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Call of Duty: My Life Before, During and After the Band of Brothers Paperback – May 5, 2009

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Call of Duty: My Life Before, During and After the Band of Brothers + Brothers in Battle, Best of Friends + Easy Company Soldier: The Legendary Battles of a Sergeant from World War II's "Band of Brothers"
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Second Platoon was indeed 'blessed' to have Buck Compton as our leader. He was a quiet and strong officer who, above all, listened and talked to all men under his command. I could never say enough to express my thanks and admiration for Buck Compton."
-William "Wild Bill" Guarnere

About the Author

Marcus Brotherton, a former newspaper reporter and a professional writer, is the author or coauthor of seventeen books.

Lt. Lynn "Buck" Compton (1921-2012) was a collegiate sports star, esteemed war veteran, detective, attorney, and judge. As a second lieutenant during World War II, he commanded the second platoon of Easy Company in the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, part of the 101st Airborne Division.

Reader of over four hundred audiobooks, Dick Hill has won three coveted Audie Awards and been nominated numerous times. He is also the recipient of several AudioFile Earphones Awards. AudioFile includes Dick on their prestigious list of Golden Voices. --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reprint edition (May 5, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425227871
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425227879
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #570,032 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 89 people found the following review helpful By Graves VINE VOICE on July 17, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I looked forward to reading the autobiography of "Buck" Compton, one of the officers of easy company in the now famous Band of Brothers. There are already several very good autobiographies out by some of the surviving members of E company of the 506 PIR of the 101st Airborne division but they are almost exclusively by what are called `Taccoa men,' that is men who were part of the original members of the company when it was formed. Compton was not a Taccoa man. He joined the regiment before it entered combat but after it had been forged into a close knit unit. The insight he might bring to this, I thought, would be fascinating.

Unfortunately, while other books by members of E company are well written, this is not. Personally I blame the editors at "Berkley Caliber" who should have seen the problems and addressed them before this went to print. Some details are organizational and some do reflect Compton's style but both are things the editors should have looked to.

For example it is common with these books to start with some dangerous event and then after wondering `how did I get here?" you go back to the start of the life that led you to that point. Buck starts this way, talking about the first time he jumped from a plane, but then with shaky starts you are moved to Normandy and then his first fight where his gun jambs and then, after 20 pages and multiple false starts do you go back to his youth. The editor should have seen this for the mess it is and sorted it out.

At barely 250 pages this is a fairly short book, most of the others are around 300 pages but that is less my concern than how much, or rather how little, focuses on his time in Easy company. In a 250 page book Mr. Compton joined easy company on page 90 and by page 152 the war is over.
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83 of 96 people found the following review helpful By DarthRad on July 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Since the success of the HBO series "Band of Brothers" (BoB), several other books have come out about some of the key members of that story.

So far, these books have included autobiographies by Dick Winters in "Beyond Band of Brothers", Bill Guarnere and Babe Heffron in "Brothers in Battle", Donald Malarkey in "Easy Company Soldier" , and Lynn "Buck " Compton in "Call of Duty". David Kenyon Webster had earlier written his war autobiography in the 1950's, and this was finally published in 1994 with help from Stephen Ambrose as "Parachute Infantry". In addition, a separate biography of Dick Winters - "Biggest Brother" - was written by Larry Alexander.

Reading all of these books and re-watching the HBO movie series on DVD has a Rashomon-like quality. Details of how things happened in E Company's WWII campaign change from one storyteller to the next. Like Rashomon, from the differences in the stories, it is possible to glean insights into the characters of each of these men and how they wanted to remember themselves.

As mentioned by other reviewers, of all of these books, this one by Buck Compton actually has the least amount of information about E Company's actions during WWII. It does turn out to be an excellent study in the life and times of the Los Angeles area from the Depression all the way through the 1980's. In particular, the section on Compton's career as an LAPD policemen and then district attorney read like something out of "LA Confidential".
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Toe Tag on May 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Buck Compton is a true American hero. Regardless of how much he likes to down play is place in the war. He was a paratrooper, a great American and a man deserving of far more credit than he will allow to be bestowed upon him.

This is, however, not a war book, although it does cover Lt. Compton's time in service. It also covers his youth, his college years, and the years he spent after the war as a police detective and lawyer. In this light, it provides a great deal of information about the man, and his experiences.

I liked this book and think it's well worth the time to read. But I found it quite interesting because it is the only example of a book that follows the life of a paratrooper after the war in any great detail.

However, if you're looking for a military history book you might enjoy Don Malarkey's fantastic book about his experiences as a paratrooper serving with Lt. Compton. Between Malarkey's bravery and Compton's leadership they were a rare team.

Over all, this book is a quick, light read you could finish over a couple of weekends. If anything it proves one thing. That generation refused to give up when the times were hard and got worse.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Craig A. Williams on October 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is more than a re-telling of Band of Brothers. But I really only appreciated that fact when I had finished reading the book.

I have read most of the books written by or about members of Easy Company. I do the same thing every time; that is, to approach it with the idea that the material will expand the information in the Ambrose book, and bring even more details of the fighting. That's not exactly the case here.

Reflections on Band of Brothers deal mostly with Mr. Compton trying to correct inaccuracies in the mini-series or clarifying events that are depicted that didn't actually happen. I found some of the effort to correct the mini-series sort of squashed my fun as I had accepted the HBO series as accurate. I'm fine to now know that some of the events are made up, but it doesn't in any way make me appreciate the series any less. Rather, it adds clarity and helps explain the truth behind some of what we see on the screen.

Really, the real joy of the book had little to do with Band of Brothers. I was fascinated to read of Mr. Compton's early career as an actor. I was inspired by the way he worked to get on with his life after the tragic death of his father. Some of the most interesting reading was the coverage of life after the war. The people he came into contact with and the events he was involved in were just terrific reading.

My favorite part of the book was the rant portion at the end. It was nice to read what someone as experienced with life as Buck Compton thinks about the state of our nation. I'd like to make that section required reading for all high school students. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in modern culture or contemporary political science.

If you're looking only for another re-telling of Band of Brothers, this is not your book. If, on the other hand you want to read about the life of a true hero, one of the Band of Brothers, this book is a must for you.
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