Sebastian Junger


"Over fifteen months, Sebastian Junger followed a single platoon based at a remote Afghan outpost. His objective: to convey what soldiers experience- what war actually feels like. In this book he describes things that few civilians will ever go through: the numbing anticipation of battle, the automatic risks soldiers take during combat protecting their bothers, and the adrenaline-fueled confusion of being ambushed."
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This is the author, Sebastian Junger.

Author's Purpose

The author's purpose in writing this book is to inform the reader. The author talks about the war in Afghanistan and what it feels like to be in a firefight with the enemy. He also includes what the whole experience can do to a person after their tour on duty. There can be both negative and positive effects on a person who sees combat in war. The question is, are you willing to risk your body? How about your sanity?

"...O'Byrne gets home safely, but civilian life goes even worse than garrison life. Months later, i get a note from him explaining that he wants to go back into the Army. 'It's as if I'm self-destructive, trying to find the hardest thing possible to make me feel accomplished,'...'A lot of people tell me I could be anything i want to be. If that's true, why can't I be a fucking civilian and lead a normal fucking life? Probably 'cause I don't want to."


I gave this book a rating of 3 out of 5, because the book had many passages that describe the how the soldiers felt. On the other hand, the Day-to-Day things that the soldiers did got repetitive. I'd recomend this book to anyone, man or woman, who is thinking about joining the US army.

"Incisive...absorbing and original...Junger captures many things a lesser writer might miss."- New York Times Book Review


A. Changing of mind

B. Positive changes

C. Money

Passage #1

"Each Javelin round costs $80,000, and the idea that it's fired by a guy who doesn't make that in a year at a guy who doesn't make that in a lifetime is somehow so outrageous it almost makes the war seem winnable." (pg 150)
Javelin firing

Issue in the book

There may be more than one issue, but the one i decided to chose to focus on is how war can damage a soldiers psychosis.

Selection From Book

Chapter title: Fear

This chapter talks about the adrenaline rush that's produced during a firefight (close combat shooting with the enemy). It also includes how the pilots and the radar intercept officer (who sat directly behind the pilot) stress levels differed from one another. It really caught my attention when they talked about this because the way the author described these feelings seemed unreal.

Passage #2

"'There's nothing like it in the world'...'If it's negative twenty degrees outside, you're sweating. If it's a hundred and twenty, you're cold as shit. Ice cold. It's an adrenaline rush like you can't imagine.'" (pg 33)