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The Devil's Secret Name Mass Market Paperback – December 28, 2004

4.7 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A former Green Beret who fought alongside the Montagnards in Vietnam, Morris, an editor at Berkley Books, was unsuccessful in his attempt to rejoin them after the U.S. pullout, but later helped rescue a number of the tribespeople and bring them to this country. This is but one element in the entertaining chronicle of the author's travels in Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Israel, Lebanon and El Salvador, mostly on assignment for Soldier of Fortune magazine. His goal was to get close to the fighting in hot spots on three continents, soak up local color and have as much fun as he could. The prose is hardboiled, but Morris also pokes fun at himself, especially over his compulsion to recapture the exhilaration of combat. One of the things he learned is that he is not the gung-ho warrior he once was, either in body or spirit. The book closes on a controversial note as Morris argues that most Third World wars are part of a Soviet global effort to gain control of the world's vital resources and sea lanes, that this strategy constitutes not only a continuation of the Vietnam War but is World War III itself, and that if the West continues to ignore this monumental process the U.S.S.R. will eventually be the sole superpower.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Morris, a staff writer for Soldier of Fortune magazine, has written a combination travelogue/memoir of a number of wars, current and past, in which he has either fought or reported. Mostly he just introduces a number of nice and not-so-nice shooters, but there is a blunt message: there is only one war of national liberation, not many, centrally orchestrated by the Soviets through client soldiers and media manipulation. Not a new idea, and not particularly well developed, but the macho nostalgia and the Third World countries are wonderfully realized. Morris is not an uncritical admirer of anti-Communist soldiers, and he makes severe professional judgments on the guerrilla armies he has seen. Though the book is quite disjointed, it will find a place with similar titles. Daring Books has carved a specialized niche in the burgeoning military book market with its stories, generally of the Vietnam War. Morris is the author of the nonfiction War Story (LJ 2/1/79), about the Green Berets.
- Edwin B. Burgess, U.S. Army TRALINET Ctr., Fort Monroe, Va.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks (December 28, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312993412
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312993412
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.8 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,459,457 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
A journalist with an assault rifle and more, Jim Morris is one of the most interesting authors on modern warfare and the media.

Quote from Chapter 26:

"Brown, I've been in three wars in the last six months..."

"I know. I sent you."

"Everywhere I go the bad guys went to the same schools, use the same gear, exchange personnel, and read the same books. ...It's everywhere, and it's all the same war."

Morris gives readers an appreciation of the changes in the nature of the challenge facing a world that wants peace and freedom but constantly finds itself involved in new wars over old causes. Other than some specific sources of support for terrorists, not much has changed since the days of the Soviet Union even before the Iran hostages of 1979. The Devil's Secret Name offers no magic cure, it presents a perspective of familiar and also of unreported international events that is far more real than most Americans ever get an opportunity to know in the mainstream media.

Some readers might find an end of innocence; for others this is masterful storytelling in an enjoyable easy read. So enjoyable that I read it twice.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
As an ex-Special Forces Viet Nam Vet, no author shares my view of combat in South East Asia better than Jim Morris. Easy to read, every word rings true. Great book. Not to be missed.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
From the war in Vietnam to conflict in the Middle East, hero soldier and war correspondent Jim Morris has lived and written about it in a way that gives a reader a brilliantly worded portrait of the violence that threatens all of us and the attitude needed to combat it. After you finish reading this book you have the feeling that if you ever have to go in battle you hope there is a Jim Morris by your side.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The Devil's Secret Name is where International politics, sociology, adventure, and war stories explode into a wonderful read that entertains and challenges you to think in ways that make you surprise yourself. A book written to make a point which it does by offering up wonderful stories that lead the reader to make its conclusions their own. We all believe so much more in ideas we arrive at on our own. Jim Morris shows the way from several perspectives, but always aims towards bringing his readers to see the world through his eyes. In a world full of rhetoric Jim Morris leads by example. Highly recommended. Easy read that leaves you wondering how you just got yourself into some hot internal debates from such wonderful adventure stories. Take the challenge. You will enjoy it.
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Format: Hardcover
Jim Morris is one of the most brilliant and overlooked writers of the last thirty years. Another reviewer compared his work to Jean Larteguy's "Centurions", "Praetorians", and the immortal "Yellow Fever". That really says it all (and it certainly got the feeling right), but I feel that a more accurate comparison would be with David Hackworth, particularly if you consider that Larteguy's books were nominally (and in the case of the aforementioned "Yellow Fever", barely...) fictional. I would reccommend Morris' books to anyone who is interested either in late 20th century history, or in excellent, workmanlike, beautifully expressive writing.
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Format: Hardcover
Jim Morris is one of the better military writers out there who not only knows his craft but is intimate with the subject matter. He, along with Kenn Miller, represent the warrior/scholar approach to writing and provide more than just history. They know how to tell a story and keep you glued to the pages. In the Devil's Secret Name you get Morris in the thick of the Cold War and short accounts of the little wars in between. This is an excellent book and one you should own.
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