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4.4 out of 5 stars
Seven Troop
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on 22 September 2008
After reading Bravo Two Zero and Immediate Action a long time ago as a young soldier, I still cannot bring myself to read a fiction book from Andy McNab; not because they might not be good but because of the first two books being non-fiction. However, as soon as I discovered that he had created a new book of his personal stories I broke my pledge of "no more war stories" and bought it.

The book does build upon Immediate Action but it has an underlying and consistent message, one that I unfortunately witnessed in some ex-Falkland paras. Without telling the lay of the book and thereby removing the enjoyment for other readers, what I will say is that the story follows a young trooper meeting "brothers in arms" and what can result from years at the hard edge. Like Andy's first two books; I read this one in under a week (I spend some time at airports!)

The message is simple; the reality of war is hell and those that return can suffer from physical and/or mental injury. Both types of wounds can be very deep and life threatening; the latter is extremely difficult to heal. The book concludes with open emotion and I take my hat (well, beret as an ex-para) to anyone who can put that onto paper.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on 15 September 2008
This book does much more than just take over from where Bravo Two Zero and Immediate Action left off. It traces Andy McNab's military career from the time he joined 7 Troop, SAS, to the time he left, but covers many other aspects of his subsequent life as and when they overlap with other members of the Troop. In many ways, this is as much their story as his, and McNab is man enough to give centre stage from time to time to giants like Frank Collins, Al Slater and Nish Bruce. Nor does he try to sweep bad news under the carpet; the events of 1998 when Dr Thomas Shanks gunned down his former girlfriend with an AK47 in a Leeds car park are given a full airing. This is a reflective, almost sad, book, but it's none the worse for that. The reality is starting to hit home about the time-bomb of PTSD, and McNab champions the cause of counselling, even for rough, tough SAS lads. This book might be harrowing, but it still carries all the McNab hallmarks of a brilliant sense of (dark) humour, and dialogue and action that crackles with authenticity. I loved it. I just hope the powers that be take heed of what men like McNab are saying.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 3 August 2009
I own McNab's non fiction books as well as Frank Collins book. This book included much of what has already been published. Having said that I enjoyed the book, which I found flowed well. In my opinion McNab has had time to reflect on his time in the regiment and how some of his mates actions and experiences effected their lives once they got out. It wasn't a book about being gong ho and describing jobs in detail. It was rather a book that tried to analyse and seek to understand the more psychology aspects of being in the SAS i.e. the need to belong, thinking yourself as a somebody with a special skill, only to come out and realise life is so much different in civvy street. As a Christian I was interested on how Frank Collins impacted McNab and those guys in his troop. I can see how McNab struggles with Christianity from what experience he has.

If you are looking for excitment and war stories I suggest you look elsewhere and read Bravo 2 zero or Immediate action. I find human behaviour interesting and having read McNab's other books felt this book added a new insights into the the men in the SAS rather than SAS itself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 22 July 2009
I would have to disagree with those that say this is just a re-hash of Bravo Two Zero or Immediate Action. Having read both several times this book brought a far more in depth look at the human relationships that develop in such a tight knit group and the personal tragedies that have resulted from what they see and go through. It is the first book I have read that has ever brought tears to my eyes, truly harrowing in places. Yes, it skims over operations covered previously in the other two books but with a different take and concentrates more on the people involved than the 'Boys Own' adventure stuff. It is also good to see McNab putting something back in by raising the issues of PTSD and education in the army. The main reason I've now logged onto Amazon is to buy Freefall and Baptism of Fire to get me through my holidays. A fantastic read that I'd recommend to anyone even if they don't usually read military non-fiction.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This is the first McNab book I have read and definately not the last.

The book covers him joining the SAS to when he leaves. Its a great book for people with or without a military background explaining a lot of the things.

The book covers his time in Ireland during the troubles and the start of the first Gulf War. Its a great insight of how the troops back then in Ireland coped on and off base.

Back at the HQ in Hereford it explains how the people first met in the SAS slowly retire and leave the SAS and how bonded they are still.

A really great book.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 12 November 2008
Like his other non-fictional books, Seven Troop is an excellent read. In my opinion, his best to date. McNab describes in vivid detail, from his own experience, and that of his "Brothers in Arms" the reality of fighting "at the sharp end", and the effect it has on those individuals once they are no longer exposed to those dangers. His unselfish accounts of Frank Collins, Al Slater and in particular, Nish Bruce and Thomas Franks, highlight the problems surrounding PTSD, and the need for those in a position to do so, to provide the help and counselling these guys so desperately need.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Ive just finished reading Seven troop and although it sounded quite like Bravo two zero, I found it to be a really excellent book.I ve read quite alot of Andy Mcnabs books, and between the fiction and non fiction, he gets my vote every time.....lets face it,the bloke has been there, done it and lives to tell the tale.........
I especially like the Boy soldier series.yeah, okay, so its meant to be for teenagers, but hey, who cares!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 29 January 2013
A superb insight in to the life of a special forces soldier. stretching from McNab's time in the Green Jackets patrolling the streets of Northern Ireland through to the war in Iraq and leading the infamous Bravo two zero patrol, this account gives us a taste of the strength and fortitude needed to achieve the sand coloured beret and the ultimate price that many pay both mentally and physically to keep us safe.
Gritty, realistic, and often humorous this account holds its own amongst the plethora of SAS literature available. If you liked Immediate Action and Bravo Two Zero then Seven Troop will not disappoint.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 4 March 2010
Tells the same stories as in the previous book (Immediate Action mainly) but with a different level of details and emotions. Repetitive at times, but mostly a good read. And better and better as you progress through the book.
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on 1 June 2014
After reading immediate action and bravo two zero I wondered on the need to read this book. On the whole I'm glad I did.
This book seems somehow more mature than either IA or B2Z, it may be that McNab has matured as a writer or I am now used to his writing style and infer more from the words on the page.
I like this book because it tells it how it is (or was). McNab doesn't try to glorify or even justify what he was part of or what he did during his career the events recounted are told in a matter of fact style which would have been refreshing in other military biographies.
Seven Troop is not a feel good work of embellished second hand accounts. McNab talks about personal feelings and opinions. His acknowledgement of his own good fortune to survive his first firefight and his feelings towards the Irish terrorists he planned and fought against are well articulated and point towards the objective nature of this work and my interpretation that McNab just wants to tell the story and refuses to pander to those who would like their military action a bit more "Hollywood"
Having said that this book is not perfect by any means.
McNab does occasionally forget that not everyone will know what an HK MP5 is or know what or where XMG is.
One thing that stood out is that IMHO the books greatest asset in also it's biggest problem. McNabs willingness to tell the story warts and all does have an effect on how the reader ends up feeling about McNab and his colleagues. For elite professional soldiers some of the actions are less than mature and I end up feeling a bit sorry for a few of the Troop which I'm sure was not the intention.

Overall I think you should read this book. It moves at a good pace and doesn't try to act like a recruitment leaflet for the army. Even if you aren't looking for a military biography this book also tells a good story with some great characters made even better by the knowledge that they exist and these events actually happened.
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