I started reading Michael Yon’s blog last year while he was embedded with soldiers in Iraq and it was some of the best writing about the war there I have found. He is former US Special Forces and was able to keep up with the soldiers as they went on various missions in Mosul and around the country. This post is good example of that writing: Gates of Fire. Since then, he’s been back in the US, then off to Afghanistan and elsewhere.
Back in 1999, he wrote a book: Danger Close. You can find it on Amazon but they don’t stock it anymore so you might as well get it from his site (the previous link). He posted the first chapter on his site recently, and after reading it I had to get the book. It begins just after Michael has completed his special forces training and is away at a beach resort area with a buddy relaxing for a few days. They’re in a bar one evening and there’s a fight and the cops arrive, and there’s some legal trouble for Michael. The chapter ends with a cliff-hanger and I eagerly awaited the book’s arrival.
I found the book very entertaining. Michael Yon is an excellent story-teller and he has plenty of stories to tell. I was surprised by the book, I suppose, because there was a lot more about his childhood than I thought, and nothing of actual combat missions. After reading articles such as “Gates of Fire” mentioned above, I expected more along those lines. I can’t say I’m disappointed, though, as the book was hard to put down. About mid-page at this link begins Felony Self-Defense, another chapter in the book about a childhood experience he had in Florida with a rather large alligator.
There is also captivating narratives about Basic Training and Special Forces training, interesting insights into the workings of our legal system from an innocent man’s point of view, as well as a deep look into an often-hard but sometimes fun-sounding childhood. I think he’s the only person I know of that did more stuff that should have gotten him killed than the Taylor boys. ;-)
I highly recommend the book.