war. A brave warrior and patriot, Chris Kyle writes frankly about the missions, personal challenges, and hard choices that are part of daily life of an elite SEAL Sniper. It’s a classic!” (RICHARD MARCINKO (USN, Ret.), First Commanding Officer of SEAL Team Six and #1 bestselling author of Rogue Warrior)

“Eloquent ... An aggressively written account of frontline combat, with plenty of action.” (KIRKUS REVIEWS)

“Reads like a first-person thriller narrated by a sniper. The bare-bones facts are stunning. .... A first-rate military memoir.” (BOOKLIST)

From the Back Cover

He is the deadliest American sniper ever, called “the devil” by the enemies he hunted and “the legend” by his Navy SEAL brothers . . .

From 1999 to 2009, U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle recorded the most career sniper kills in United States military history. The Pentagon has officially confirmed more than 150 of Kyles kills (the previous American record was 109), but it has declined to verify the astonishing total number for this book. Iraqi insurgents feared Kyle so much they named him al-Shaitan ("the devil") and placed a bounty on his head. Kyle earned legendary status among his fellow SEALs, Marines, and U.S. Army soldiers, whom he protected with deadly accuracy from rooftops and stealth positions. Gripping and unforgettable, Kyle's masterful account of his extraordinary battlefield experiences ranks as one of the great war memoirs of all time.

A native Texan who learned to shoot on childhood hunting trips with his father, Kyle was a champion saddle-bronc rider prior to joining the Navy. After 9/11, he was thrust onto the front lines of the War on Terror, and soon found his calling as a world-class sniper who performed best under fire. He recorded a personal-record 2,100-yard kill shot outside Baghdad; in Fallujah, Kyle braved heavy fire to rescue a group of Marines trapped on a street; in Ramadi, he stared down insurgents with his pistol in close combat. Kyle talks honestly about the pain of war—of twice being shot and experiencing the tragic deaths of two close friends.

American Sniper also honors Kyles fellow warriors, who raised hell on and off the battlefield. And in moving first-person accounts throughout, Kyles wife, Taya, speaks openly about the strains of war on their marriage and children, as well as on Chris.

Adrenaline-charged and deeply personal, American Sniper is a thrilling eyewitness account of war that only one man could tell.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; Hardcover Edition edition (January 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062082353
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062082350
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12,334 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #92,296 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2,248 of 2,369 people found the following review helpful By D. Roberts on February 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover
When I first posted this review, there were roughly 3000 other reviews and many 1 and 2 star reviews. Most of the low rated reviews were from folks posting negative comments that had not even read the book. They were obviously against the war, didn't like the military, etc. Some of these comments are offensive, at least too me they were. I made a point to bring this to the attention of potential buyers of Chris's book so they wouldn't let the low ratings affect their decision to read, what I think is a very good story. I think this is important to point out and that's why I am including it here. The point here is to be helpful to others. So, with that said, I'd like to update this review a little bit now that over 5000 folks have had the opportunity to read it and leave their reviews, which seem to be a little more objective. I still disagree with others that claim this book is "poorly written". I think Chris, with help of course, did a pretty darn good job describing his experiences. This book was written by a Navy SEAL. Not Tom Clancy. This book is written in what I would call a sort of "conversational style". In other words, he writes like he talks. He is telling you a story or collection of them. I found his honesty refreshing. He makes no bones about the fact that he loves his job. He wasnt the best father or husband at times. He doesnt like politics, etc. I liked his sense of humor (I caught myself laughing out loud at times). I especially liked his discussion on his gear and weapons. It's interesting to read about what sort of equipment someone needs to survive in that kind of environment. He put things in his book that he was constantly asked about. Thats why they are there. The book also has some decent maps and photographs. This is not a book for everyone.Read more ›
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827 of 903 people found the following review helpful By Terrie A. Taylor on January 5, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Chris and Taya were our next door neighbors for most of the time the events in this book were taking place. While Chris has sanitized many of the events he was involved with, the book offers a seldom seen look into the trials and pains that American Forces, especially or SEALS endure along with their family and friends. There are no politics in this book, just a saga of the human side of war and conflict. For me it was a must read and for Chris, I'm sure it was way of purging nightmares and letting the public see that the men who protect us are just as human as we are.
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208 of 247 people found the following review helpful By Douglas Brown on February 8, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
So, I was finishing Mr. Kyle's book the other day and nearing the writing of my review when I saw the terrible news on TV that Mr. Kyle had been murdered. All I want to say is that I'm terribly sorry for Taya, Chris' children and the rest of his family and my heart goes out to them. Chris Kyle was a patriot.
Because this is still a book review, I'll add one more thing. I enjoyed the book greatly. Any gripes I may have with it are minor and would just be nit-picking. I think everyone should give American Sniper a try. I know this isn't a very helpful review, but it is what it is. I gave 4 stars because I couldn't put it down until I was finished and to me, that is all that matters this time.
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787 of 996 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 7, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very broad stroke tale of Chris Kyle's career as a SEAL. Broad in the sense that there is very little detail on actual shots taken/contact with enemies (where he actually engaged targets in his capacity as a sniper).

I was initially going to review the book after having read the first 30% of it which left me a bit disappointed but I decided to give it a chance, and finished it before re-writing my entire review. I fully agree with some of the previous reviews that the writing could have been better and I have to admit that I actually started wanting to skip all the passages written by Chris's wife (Taya) entirely. It does give a bit of perspective on their private life but as a shooter I was more interested in Chris's actual accounts.

I found it very interesting (and initially a bit brazen) how Chris starts his book exactly the same way Carlos Hatchcock* did with his autobiography referencing having had to kill a woman the same way Carlos started his book having had to kill a boy. Later in the book Chris pays homage to Carlos so the similarity became understandable.

* Carlos Hathcock - technically the best sniper ever to have walked the earth and probably the best written Sniper autobiography to date)

Comparing the countless records on fighting in wars like Vietnam compared to modern day warfare in places like Iraq you cant seem to shake the feeling that the enemy guys like Chris face there just aren't cut from the same cloth. The Vietcong were a very formidable enemy, living the war and being excellent at guerilla warfare, tracking, planning and even having some superb snipers in their ranks.
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522 of 682 people found the following review helpful By Shawn Kovacich VINE VOICE on January 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
What a remarkable story of heroism, patriotism, and self-sacrifice by an even more remarkable American, Chris Kyle. A Navy SEAL and highly trained sniper, Kyle is even more remarkable in his straightforward admittance that his accomplishments alone are not to be lauded, but the accomplishments and sacrifices of his fellow military men who sacrificed their vision, limbs, and some ultimately their lives in fighting for the freedoms that we often take for granted, yet hold so dear. It may not be much, but here is one American that is forever grateful and thankful to Chris Kyle and ALL of our brave men and women fighting for our country.

Kyle joins the ranks of such American sniper greats as Carlos Hathcock 93 confirmed kills during the Vietnam War, and whose sniper exploits were so eloquently related to the reader in these two books written by Charles Henderson; Marine Sniper: 93 Confirmed Kills and Silent Warrior: The Marine Sniper's Story Vietnam Continues, as well as, other sniper greats such as; Chuck Mawhinney a U.S. Marine with 103 confirmed kills during the Vietnam War and Adelbert Waldron the previous U.S. Military record holder with 109 confirmed kills.

One particular aspect that I liked about how this book was written was the occasional viewpoint expressed by Kyle's lovely wife, Taya. Although both she and Kyle allude to problems both faced concerning each other and his absence during his military service, one can't help but realize what a truly remarkable women Taya is and Chris is a damn lucky man to have her.
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