Book Reviews

Reviews of books by MWSA members. Reviews appear in reverse chronological order, with the most recent review posted appearing first.
Note: Some older reviews are being reposted to this site and those will appear out of order.

Recall! Return of the IRR

Title: Recall! Return of the IRR
Author: Doug DePew
Genre: Non-Fiction memoir
Reviewer: Jim Greenwald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1466216468

There hadn't been a full-scale recall of the Individual Ready Reserves since the Korean War. In January of 1991, with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union, many people believed it would take World War III to trigger a recall of the IRR. Many people were wrong. They came from cities and farms and towns in every corner of the country. With only a few days' notice, they quit their jobs, dropped out of college, kissed their girlfriends or wives, and got on planes to Atlanta, Georgia with nothing but the clothes on their backs. They had long hair, beards, and bad attitudes. They descended by the thousands on Fort Benning, Georgia, and they were not happy about it at all.

In this entertaining, true story, the author relates his own experiences as one of the twenty-thousand IRR recalls who were ordered back to active duty in support of Operation Desert Storm. In a story reminiscent of "The Dirty Dozen" times ten thousand, the author takes you through the entire experience from beginning to end. He carries you along for the ride and explains exactly what it was like to be a recall. With the many IRR recalls over the last ten years of warfare, this first hand account could shed some light on how the current era of recalls began.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
DePew, Doug

The Deguello

Title: The Deguello
Author: Scott Zastrow
Genre: Military Army
Reviewer: Jim Greenwald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1257058266

We simply call it 9/11 now. That day means something different to so many people, but for ten Green Berets, it means even more. Just days after the horrific attacks in New York, a handful of Green Berets from the decorated 5th Special Forces Group were secretly inserted deep behind enemy lines in Northern Afghanistan to set the stage for the upcoming War on Terror. Their mission was to seek out and kill as many Taliban and Al Qaida forces as they could find. Go inside the legend of one of Americas most elite units in this exciting and sometimes humorous account of their avenging the most horrific terrorist attack we have ever experienced.

Written as a fictional story and firsthand account of the actual events that transpired for the first Special Forces A-Team into Afghanistan after 9/11, The Deguello pulls the reader into the actual Team. You get the feeling you are right there with them as they infiltrate Afghanistan, attack enemy forces, get ambushed, train the Northern Alliance and move on the capitol city of Kabul. You get a sense of the camaraderie and brotherhood of being on a Special Forces A-Team and how these men train and fight.

Not written like a typical military historical book, this is a story based on the actual events that occurred to start the War on Terror. The reader is brought along from the very beginning and watches the entire story unfold before their eyes from the attacks of September 11th all the way through the dramatic and exciting conclusion of the assault on Kabul.

“This book is for Joe,” says the author, Scott A. Zastrow, a former Green Beret with more than 20-years in the Army. “With all the books out there by military historians written for the small group of intellectuals who enjoy them, Joe is kind of left out in the cold. He’s bored by statistics, random facts of supposed historical significance, and overblown dramatics that they will easily call bullsh*t on. When reading the Deguello, Joe will say ‘I can see that happening; I’ve done that; I’ve said that; I want to do that.”

When asked why this book is different than other historical military books about Afghanistan, Zastrow says, “It’s not your typical hubristic story of ‘look how cool I am’. It’s a real story about real men doing what they get paid to do. A bunch of jackasses who are good at their jobs and who made the best of the situations they were put in. It just so happens these jackasses were called to do their jobs at a pretty significant time in American history, and they did it very well.”

Nothing we know of the War in Afghanistan would be possible had it not been for what these men did. Bagrahm Air Base is now the largest Coalition Base in Theater and was held by the enemy when this Team arrived. Read how it all began in this exciting, action packed and sometimes humorous account of one our Nation’s most elite Special Operations units. They accomplished what no unit or larger force has ever done before……..or ever will again.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Zastrow, Scott

You Can't Outsource Weight Loss But You Can Lose Weight and Stay Thin Forever

Title: You Can't Outsource Weight Loss But You Can Lose Weight and Stay Thin Forever\
Author: Ed Boullianne
Genre: Non-Fiction, How To
Reviewer: Joyce Faulkner

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0984389806

You Can't Outsource* Weight Loss...But You Can Lose Weight and Be Thin Forever! (* With a pill or meal delivered to your door.) Retired Navy Captain and former combat jet aviator, Ed Boullianne was devastated by the tragedy of his 46-year old sister's death. He was determined to discover why so many Americans like his sister suffer from obesity and poor health. Her early death became the catalyst for his successful weight loss journey and for sharing what he's learned with others struggling to achieve permanent weight loss. You Can't Outsource Weight Loss provides a no-nonsense way to lose weight and keep it off. This straight-forward guide doesn't recommend gimmicky diets or require super-human willpower. Ed has successfully maintained his ideal weight for over seven years, even while eating pizza and drinking wine. He distills confusing, contradictory information and dispels the abounding misinformation about weight loss. He provides a practical, do-able guide for your own weight loss journey with research-based facts, personal examples, useful charts, "green, yellow, and red light" foods, easily implemented practices and hilarious cartoons. Ed initially thought weight loss would be easy, approaching it with the resolute determination of a "can-do" pilot. But like so many of us in the United States, he found it challenging. He tried various methods to quickly lose weight without really understanding the fundamentals of how the human body works. Instinctively, he knew he had to know more and learned how to approach weight loss in a holistic sense. You Can't Outsource Weight Loss... shares what he learned about weight loss and healthy living as he realized that weight loss is one of the few areas of your life that can't be outsourced. You Can't Outsource Weight Loss explains why many of us unwittingly sabotage our weight loss due to the myriad of misinformation promoted by food advertising and the "weight loss world." Ed demonstrates how to achieve permanent weight loss and true wellness in modern day America by focusing on five key areas for success. He helps you customize your own weight loss plan, starting with self-awareness and how to first implement the easy steps. With this guide, you too can navigate your way through a successful weight loss journey and keep it off forever!

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Bouillianne, Ed

Altamont Augie

Title: Altamont Augie
Author: Richard Barager
Genre: History
Reviewer: Kathy Rodgers

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0983066108

A NATION'S HONOR...A GENERATION'S POLITICAL SOUL...
LOVE and WAR in the AGE of AQUARIUS
A startlingly vivid portrayal of one of the most colorful and turbulent periods in recent American history: the 1960s, as seen through the eyes of two ill-fated college lovers at odds over Vietnam. Their story and the story of their generation spill onto a tableau of some of the era's most iconic settings: the legendary battleground of Khe Sanh; a Midwestern campus riven by dissent; and Altamont Speedway, scene of the notorious rock festival profiled in the film Gimme Shelter. Let this richly satisfying tale transport you to a Sixties state of mind.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Barager, Richard

The Warrior Among Us

Title: The Warrior Among Us
Author: Dick Hrebik
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror
Reviewer: Jim Greenwald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1935766015

The Warrior Among Us is a science fiction, political novel about the future. After a nuclear war annihilates an entire civilization on the planet Sarnificus and the United States falls off the international stage when Congress becomes impotent after years of increased partisan politics, and is unable to function. The world becomes a battleground centered in the deserts of the Middle East. Finally, Deke, a U.S. Marine, takes up arms with another nation's army in an attempt to save the world from itself by the year 2025. Can he save Earth? Discover our destiny in this suspense filled novel.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Hrebik, Dick

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