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The Mother of all Book Recommendation threads

Discuss the book-of-the-month with your fellow users.
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Lionheart
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Postby Lionheart Mon Jun 13, 2011 6:54 am

The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Edward Gibbon
- dismissive of the Eastern Roman Empire, but it defined history writing for more than a century

The Cambridge Medieval History vol 2 - Rise of the Saracens and the Foundation of the Western Empire - J.B. Bury (editor)
- Europe in the late first millenium with an emphasis on the historical impact of the Caliphate on European society
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Postby forcedcobra Mon Jun 13, 2011 12:30 pm

Queso wrote:The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Edward Gibbon
- dismissive of the Eastern Roman Empire, but it defined history writing for more than a century


If you have a Kindle you can pick up all six volumes for under a buck.

Not really Army, but two WWII books that are really impressive are: Neptune's Inferno - the US Navy at Guadalcanal by James Hornfischer and Shattered Sword - the Untold Story of the Battle of Midway by Jonathan Parshall.
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What are you reading RIGHT NOW?

Postby SAONS Fri Mar 13, 2015 8:50 am

Here's my attempt at resurrecting this thread. The battalion XO at my old unit was notorious for asking Officers and NCOs what they were reading and he'd catch you if you gave the same answer month after month. It's easy to talk about the same book (Once an Eagle) and quote it over and over again when we really haven't picked it up in months and years.

So what's on your bookshelf? Not the ones with a pristine spine and un-thumbed pages. I asking what is your go to, quasi-professional book that you pack for long field exercises, training center rotations, etc. The books you recommend to junior officers, NCOs, and Soldiers?
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Yeah

Postby Mktennis Fri Mar 13, 2015 9:00 am

The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced By War.

If a junior officer/NCO wants to know why the American military is the way it is, this book will go a long way towards explaining it. If that same Soldier wants to know why he's more than likely to continuously deploy, this book will go a long way towards explaining it. Finally, if he wants to know why the American people love him so much yet don't want to be him, well, you know where to look!
<div>I have never believed in depriving military service to a country man because he is [amongst other things] already unaccustomed to baths, ignorant of worldly delights, and simple in mind." ~Vegetius</div>
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Postby Lionheart Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:08 am

It's easy to talk about the same book (Once an Eagle) and quote it over and over again when we really haven't picked it up in months and years.
Once an Eagle is the (almost) most worthless piece of drivel to every call itself a book in the English language.

The worst of course is anything by Dan Zlotnik. But OaE comes close.
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Re: Yeah

Postby Lionheart Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:11 am

The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced By War.

If a junior officer/NCO wants to know why the American military is the way it is, this book will go a long way towards explaining it. If that same Soldier wants to know why he's more than likely to continuously deploy, this book will go a long way towards explaining it. Finally, if he wants to know why the American people love him so much yet don't want to be him, well, you know where to look!
I'll second this one and go so far as to recommend everything by Andrew Bacevich.

He is one of the most prescient and disregarded voices in the country.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_ ... Caps%2C358
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Postby tanksgt Fri Mar 13, 2015 11:09 am

Almost A Miracle: The American Victory in the War of Independence
A Leap in the Dark: The Struggle to Create the American Republic

Both of these were done by the same author, John Ferling. Both great reads on the beginnings of our country. Good read for younger leaders to give an idea of what our countrymen went through and the un-watered down version of historic events.

The Savage Wars Of Peace: Small Wars And The Rise Of American Power

I have read this one about four times. I liked it because it gave me a more realistic look at the use of our military throughout US history.
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Postby SonicAbuse Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:57 pm

Almost A Miracle: The American Victory in the War of Independence
A Leap in the Dark: The Struggle to Create the American Republic

Both of these were done by the same author, John Ferling. Both great reads on the beginnings of our country. Good read for younger leaders to give an idea of what our countrymen went through and the un-watered down version of historic events.
Funny you should recommend these; I just ordered both (along with a few other volumes) from Amazon last night.

If you haven't read it already Paul Revere's Ride may be of interest to you.
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Postby forcedcobra Fri Mar 13, 2015 1:01 pm

Robert Gates' memoir, DUTY was excellent and a great insight into decisions that affected many of us.
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skoob

Postby xok Sat Mar 14, 2015 2:32 pm

Just finished Black Hearts: One Platoon's Descent into Madness in Iraq's Triangle of Death, which was highly recommended by my previous BDE CDR. Wish I had read it when I was a 2LT as it does a good job at describing a lot of difficult leadership scenarios and a lot of Army jargon in layman's terms.

Now I'm about done with The Operators by Michael Hastings about the Rolling Stone article on GEN McChrystal. Also interesting, but not as good as Black Hearts.

I think Once an Eagle is best for use as a chock block.
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Postby tanksgt Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:55 pm

Almost A Miracle: The American Victory in the War of Independence
A Leap in the Dark: The Struggle to Create the American Republic

Both of these were done by the same author, John Ferling. Both great reads on the beginnings of our country. Good read for younger leaders to give an idea of what our countrymen went through and the un-watered down version of historic events.
Funny you should recommend these; I just ordered both (along with a few other volumes) from Amazon last night.

If you haven't read it already Paul Revere's Ride may be of interest to you.
I'll pick it up. I've been on a Revolutionary War Era kick lately (3-5 years).
"Discipline without direction is drudgery"
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Postby SAONS Wed Mar 18, 2015 7:10 am

We're wrapping up a three month BDE exercise this week- from that I'd highly recommend Fobbit as a hysterical and painfully spot on humorous take on staff life in Iraq.

But more professionally- Rick's The Generals. It's a 360 look on Army four star (and some Marine) Generals that served between now and WWII. While I wish that he'd go a little more in depth into the leadership styles of the modern leaders, it's a great read. The chapters about the crisis of ethics and downsizing post Vietnam is far to similar to some our headlines.

For new PLs I would recommend The Junior Officer's Reading Club. The author's ego gets in the way at some points but a great read on being a young leader during GWOT.

And seriously, burn Once an Eagle.
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Article

Postby Mktennis Tue Mar 24, 2015 9:02 am

This is an article and not a book, but it's rather excellent. Like, f'reals, amahzing.

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/nation ... 81b78cf5ea
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Postby pageiv Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:25 pm

I don't recognize any of these as being on Reading Rainbow.
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Re: Article

Postby dpar Wed Apr 08, 2015 4:26 am

This is an article and not a book, but it's rather excellent. Like, f'reals, amahzing.

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/nation ... 81b78cf5ea
Maybe it's just me but I found the one sentence equals one paragraph chunks of writing way too distracting. I couldn't even finish it.
Do not bother to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself. --William Faulkner
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Postby tanksgt Thu Apr 09, 2015 12:44 pm

Trying to work my way through "Why We Lost" by LTG (Ret) Dan Bolger. I was told that he really put it to GEN Petraeus but, I haven't seen it yet. It reads well but, only gives a rehash of the war at the BN Level; Different Ops, outcomes, the Sunni Awakening, etc.. I thought there would be more of a analysis (critique) of our strategy and decision making at higher levels. I'm hoping that will come later.
"Discipline without direction is drudgery"
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Postby tanksgt Thu Apr 09, 2015 12:45 pm

Trying to work my way through "Why We Lost" by LTG (Ret) Dan Bolger. I was told that he really put it to GEN Petraeus but, I haven't seen it yet. It reads well but, only gives a rehash of the war at the BN Level; Different Ops, outcomes, the Sunni Awakening, etc.. I thought there would be more of a analysis (critique) of our strategy and decision making at higher levels. I'm hoping that will come later.
"Discipline without direction is drudgery"

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