Top positive review
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A TRUE Account of SB Life
on 12 December 2010
I received this book on Friday lunch time and finished early Saturday. A reason for buying was seeing Duncan's picture and remembering him from my time in the Marines, I served 77 to 84.
This is one of the best factual accounts of SF work I have ever read and due to my own life and knowledge of those who contributed to the book, know it is at no point a work of fiction. The accounts are accurate and not just told by Duncan as many other former members of the SBS helped, as he states in the book. This has to be one of the best books written by a SF operative.
The reviews are mainly positive with a couple who question the author, to that end they are wrong as the events are true and factual and in many cases are told in a way that must have been close to the mark as far as the MOD were concerned. One critique questioned some of the diving detail to which I would say you are a fool to compare sports diving to anything to do with the diving SB undertake and in the 70's and 80's the trials were still very experimental and watching Seal teams when they came to Poole was nothing more than farcical when confronted by the dark water dives and equipment.
Some of the accounts have brought a tear as some of the people described were people I knew and respected very highly.
Do pictures make a book? NO not in this case as they would just be the same as any you find on the Internet due to the OSA and in many cases would not tie in with the book. Should he have used dates? again NO as anyone worth his salt can work out from the events rough dates after all the Falkland took place over a few months in 1982 so come on people use your brains.
SBS were quite often moved back to Commando units especially NCO's who could prove invaluable in operations within units by introducing their knowledge and professionalism as well as inspiration to others. Yes Duncan was part of the test to take recruits straight through to SBS and he must be glad of that opportunity and to have gone all the way. The training in SBS is demanding physically but more mentally as they must be able to work even when their body has almost given up and having seen the training first hand can only appreciate anyone who succeeds.
The rivalry between SBS and SAS is understandable, but in the 70's and 80's the SAS had more former Royal Marines than Army and by former I mean the only way to join SAS was to leave the Royal Marines due to the Navy tie. Rivalry is always going to be part of Forces life.
If you want a good read that is true to fact, just with the compromise of exactly how to taken away, then this book has to be one you don't miss and if you served as an RM then this will make sense and open your eyes to the work of the sneeky beeky branch. A really good read that pulls no punches and shows that people can sometimes do the unthinkable and the remarkable.