Book Review: Service: A Navy SEAL at War

In Service, Marcus Luttrell takes the reader past the events of Operation Redwing and describes the next few years of his career after being the sole survivor of that fateful mission. I had a feeling that I would enjoy this book after reading the first paragraph of the preface:

“I’ve written this book to honor the skill, courage, and sacrifice of the exceptional people I know who serve not only in the SEAL teams but in all the other service branches who I’ve served with along the way. Really this is a book for all who serve. It’s for anyone who wears the uniform; who, when the shooting starts, move toward the gunfire instead of away from it. It’s for the brave breed of individuals, the warfighters, who put everything on the line because it is expected of them, because they stand up for the United States and sometimes die for the privilege.”

This book describes the events following Luttrell’s rescue after Operation Redwing. It discusses some of his rehabilitation as well as his incorporation back into the SEAL teams. Once it’s time to deploy, he suits up just like everyone else and heads back to the war.

He takes us through the fast paced action of the war in Ramadi, Iraq as he and his team attempt to take control of the city. Parts of the story are action packed, and other parts are heart-breaking, but it’s never boring. It gives you a first-hand view of what war looks like.

Personally, I think the true value of this book is the way it depicts Navy SEALs. It gives you a unique perspective into the training and fighting that they go through. More importantly, you get to see the mindset that it takes to be a SEAL. Once you read about the sacrifice and pain that they go through, it gives you a whole new appreciation for what they do. It becomes clear early on in this book that it takes a special breed to wear the trident on their chest.

If you love reading about Navy SEALs, or if you just want to see what real heroes look like, you should definitely pick up this book. It’s a fairly quick read, but it will certainly leave an impression.

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