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Punk's War: A Novel Kindle Edition

33 customer reviews

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Length: 242 pages

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

With suspense, drama and action as hot as a fighter jet's afterburner, Carroll's account of modern naval aviation reads like Top Gun on steroids. The formula of jet pilots in conflict with superior officers and enemy MiGs will delight the military-techno audience. After a slow start, frenzy and danger aboard a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf provide the backdrop for this tale of swaggering aviators who live on the edge, confounding senior officers and enticing Iranian and Iraqi fighters to come up and swap air-to-air missiles before the six-month deployment is over. Punk is a navy lieutenant, pilot of an F-14 Tomcat a savvy flier with the physical and moral courage to do what is right no matter what the consequences. Soup Campbell is Punk's squadron commander, a glory-hunting egotist who cares only about looking good to his superiors and getting that next promotion. Punk and his squadron-mates fly, gripe, party and do everything possible to stay alive despite their commander's backstabbing incompetence. Aerial dogfights, nighttime in-flight emergencies, downed aircraft, pilots captured and rescued, court-martial and some nifty flying sequences keep up the pace as Punk slowly realizes that duty and patriotism may not be enough to justify strapping himself into a 32-ton jet on a two-second catapult. Loaded with testosterone and military jargon, Carroll's debut speaks volumes about military careerism, aviation technology, naval operations in harm's way and the men who fly and fight for a living. (June)the F-14 Tomcat, and served as a consultant on the film version of The Hunt for Red October.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

The awful title aside, this first novel by former navy pilot Carroll is an exciting tale of a young lieutenant's tour of duty as a fighter pilot on an aircraft carrier stationed near Iraq. "Punk" is the main character's peer-assigned nickname. He and his shipmates endure fear, incompetence, boredom, on-ship politics, bacchanalian shore leaves, and danger from officers as much as from foreign enemies. An intriguing look at the modern military, this novel honors the men and women who serve while helping to explain why so many decline to re-enlist. In a shrinking military, personnel are forced to endure assignments and commitments that are exhausting and unrewarding. Although heavily laced with military terminology and a cast whose nicknames are sometimes confusing, this is a fast and worthwhile debut. For all general libraries. Robert Conroy, Warren, MI
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 944 KB
  • Print Length: 242 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1591141761
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press; Reprint edition (March 15, 2014)
  • Publication Date: March 15, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00H6UOJHW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #618,147 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Charles Good on May 28, 2001
Format: Hardcover
For one interested in modern Naval Aviation, Commander Carroll has written a fascinating volume for your information and pleasure.
The book is a novel about aircraft carrier operations in the post Desert Storm era, enforcing the no-fly zone over southern Iraq.
Here the reader is treated to an insider's look at the workings of an aircraft carrier at sea; launching and recovering jets, night flights, and living conditions aboard ship. But more importantly, Commander Carroll pulls back the cover of glitz and glamor of jet fighter pilots to reveal the inner workings of the mirad of inter-personal relationships that exist in a modern jet fighter squadron, aboard a nuclear aircraft carrier, and ashore in the Pentagon and other command-and-control headquarters that supervise and manage Naval Aviation.
The reader is shown how the decisions of one man in a pressure situation can affect the delicate balance that exists between war and peace.
But there's more. Commander Carroll has also entertwined throughout the entire 224 pages of this story the stuggle of character that is present at all levels of leadership. We see the difficult tension that always exists between honesty and deception, between integrity and pragmatism. There are many valuable lessons about ethics and leadership in these pages.
Don't let the title fool you; this nations needs men like Punk. May his tribe increase!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Wayman Dunlap on February 21, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Punk's War
By Ward Carroll
Naval Institute Press
"Punk's War" is by far and away the best book I have ever read about day to day life in a Navy fighter squadron.
It's near 100% accurate, extremely well written, engaging, amusing, insightful and even thrilling in places.
The author, a Naval Academy graduate and victim of several tours as the Radar Intercept Officer in an F-14 squadron at sea, is currently an English and ethics teacher at the Academy in Annapolis, so he speaks with authority about life on the boat and in a squadron. The fact that he sat in back while the hero, a Tomcat driver with the callsign of "Punk," (having to do with his musical tastes and not his attitude) is a pilot seems to have no adverse effect on the legitimacy of the story.
(For some reasons, backseaters write the best books; pilots fly the best loops.)
Only 224 pages, the hardbound novel grabs the reader from page one and won't let go.
The story begins with the ex-Blue Angel, ego-driven squadron skipper ousting his ready alert five crew - Punk and his backseater - so he can take over the presumed MiG interdiction mission. It won't give away too much to confide that the engagement goes to hell in a hurry.
As the story unfolds, Carroll does a masterful job of combining the day to day minutiae of life on the boat while simultaneously weaving a well-told tale that's said to be fiction but one wonders ...
You'll meet the surface warfare admiral who has no idea how to handle those pesky flyboys, the air wing commander who'd rather be behind a Pentagon desk, the squadron skipper who has let his Blue Angels tour and Topgun graduation go to his head.
Read more ›
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 1, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Ward Carrol has written a letter to the Navy, that details the good, the frustrating, the unnecessary and the necessary of serving our country. This is a clear vision of the challenges that each sailor struggles with on a personal and professional basis. The title works on two levels obviously alluding to the very real conflict that "Punk" Reichert is engaged in over Iraq. Perhaps more important, and more interesting, is the personal combat Punk is fighting; to make sense of a Navy where senior officers seem more engaged in service to self than to unit or country, and self-aggrandizement takes precedence over mission accomplishment, as well as Punk's internal struggle whether to continue in the Navy he loves but often can't understand.
The characters are fresh and ring true from beginning to end. Punk is a great protagonist. Capable of amazing idealism, dogged pragmatism, and a cynical ability to delight in the agony of others, Punk, reminds us of the value of sacrifice, integrity, and being true to one's values. The action moves things along briskly and deftly, without overwhelming the story. The characters are the main thing here, but action fans will get all the insight they could want on carrier air operations and modern air combat.
If you have served in the military recently, you immediately feel at home again. If you haven't, Punk's War will connect you to the real wars our sailors fight every day. It is a hopeful, humorous, finely crafted story that should be read and reread by anyone who cares about the military, and the men and women who serve.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Chris O'Connor on February 10, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This novel is a brilliantly realistic view into the life of Naval Aviators. Carroll is clearly someone who has experienced patrolling the No Fly Zones in Iraq, flying the Tomcat, and living on an Aircraft Carrier with a close-knit unit.
This book is not for the reader who enjoys the Clive Cussler-Tom Clancy hero-saves-the-world-plot, but instead wants to experience what the pilots and NFOs feel when they are out there doing their duty.
A similar book to this, but with a little more fictional and slam-bang plot is James W. Huston's Flash Point, which also gives you a realistic slice of Naval Aviation life.
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