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Over the years I have read and reviewed numerous books written by U.S. Navy SEALS. This is one of the best ones I have read lately. The author, Chuck Pfarrer, a former Navy SEAL Officer gives us a first hand look at what it takes to be a U.S. Navy SEAL. He relates the many dangerous missions he has been on and his writing style makes you feel like you are there with him and his SEAL team mates. As a former U.S. Navy (regular Navy-1959-1963) sailor many years ago when the SEALS were still called UDT/SEALS, I have always had enormous respect for this Special Ops. unit. If it was not for some medical issues I was going to apply for BUDS training at that time.

This book tells about the author's early life and how he decided to join the Navy. He knew what he wanted right away, which was to become a U.S. Navy SEAL. After Officer Candidate's school he entered BUDS training. It is truly amazing what these Navy Commandos have to endure before becoming fully trained SEALS. If you have any desire to become a Navy SEAL you would be wise to read this book first and even that will not prepare you for the real physical and psychological pressure you will receive in training. There is no tougher military training than to become a U.S. Navy SEAL.

In conclusion, if you are seeking a real thrill ride of real life combat experience, told by someone "who has been there and done that" this book is for you.

Rating: 5 Stars. Joseph J. Truncale (Author: Predator Hunter: A warrior's memoir)
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on April 7, 2014
An excellent account of the making and deploying of a Navy SEAL. The author was in Beirut at the time of the bombing of the Marine barracks back in the 80's. He, like many of us, wonders to this day what the hell we were doing there in the first place. It is still a boiling kettle of the same mixture of people who hate and kill each other as a matter of routine. He tells of the ridiculous rules of engagement then that are still restricting our fighting troops today. Politicians, it seems, do not read history and doom our military to dying for no cause whatsoever. This is a story of extremely tough, extremely brave, and extremely patriotic men way beyond what the average person is capable of. A terrific read that will make you wonder why we are squandering our best trained fighters in the wrong places for the wrong reasons to this very day. You have to say, God bless our patriots.
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on May 11, 2017
This was an incredible tough man throughout his life. What a story about the life of becoming a Navy Seal and then moving up to Seal Team Six, the very best of the best. Lots of action and suspense throughout this book. I highly recommend this book to your readers.
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on June 22, 2014
Chuck Pfarrer is reputedly 'a legend' in the tightly-knit world of Navy Seals. Despite the numerous omissions in this narrative, omissions made necessary by the demands of confidentiality (some of the missions are still classified information) in the shadow world where these units operate, Chuck Pfarrer's story comes across as the authentic voice of a brave and intelligent man. Better than a fiction thriller.
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on October 6, 2015
Detailed autobiography of both his successes and failures as a SEAL, particular attention addressed his time in Beirut. I found that particularly interesting. Pfarrer said this at the end and it really hits home-"I have a bit of advice to offer. Hold on to the people you are close to, and love them fiercely. Get up every morning and live like there is no tomorrow. Because one day you’ll find it’s true."
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VINE VOICEon May 2, 2009
The author's odyssey from delinquent highschooler, to military school, through college, ocs, BUDS training/elimination and then advanced training is fascinating. The book profiles a sustained view inside the soul of a true band of warriors. Young MBA's could learn a lot from study of leadership and organizational structure in the teams.

The operations were interesting although obviously limited in their selection and description due to restrictions. Others have complained of the lack of discussions of many operations, however, my feeling is that the author more than makes up for that in the depth of the detail and of the many sub operations as part of the long deployment in the middle east.

The discussion of the transformation of Seal Team 6 from its original personality cult into something close to the other teams was enlightening.

Where Pfarrer really distinguishes himself is the weaving of the story of his personal life into the book. His transformation from near dropout to military school and the associated change in his behavior was great. His descriptions of his loves and breakups are told with real time passion. He cuts himself no slack as to his personal failings although one wonders how much can be attributed to living a random, high adrenalin life, often alone, far from home and surrounded by women seeking adventure with the worlds few true warriors.

The Seals must train like tomorrow might bring the Super Bowl, Olympic High Diving Finals, mother of all marathons or shootout at the OK corral in some randomly selected place from Holidays In Hell. However, with the addition of Roman tradition that the loosers are eaten by the lions. Team 6 required further separation from his "brothers" in the other teams. Further adding to the adrenalin shocks is the randomly jerked leash associated with the micro management of war by the flotsam and jetsam found high in the halls of power in DC.

The book is well written although some editing errors still remain. It is written as a first person account, not a top down history of the events. It excels in achieving its goal, telling the life of a warrior soul in today's world.
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on August 8, 2015
I love reading about SEALs, especially when the book is written by a SEAL. So I knew this book would be right up my alley. It goes beyond the simple "and then we got all camo-ed up and shot a bunch of people - HOOYAHHH!" Instead, it is a thought-provoking, emotional account of one man's perspective. I feel like the reader can really get inside the author's head and really understand what it was like.

The only thing I didn't like was he spent so much time on Beirut. That isn't to say I wish he had left that out - it needed to be told. But those months take up so much of the book, especially when, by his own account, not a lot happened until the bombing. I feel the book would have been better if he had cut some of his account of Beirut and used those pages to tell of other things.
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on November 30, 2016
This is a very interesting and well written book about Pfarrer's career in the Navy SEALs and his life before and after. It is an honest and reflective account which makes a change from some of the rah-rah warrior-authors around.

Pfarrer has a gift for writing and he uses a few words I'd never heard before like benthic, fellaheen, baleful, hove, putative, sitzkreig, legations. Fortunately my Kindle has a built in dictionary and these occasional words made it a more interesting book to read.

Another intelligently written book worth reading is Inside Delta Force by Eric Haney.
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on March 2, 2015
This is a terrific detailed account of one man's life as a Navy SEAL. I enjoyed it, and he survived many perils to have a great life in the teams. The author did work as a screenwriter and author later, so he has clearly lived an interesting life. I am glad he shared his tales with us. If you are a fan of the SEALS, grab this and enjoy.
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on May 25, 2017
An informative and exciting book encompassing the life of an extraordinary man. Definitely would recommend this book to anyone interested in peeking into the life of a SEAL.
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