Chris Kyle’s American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History is an incredibly compelling read about war and the military lifestyle. Kyle’s often said that his life was God, family, then country, but his continuous re-enlisting led to a permanent career in the military and less time with his family. In fact, he often found it hard and stressful to be in normal civilization instead of a war environment. Once he became a Navy Seal, his life quickly turned from typical American to a battle-harden warrior. Violence just became a part of life. Everything became about fight or flight.
Reading this book really put some people’s military life into perspective. If you train to fight day after day, you are going to fight. I was horrified by the nonchalant violence that occurred throughout the book, but at the same time I understood how this became ingrained into their lives. It was also easier to understand why so many veterans have post-traumatic stress disorder. That being said, this was a fascinating read. I enjoyed that it was not only from Kyle’s perspective but his wife’s. Both viewpoints give you a more complete look at life in the military and how it effects everyone. This is a read that will stay with you making you think about war and the culture behind it.
Join us on May 1st at 7 PM for our non-fiction book club where we will be discussing American Sniper in more detail. Everyone is welcome to attend.
I am still in love with Cassandra Clare’s Infernal Devices trilogy. Clockwork Princeis the second book in the series and things are really starting to get exciting. Charlotte’s authority and abilities are being questioned in regards to running the Institute, creating pressure for finding Mortmain and Nate. Tessa is still desperately trying to find out exactly what kind of supernatural creature she is, and now she finds herself fighting her attraction for Will and falling in love with Jem.
Clare has the best steampunk world. (Steampunk is a genre that focuses on the Victorian era and the craziness of inventions. The genre is typically a mix of fantasy and alternate history.) Her world is dark and the robotic automatons are cleverly depicted and frightening. She has such a gift for creating fabulous atmosphere in her novels. I am continuously being drawn back to her world. The characters are amazing. You can’t help but fall in love with all of them, including Will and his facetious comments. It is also fun to read about fictitious characters who are passionate about reading. I really like when Tessa and Will start debating about Dickens or other Victorian authors that they are currently reading. I have to say that my favorite part of her books are the Victorian and Romantic authors’ excerpts. I love reading Tennyson, Arnold, Coleridge, and many others at the start of the chapters. It really sets the mood and gets you ready for what is to come. If you are looking for a new series to read, this would be a great choice.
Deanne Stillman recently won the SPUR award for Best Western Non-Fiction Contemporary writer with her book , Desert Reckoning. If you would like to learn more about this please visit Western Writers of America.