An utterly incredible book. Krakauer is one of America's best investigative writers. This story deserves to be told and retold. Incompetence and coverup all around. I feel so sorry for Tillman's family and his significant other.
As stated in the title, this is the odyssey of Pat Tillman, from athletic boy through high school, college, NFL, and into the army as an enlisted ranger. I've always wondered about his decision to leave the NFL for the army after 9/11, trying to imagine what kind of person he would be, but I probably wouldn't have read this if it hadn't be recommended to me. I'm glad I did.
First of all, it ends out that Pat Tillman is a surprising and fascinating person, not just an NFL star. (I'll leave the details up to you future readers.) Secondly, the tale is very well told and researched. Maybe most importantly, I learned about the rise of bin-Laden and Al-Quaeda and about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. All this was done in a way that wasn't dry or overwhelming; the story of terrorism is told chronologically alongside the always interesting story of Pat Tillman and his family. Of course, if you're looking for a book with a happy ending, this isn't it.
I'm rating this 4.5, taking off a half point because I got rather bogged down with names involved in the cover-up of the friendly fire investigation.
Incidentally, I listened to most of this, but switched to reading when I got to Tillman's final mission in Afghanistan. I definitely recommend taking advantage of the maps in the book at that point, but the narrator was excellent.
Pat Tilman's story is very interesting and you really get a feal for him as a person, his personality and character. I was surprised to find that he had reservations about US involvment in the war in Iraq and the Bush administration. The author in several places refers to the book "Boots on the Ground" written by Pat's Mother - I plan to read ths one as well.
An amazing telling of Pat Tillman's tragic story made all the more moving because he kept a journal of very soulful observations on the Army and the problems in the Middle East.
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