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Copperfish

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  • 11
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  • 26
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How do you know there is a pilot in the room?

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-12-19

Because the pilot will work it into conversation as many times as possible before he leaves.

If you are interested in stories where the aircraft was used then try another book.
This unfortunately is a marvellous collection of anecdotes of self importance. It is written in a very formal manner with alot of recounting of names of who was in charge at this date and how very fortunate one was when they got to fly with a senior officer.
Not alot of substance to the story at all. There were only a handful of interesting story line that took my fancy. There were a few blatant lies written as anecdotal fact.
Overall I was very disappointed that the interviews were solely focused on the pilots with no side stories from ground crew or civilians or journalists or anybody else that could add flesh to the bare bones in this book.
This is my second Tony Blackman book, the other being Nimrod rise and fall. which was quite dry but interesting. This one however was an exercise in determination.

Amazingly put together.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 21-08-19

One of the finest stories of the Vietnam tragedy. A very humanity based unbiased account.
As with all Max Hastings books I found this to be very well researched from all sides of the conflict. I especially loved the fact that it was not written as an American war. This account is Vietnams story from the origins of the troubled nation through colonialism, independence, division, allied involvement alongside the USA and finally the outcome right up to today.

1 person found this helpful

Excellent story retold better than the original.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-06-19

The story re-tells the Black Hawk Down story. This is obviously done many years later and with more reference to source material than the Bowden book. This books blends analysis and story beautifully. Many references are made to interviews with personnel and mentions the bigger intelligence activities around the event.
Finally it talks about the big screen inaccuracies and myths.
My advice would be to read Black Hawk Down, watch the movie including the behind the scenes, watch the multiple documentaries, do a little bit of online browsing then read this book to round it all off nicely.
This books translates well to an audiobook however I recommend a little bit of research first including maps and a brief description of the key points of the day.

interesting counter insurgency theory

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-05-19

Interesting topic.

Draws on many of the similar comparisons of the COIN of Malaya vs Vietnam but fails to highlight the massive differences such as physical geography the historical links of the parties involved in each conflict.
This is a prime example of displaying statistics that suit your end goal.

Overall the narrator was very clear and performed well. The story flowed well except for the statistics page where it would be better to physically see rather than to listen to them.

How very American

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-05-19

Overall a very good account of how special forces soldiers interact with local forces to achieve a goal. For those interested in the military diplomatic psychological of soldiering it is a good account of obviousness learned by American forces.

The overall story was interesting with Americans learning how small wars are fought without a large supply train. I found it very interesting that the book at times stressed the fact that the Afghans did a lot of the fighting rather than claiming all the valour for the US troops.
The narrator was good though the hoarse throatiness during stressful times in the story made my eyes roll.


In the end it draws a very good contrast to the beginning of the Afghanistan campaign as opposed to the Iraq campaign.

Overall worth a read or listen.

Easy listening and great stories.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 16-02-19

Very well researched with great personal stories from the point of view of each story teller.
Admittedly, in my minds eye I kept visualising PBR's in the stories rather than swifts.
I recommend having a quick research of swift boats and maps before listening just to help sent the scene.
Because it's an audio book it does lack the visual cues of the photos and maps/diagrams required for a story like this. However it was still outstanding.
At no point did I feel any gun ho moments which publishers like to force into some books.
This is pure reminiscences. Humorous, tragic, happiness, sadness, emotional numbness, excitement and boredom.
Truly a great testament to the men's memories.

insightful and a good listen.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-02-19

enjoyed the book the narrative was very good and made it easy to listen to.

8 people found this helpful

Military story cliché to the max ends with PTSD.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-01-19

Performed by the author.
I had this book highly recommended to me but was sorely disappointed.

Cliché 1: Bitter at the Army and politics of the war.
Cliché 2: Educated priveleged boy seeks adventure to become a man.
Cliché 3: Loves his hard working boys.

The author received an education before enlisting had every opportunity to research the military before he joined. Yet he joins, we go through the story of his training and operations and roles to the point he quits the Army to the predictable end of a discussion of PTSD.

His use of prose and his explicit and elaborate descriptions of thoughts sights sounds and experiences are second to none. For that I applaud him.

However the story itself was just so predictable to anyone who has served in or even read a book about the military and warfare. I finished with the hope of the story somehow getting better with some interesting anecdotes but found it quite boring overall.
The authors performance at reading his own story was reminiscent of a petulant upper class teenager.

couldn't finish it

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-11-18

pretty awful narrator.
could not get into the story much to my disappointment as it was so highly recommended. maybe suitable for an older generation of reader by the sounds of it

Never quite reaches climax.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 29-07-18

Quite well performed by the Narrator.
The story was very well researched but somewhat lacking in something, couldn't put my finger on it though felt the actual climactic point passed quickly and without any real drama. Then it trailed off to talk about the Squadron history and the Vulcan force overall. Quite an unravelled finish I thought.