Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Sunspear or Meereen, I guess.
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Officer and a Gentlewoman; Heloise Goodley; an insight into what goes through the mind of a woman who throws away her city life to become an army officer. While not exactly having a hard time, the culture shock and insights into what puts the cult in culture in respects to the British Armed Forces is a brilliant insight into what military life is like. A must read for anyone who has any interest in what people go through military training, and how it creates the people it does; regardless of wish to sign up or not. Any how have asked me whether to join I recommend this book to them, male or female, regardless of branch or service.Gun Porn- Non-Fiction
A Beautiful Little Operation; Paddy Ashdown; An insight into the Cockleshell Heroes; one of the finest films ever made, and written by a man who has been there and done that, and is now potentially able to make something of a future for the country. A True mover and shakers whose only problem in life is being a Lib Dem.
Target Basra; Mike Rossiter; This is what happened from Blair and Bushes warmongering. Comparing the intercontinental camaraderie of what a further 8 years of war fighting in the same conflicts has done compared to the sectarian attitudes of pre-Iraq and post-Tora Bora command chain with legacy in regards to peace time daisy chain back scratching and ambition, and what fuck ups that causes with the boys at the sharp end. Not many books are able to make a discreet commentary on Political and Hierarchical maneuvering without affecting the boys on the ground.
Black Hearts; Jim L Frederick; In the process of reading at the moment. This is when it goes to shit. When people aren't left supported, and when things go wrong. What is shaping up to be an in depth look at the Psyche of "broken man".
Tombstone; Yang Jisheng; Again, a current reader; currently detailing the pain and suffering of Mao's big plan for China. A lesson in what not to do, the same mistakes oddly reminiscent of what mistakes are being made in the middle east so far; whether it's Syria unable to control itself, or Afghanistan with its "Government in a Box".
No Worse Enemy; Ben Anderson; A heavily biased account, one clearly pro-brit and anti-american, sadly, from an embed. It does not due the Americans justice in the roles they take and the attitude they have to take within their environment. However, if you can look passed the journalistic bias, an interesting story to take.
The Economist; Modern Warfare, Intelligence and Deterrence; This is how wars will look in 10-15 years time. Also, a sneak peak at next years Call of Duty.
Damn Few; Rorke Denver; An account of one of the SEAL's who "acted" in last years "Act of Valor". While the acting was a bit shaky, it's understandable; but I've met a couple of the guys who was in that when I went around America, and seeing that some of the stuff within the movie were motivated by his own experiences, happenings within the SEAL community, and how the future of the unit is now motivated by his well-read history. I've now got the poem by Tecumseh up in the bedroom at the house, it hits hard. "Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours."
The Operators; Michael Hastings; This guy fucked over a 4 star. General Stan McCrystal with this book; something even the Pat Tillman (RIP) and Abu Ghraib failed to do. A Snake-Eater-Eater. Stan McCrystal had insights into how US Policy is passed down overseas, and assumedly, how the inner-workings and inter-party rows and "insults" create a perpetually fucked country. If this is how any "civilised" country's government and military brass operate, be afraid. Be very fucking afraid. And also be glad that "Betray-us" is no longer in any sort of power.
Romance of the Three Kingdoms; Luo Kuan Chung; A historical chinese epic. One of the big 4. This book should be read by everyone some time in their life. It is a culture in itself. Don't expect roiling battles (It is literally "There was a battle, it was won by the blue corner"), or epic descriptions; some are downright funky. But the entire story itself is just one big ability to see into how the decisions of some will ruin one or another. This is what Game of Thrones Tries to Be.
Shogun; James Clavell; This is another book I consider a life time "must read". For similar reasons, an insight into the East; this time China. A business-man friend of mine who deals with the Japanese suggested understanding some of the behaviours of the Samurai class allows an understanding (but not a mastery) of how the Japanese view their business, as it's built on a similar idea.
Born Fearless; Big Phil CampionGun Porn- Fiction
Main Battle Tank; Niall Edworthy
Apache Dawn; Damien Lewis
Hellfire; Ed Macy
Danger Close; Col. Stuart Tootal
Sweating The Metal; Alex Duncan
Bravo Two Zero; Andy McNab
Sea Harrier Over The Falklands; Commander Sharkey Ward
Low Level Hell; Hugh L. Mills Jnr
The Yompers; Jim Gardiner
Pathfinder; David Blakeley
No Easy Day; Mark Owen
Special Forces Pilot; Richard Hutchings
Seal Team Six; Howard E. Wasdin
Fire Strike 7/9; Bommer Grahame
Commando; Chris Terrill
These all speak for themselves. Nothing much insightful, just the hack and slash of what "modern" military life is like, of all sorts; infantry, armour, fair air, gunship, etc.
Rainbow Six; Tom ClancyFantasy/History
Oregon Files Series; Clive Cussler
Bourne Series; Robert Ludlum
Again, the same. All brilliant fun. Juan Cabrillo in the Oregon files is quite possibly one of my favourite characters ever. John Clark shortly after (Leiv Schreiber! Willem Dafoe? Fuck yes), and Bourne is so well written; far more so than Bond (who is quite possibly one of the few characters who does the films better than the books; if you discount Moore and Lazenby anyway.
A Song of Ice and Fire; GRRM.; The definitive decade of the series, even if it's coming up on 20 years old. Byzantine politics, brilliantly diverse characters (Varys, Littlefinger, Thoros (although that might well be because Paul Kaye is the actor), Sansa (Yes, so much yes, one of the best in the books), and Jaime). I can't praise it enough. Don't waste your time with the TV show, read the books instead. Or watch the show, but don't bother waiting for the show to catch up. It's still about 3 books behind Book 3.Humour
Abarat; Clive Barker; KING OF WEIRD. Clive Barker is nothing compared to this guy. A setting utterly unique, as far as I can tell. Although written for younguns, it's very "Brothers Grimm", and quite dark (but safe enough to read for them; my neice, 7, loves it when I read to her), and with enough subtexts and comments for the slightly bigger kids such as ourselves to enjoy it.
Damnation Game; Clive Barker; The best horror novel, bar none. This is the real dark shit. Other faustian pacts don't come close to this; hits hard, and always hits where it hurts. A vile and disgusting ideal. Something that puts Poe and Lovecraft right into the heart of "tame"; as good as they are, they were inherently tame. This is the modern dark shit.
The Demon Cycle; Peter V. Brett; A well represented, and very easy to follow typical storyline. Didn't like the stereotypical characters, or the fucking annoying switch of attitudes in the second book, but its an easy uncomplicated read, that boils down to being a DnD storyline on paper/ebook, or the literary version of what Dragon Age is/was.
I'll Go Home Then ,It's Warm and Has Chairs; David Thorne; This is utterly hilarious. I won't explain why; I'll link to it instead. Here, and Here. Also "The Internet is a Playground"; same author.
1000 Years of Annoying the French; Steven Clarke; Fuck the French. Like Napoleon selling everything west of the Mississippi, for around 20 cents a mile.