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Among You: The Extraordinary True Story of a Soldier Broken by War Paperback – 7 Nov 2013

4.6 out of 5 stars 96 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Mainstream Publishing (7 Nov. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1780576633
  • ISBN-13: 978-1780576633
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.5 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (96 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 356,743 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Jake Wood writes unflinchingly about his life, whether on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, the trading desks of Canary Wharf or the frenzied, hallucinatory landscape of sexual passion . . . A more pertinent story of our time it is hard to imagine" (John Irvin, director of Hamburger Hill)

"The most haunting and moving account of how battle scars your mind" (Daily Mail)

"Jake Wood tells his story with an expert eye for detail . . . intensely gripping and emotional" (The Scotsman)

"As a military historian, I have read thousands of first-hand accounts of war, in all its gore and glory, brutality and suffering. But there were tears in my eyes as I followed Wood’s story of his descent into the bleakness of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder" (Tony Rennell Daily Mail)

"Jake Wood is . . . a burning man who shapes sentences with a poet's heart and a fighter's rage . . . This one soldier's story is indeed extraordinary and a reminder that if you can write like Jake Wood, your life - whether lived in your head or in the world at large - will be far from ordinary" (The National)

Book Description

An extraordinary and very real account of the impact of modern combat

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Once I started reading this I could not put it down and to say that it is thought provoking just doesn`t cover it. I'm not able to put into words, a review that can do this book justice and I somehow feel that even thinking of it as a book is disrespectful to the real life behind it. Jake Wood, I not only salute you for the service you have given, but for the courage you have shown in writing and publishing this book. This is a book that everyone should read as we all need to know, recognise and acknowledge the sacrifices that are being made by our armed forces personnel.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Jake, that is by far the best book on the subject of war that I think I have ever read and I have read literally hundreds. A searing account, painful to read, powerful and above all brutally honest. I think it is your total and unflinching honesty which really makes the book stand out and I admire your courage in writing it. The Junior Officers Reading Club comes close,but I think yours is better. I also served on Herrick 6, with the Territorial Army, in an Infantry role. My tour was rough in parts, but not on the same scale as yours. Your observations and descriptions of the impossibility of ever really fitting properly back into civilian life again were incredibly well written and helped me on a personal level. TA (and all reserve forces) face a unique challenge regarding re-integration into society, and I don't mean a harder or easier challenge than the regs, just a different one, which I think you capture perfectly. I do not have PTSD, and I didn't loose any limbs, both of which I will be eternally grateful for. But, like everyone I served with, I am not the same as I was before Afghan and the blackness, as you so astutely describe it, is always there, and always has to be consciously repressed. On a personal level your book helped me hugely, at a time when perhaps the blackness was becoming difficult to manage. It made me feel less isolated, and I am certain that your book will help many veterans. Anger, rage, numbness,sitting at a desk and struggling to integrate the soldier and the civilian which form every TA or reservist are things which I, and I am certain many others can relate to. Finally, with regard to your quest to arm Infantry drivers with pistols - top notch.Read more ›
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Format: Kindle Edition
Xland,

I couldn't disagree with your review more. A couple of points:

1. By your own admission you have not read the book in full, just excepts. If you had you would know that the subject matter of the book and understand the context.
2. Warts and all, it's all true. I'm not sure how you describe him as a fantasist as you barely knew him and didn't work with him at all on Herrick 6.
3. Jake was not involved in the Mortar incident. That was another soldier deployed in Now Zad where he didn't go all tour.

Among You does not take anything away from the FSTs of 19 Reg and the fantastic job they all did during an extremely tough tour. Jake describes his experiences candidly and truthfully and their effect on him in theatre and at him on his return.

It's a fantastic book and it would be more appropriate if you read the whole thing before commenting.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am a former Army wife and my ex husband suffered from PTSD. I never fully understood the demons or pain that lingered deep in his mind. The anger, frustration and often tears that became a regular part of our lives. The mere sound of a car back firing would have him diving to the floor. The sleepless nights, horrific nightmares. But worse still I could not know what lay deep inside. What was causing my husband to be that changed man, and what would eventually destroy our marriage. The hell that was Northern Ireland, Bosnia and Iraq all rolled into one, set the seal on a mind that took years to begin to find semblance of normality. I have had many friends go and are in Afghanistan now. Ignorance can be bliss, but the odd programmes like the series by Ross Kemp opened a world I never knew. I know what it's like to lose a friend there, and it was at the same time as Jake was there. I have had many many nights going through what his last moments were like and the thoughts are soul destroying, haunting. I imagine his broken body laying in the ditch and the feeling of helplessness his fellow soldiers must have felt. I go through the timeline of death and burial. Of me when i sit by his grave and wander if it is real.,life takes on a new meaning. I can't imagine what our soldiers go through, and I watch when we see them returning home, the signs that hide behind their eyes. I am a nurse and I can remember many patients whose deaths linger my mind. The sights and smells you never can quite forget. They never truely go away but the mind is an incredible tool. Just like our physical wounds heal, yes they may leave a scar and sometimes you still experience pain, but it lessons over time and makes way for brighter things.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An honest heartfelt and no holds barred book of the effect of recent conflicts on a soldier. The first book i have read written by a member of the ta and highights the plight of the reservists who serve along side the regulars and face the unique challenges of trying to fit back into the 9 to 5 grind of civilian life when they return. Well worth a read and will open your eyes to exactly what we expect our troops serving overseas to go through on a daily basis, the hard ships they endure so we can all sleep safe in our beds and worry about nothing more than the latest reality TV scandle.
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