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Tell My Sons: A Father's Last Letters Hardcover – June 4, 2013

4.7 out of 5 stars 338 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“A gift to us all . . . Every page exudes courage, honesty, and an indomitable spirit. Mark Weber’s story has touched me in such a profound way.”—Mitch Albom, author of Tuesdays with Morrie
 
Tell My Sons is a deeply moving, personal account of a soldier’s journey into an ultimate frontier. As I read Mark Weber’s book, I was astonished by its honesty, courage, and discipline. This book offers one of the most profound and detailed descriptions of the strange world of cancer and should be essential reading for all of us who seek to understand that topsy-turvy terrain.”—Siddhartha Mukherjee, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Emperor of All Maladies

Tell My Sons is one of the most profound and inspirational stories I have ever read. It may have been written for Mark’s children, but it may as well be a treatise for all of us about honest parenting and leadership with character in love, family, faith, and politics. For a man who is facing profound health issues, Mark is doing a remarkable job showing us all how to live with courage and integrity.”—Walter F. Mondale, former vice president of the United States
 
“This book is why I have always been proud to call Mark Weber my son. His ability to reach across complex boundaries and write and speak with such depth and beauty makes him a modern day Lawrence of Arabia. Mark’s passion, attitude, and thoughts about life are what is best about America.”—General Babakir S. Zibari, chief of defense, Republic of Iraq
 
 “A poignant illustration of what being a hero is all about . . . Heroes exemplify invincible courage, character, and perseverance in times of insurmountable odds. Mark embodies these attributes. Tell My Sons will empower the reader with profound lessons of living life with hope and determination.”—John Elway, Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback

About the Author

Lt. Col. Mark M. Weber was born and raised in Minnesota. He has served a total of twenty-three years in the U.S. Army, with five years as an enlisted soldier in the Minnesota National Guard and nineteen years on active duty as a commissioned officer. He has been stationed throughout the United States, at the Pentagon, in Saudi Arabia, and in Iraq. He is a distinguished alumnus of Minnesota State University, holds master’s degrees in history from Jacksonville State University in Alabama and public policy management from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and has served as a policy fellow at the University of Minnesota. His awards include the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, and the Combat Action Badge. Weber lives in Rosemount, Minnesota, with his wife, Kristin, and their three sons.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 5.5.2013 edition (June 4, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345549449
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345549440
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 1.1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (338 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #146,445 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By JerBear on November 28, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bottom Line Up Front - buy and read this book. You'll be glad you did.

As one of the author's former Soldiers, I had high hopes for Tell My Sons. Mark exceeded even my lofty expectations. His wit, candor, and courage are alive in its pages. If you know Mark, or if you've heard him speak, you'll recognize some of the book's anecdotes, stories, and inspiration. His honesty in describing his life, career, and especially the past couple of years is striking.

The author relates the often-humorous details of his life before the Army, describes an exemplary military career, and most importantly tells of his decision to embrace life in the face of adversity that would cause a lesser man to retreat.

Six stars. Read this book. You'll be glad you did.
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Format: Hardcover
This is one of a very few "life altering" reads I have come across in my lifetime. A surprisingly honest and humorous take on mortality, the book is more of a love letter from a husband, father, soldier and humanitarian to the wife and young boys facing an uncertain future without him. Alternating between colorful reflections on past adventures and heartbreaking discussions of present challenges, Mark Weber invokes heartfelt emotion as he reinvents the idea of living life to its fullest. Never failing to learn a valuable lesson from nearly every obstacle (big or small) he's encountered along his journey, the author sums up the most powerful of these lessons in each of this book's eight chapters - in hopes that his sons (and perhaps all readers) can gain perspective, build character, and reach within themselves to leave a positive mark on a world that doesn't often play fair. A must-read book for both men and women, young and old.
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Format: Hardcover
There is so much to this book, I don't know where to begin. If you are looking for the typical dying of cancer book, this is not it. This book is about life, how to make the most of it and find joy, humor and growth even in the dirty, ugly details. There is much to admire in Lt Col Weber's career and life, but he is honest about his mistakes and heartaches as well as his amazing achievements from an ordinary past. This book gave me incredible respect for the difficulties faced by military wives and families. Kristin Weber is a hero and the author gives her the credit she is due for raising his boys and supporting his career through some very tough times. The emotions are raw and not sugar-coated platitudes. I also developed great respect for the way our US military personnel around the world interact with and relate to other cultures. Lt Col Weber certainly stands out in his respect for people of other cultures where he served. This book is about how hard life, marriage, careers, the world political scene and raising children can be. But in spite of all these Bufords, life is wonderful, funny, exciting and pretty much what you make of it. The book has very interesting insights into Saudi Arabian and Iraqi culture, as well as some great lessons on career development, integrity and leadership. The book has something for everyone. It is well written and keeps the reader's interest throughout.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A good friend sent me a YouTube link to a speech that Lt. Col. Weber gave last summer (Summer 2012) at a ceremony celebrating the Army's birthday.

The YouTube link, "The Last Lecture - Army Style", is included at the end of this post.

After watching the speech and being completely blown away by it, I was excited to hear that Lt. Col. Weber has writing a book. I have read the book and it is outstanding. It left me amazed, grateful, and inspired to do more with my life.

Lt. Col. Weber and his family open their lives and hearts to the reader with unbridled honesty. In a world where most people in his situation would want to check out, Lt. Col. Weber handles his situation with courage, dignity, tenderness, and grace. He allows the reader insight into moments with his wife, family, and friends that we ourselves will someday face.

The book is truly an inspiration and I highly recommend it to you.

Youtube Link - The Last Lecture - Army Style

[...]
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have had the pleasure of knowing the author and hearing him speak. My husband served under him and he is truley one of the great leaders. Always inspiring those around him to acheive, always teaching. This book is every bit inspiring as the author. A True Hero. You will not regret reading this book and you will read it more than ONCE.
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I feel blessed that my son had the honor to serve under Mark Weber (Captain at the time) at Fort Leonard Wood. Mark was an inspiration and role model to my son. I can assure Mark that he made a profound difference in my son's life and future. Mark may not ever know how many lives he touched and changed, but I am sure there are countless numbers. I was deeply touched by Mark's well written, honest account of his life, his illness, his love for his family, and his dedication to our country. God bless Mark Weber and his family.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I first met LTC Mark Weber in the Fall of 2008 when I joined the Army ROTC program at the University of Minnesota where he was serving as the Executive Officer. From the beginning, then-MAJ Weber was someone we all looked up to and who pushed us to be the best we were capable of being. He had a great sense of humor and was never afraid to have fun (I still remember him doing an inverted combat rappel off the side of our ROTC building and thinking it was one of the coolest things I'd ever seen). He was one of the best examples of leadership I saw during my first years in the military.

Now to the book review: it was an amazing ride. There were times I couldn't help but laugh for minutes straight, and others where I couldn't help but cry. The messages and lessons he is leaving for his children are stories we can all learn from and be inspired by. The best message I gleaned from the book is this: you will face obstacles, or "Bufords" as LTC Weber calls them, in your life. What matters is how you respond. As evident by how he has dealt with his diagnosis, LTC Weber is a fighter who faces adversity head on. He is also something I am trying very hard to be: a devoted husband and father while being a successful Army officer. Reading how he got to where he is and the lessons he learned along the way has been a privilege. I was lucky to have learned from him personally and through this book.
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