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Damn Few: Making the Modern SEAL Warrior [Kindle Edition]

Rorke Denver , Ellis Henican
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (405 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $8.89
You Save: $7.11 (44%)
Sold by: Hachette Book Group

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Book Description

Rorke Denver trains the men who become Navy SEALs--the most creative problem solvers on the modern battlefield, ideal warriors for the kinds of wars America is fighting now. With his years of action-packed mission experience and a top training role, Lieutenant Commander Denver understands exactly how tomorrow's soldiers are recruited, sculpted, motivated, and deployed.

Now, Denver takes you inside his personal story and the fascinating, demanding SEAL training program he now oversees. He recounts his experience evolving from a young SEAL hopeful pushing his way through Hell Week, into a warrior engaging in dangerous stealth missions across the globe, and finally into a lieutenant commander directing the indoctrination, requalification programs, and the "Hero or Zero" missions his SEALs undertake.

From his own SEAL training and missions overseas, Denver details how the SEALs' creative operations became front and center in America's War on Terror-and how they are altering warfare everywhere. In fourteen years as a SEAL officer, Rorke Denver tangled with drug lords in Latin America, stood up to violent mobs in Liberia, and battled terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. Leading 200 commando missions, he earned the Bronze Star with V for valor. He has also served as flag aide to the admiral in charge and spent the past four years as executive officer of the Navy Special Warfare Center's Advanced Training Command in Coronado, California, directing all phases of the basic and advanced training that prepare men for war in SEAL teams. He recently starred in the film Act of Valor. He is married and has two daughters.

Ellis Henican is a columnist at Newsday and an on-air commentator at the Fox News Channel. He has written two recent New York Times bestsellers, Home Team with New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton and In the Blink of an Eye with NASCAR legend Michael Waltrip.

With all the SEALs' recent successes, we have been getting a level of acclaim we're not used to. But something important has been missing in this warm burst of publicity... Correcting that is my mission here.
My own SEAL dream was launched by a book. My hope is that this one teaches lessons that go far beyond the battlefield, inspiring a fresh generation of warriors to carry on that dream.
-Lieutenant Commander Rorke Denver

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

The title sums up the percentage of SEAL applicants who actually join the operational teams after surviving the notoriously rigorous selection and training. The author, a former director of basic and advanced SEAL training, makes it clear that Rambo-types need not apply, unless they can match their physical prowess and weaponscraft with their ability to mesh everything they do with their teammates every second of the mission, and most of the rest of the time as well. This is a life-or-death matter and makes running the training almost as stressful as undergoing an actual operation—something that this book makes clearer than ever before, even to the seasoned student of special-ops warriors. --Roland Green


"If you've ever wished you could read the testament of a Jedi knight, here it is. Damn Few takes us inside the mind of a born warrior. LtCdr Denver has trained SEALs and led them in combat. He tells us what it takes to reach the super-elite level, why he does it, what it means to him, what he thinks the future holds. This is timeless stuff, worthy of being read in the era of Caesar, Alexander, Leonidas--or a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away."—Steven Pressfield, author of Gates of Fire and The War of Art

Product Details

  • File Size: 2184 KB
  • Print Length: 305 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1401324797
  • Publisher: Hachette Books (February 12, 2013)
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00913OA2G
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,652 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
107 of 112 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Damn Good! February 15, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
Some may wonder why I, a romance novelist, am reviewing Damn Few, a book about training America's elite warriors, the Navy SEALs. That's easy to answer. It's because I am a romance novelist. I write books wherein the male lead is always a hero: a man who does the right thing for the right reasons.

I've read and reviewed quite a few military memoirs. I admire men who put themselves in harm's way for the greater good of their fellow soldiers and their country. Rorke Denver, former head of Basic and Advanced SEAL Training is one of these men. In his book, he shares his own experience as a SEAL and later as the man who directed SEAL Training, as well as his philosophical insights into the mental and emotional makeup of a candidate who successfully completes SEAL training and wins the Trident, the gold pin that is the visible symbol of being a SEAL.

Of all the books I've read about Navy SEALs, this is the first that offers the perspective of an officer who was an active duty SEAL and who was the officer in charge of a SEAL team. Denver shows the hard decisions an officer must make to consider the risk and reward of every operation, to deploy his team effectively, and to know that every decision he makes will affect not only a SEAL in his command but also the wife, children, parents, and siblings waiting stateside for that SEAL to return.

Although not characterized by "war stories" of firefight after firefight, Denver's story has power that comes from the emotion and philosophy he infuses. To be perfectly honest, he had me from the first line of the dedication: "For my wife, my heartbeat." There is not a woman on this earth who would not be affected by such a declaration of love.
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59 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Former SEAL Officer's view April 4, 2013
I recently finished reading Damn Few by Rorke Denver. I will admit I am biased as Rorke is a friend, and I have a great deal of respect and admiration for him. I highly recommend his book to anyone interested in the SEAL Teams. The top reason being, of the SEAL author genre, it is singularly unique. It is so because of the sort of person Rorke is. He is the humble, quiet, highly accomplished professional that the vast majority of SEALs are, or at least strive to be. As far as the quiet part of professional goes, I believe Rorke to be the near polar opposite of the rest of SEAL authors. While a handful of the other writers are, like Rorke, exceptionally well regarded in an operational capacity, (Mark Owen), it's no surprise that many others decided to write books as they feed outsized egos.

It was an accident of fate and a fortuitous set of circumstances for the Teams that Rorke was selected to work on the Act of Valor project. Rorke and the cast deserve a great deal of credit for making what is going to be the seminal SEAL recruitment device for the next decade.

In Damn Few, the reader gets an exceptionally candid look at the Naval Special Warfare Community through the eyes of a well-respected operator and officer. Plus, the reader gets inside the head of a man who continued a mission in print that he started with the movie: to set a shining example to those who will come after him.

I hope that Damn Few becomes Act of Valor`s literary equivalent for recruitment. Saying that a book is the sort of quality that will inspire the right sort of men being inspired to become SEALs, is the highest praise that I can give. Read it for yourself and see.
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33 of 38 people found the following review helpful
By Linda
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I chose the Enhanced Edition through IBooks in order that I would get the audio version of the author describing his experience. I also have a hard copy I will treasure.

The book for me was a continuation of a novice's outlook of the true meaning of Act of Valor other than what the word depicts. I had seen the movie and was moved by the authenticity and portrayal of every SEAL. One knew the SEALS were a close brotherhood and the special operations team you wanted in every terrorist act. I lived through the Vietnam era and the world for a period of time at least the United States appeared safe. The landscape changed on 9/11. Each one of us can remember where we were sitting, what we were doing, and how our minds and bodies reacted to the horror and what potentially may happen.

As the reader moves through the chapters of joining the SEALS, feels their bodies in the cold wash of the Pacific with the SEALS, carrying boats above their heads, running obstacle courses designed for machines, it suddenly brings to light the intelligence, the psychology, the finite details of planning every facet of becoming a seal. It defines the small number in this special breed of warriors.

The master plans designed in missions were so strategic, so detailed, that even a dropped M & M from the target was something a SEAL would never miss. Signs, not words, were just an added language that made their entrance and victory over missions accomplished.

Threaded throughout the stories of being a SEAL, training SEALS, and leading missions were beautiful quotes from past books Rorke read that influenced his life and influences it to this day. They were woven so well one found themselves in his boots in raw sewage thinking of Winston Churchill and that defined this Warrior.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic insight into Navy SEAL leadership
This was a very gripping and interesting read. I finished it in one day, not because it was too short, but because I could not wait to get to the next chapter! Read more
Published 3 days ago by Rforbess
5.0 out of 5 stars inspirational and informative
This book was an inspiration is insured real life stories of work Denver, the United States Navy SEAL. It is what it will be motivational as well as profoundly thoughtful.
Published 3 days ago by Terry L., Brock
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read
A lot of books have been published about the SEALs over the past several years, but few have have been as well written as this one.
Published 5 days ago by CSH
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing read
Rorke is truly a master at what he does. Whether it be in field with the teams or with a pen and paper. His words jump off the pages and you cannot help but read them. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Cyndi
4.0 out of 5 stars Honestly told
Rorke Denver writes eloquently and honestly. I found myself turning pages uncontrollably. I guess what I most admire about Rorke and his fellow warriors is their humility.
Published 13 days ago by Helicopterboyd
5.0 out of 5 stars Proud to be an American!!!!!
Great book God Bless our Military they're why we can sleep in peace at night thank you for your service!!!!!!
Published 22 days ago by DeAnn Redenius
5.0 out of 5 stars What it is to have a brotherhood
Few men have the brotherhood that Denver speak about with his SEALs. Reading Damn Few reconnected me to what it means to have a brotherhood that truly watches your back. Read more
Published 22 days ago by owen marcus
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very interesting book.
Published 27 days ago by Northeast Emmy
5.0 out of 5 stars I purchased this as audio MP3 and listened to it ...
I purchased this as audio MP3 and listened to it in the car during my commute for over a month, three times I believe in total. Mr. Denver does a superb job narrating. Read more
Published 28 days ago by The Swan
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best descriptions to date of BUDS and the warrior mindset
Very well written. One of the best descriptions to date of BUDS and the warrior mindset.
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
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