While on vacation, I picked up my husband’s copy of Lone Survivor. It isn’t my typical fluffy chick lit mystery, but I’m always a sucker for a true story. This is the eye-witness account of Marcus Luttrell, Navy SEAL, and the only surviving member of Operation Redwing — a mission to capture or kill a key al Qaeda leader in the wilds of Afghanistan in 2005.
I’m here to tell you, this story sucked me in and wouldn’t let go. I read it in two days and sat up the second night until well after midnight because I couldn’t go to bed until I finished it.
At first I was distracted by the coarse writing style. The book was co-authored by Patrick Robinson, but this is clearly the voice of Marcus Luttrell. I have to assume this was intentional, and as I continued to read, I grew to appreciate the raw realism of the writing. The political views of Luttrell come across loud and clear, and he doesn’t waste time with tact or political correctness. His distaste for “liberals” and the American media is blatant and unapologetic. At the beginning, I was a bit put-off, but as I read on, I grew to appreciate his point of view, or at least understand it.
The first half of the book is about the training Luttrell received as a Navy SEAL. This is something that has always interested me, but I have never taken the time to learn much about it. The training those guys go through defies description. You just have to read it.
I remember after reading about the first four weeks of training, I looked up and said to my husband, “How can Hell Week get any worse?” Well, it did. I’ve always held a great deal of respect for the men and women of our armed forces, but reading this book gave me a renewed admiration and appreciation for everything they do to maintain our freedom.
The second half of the book was about Luttrell’s active duty in Afghanistan. Soon after his deployment, he was assigned to Operation Redwing with three other Navy SEALs. The goal was to take out a very dangerous and elusive al Qaeda leader. This battle led to the largest loss of life in the history of the Navy SEALs.
Luttrell wrote this book as a tribute to the bravery and sacrifice of his teammates.