Top positive review
Honest, unsensational and well written memoir of a Canadian's experiences as a Royal Marine.
on 28 December 2014
I suspect this will turn out to be only the first chapter of a life well lived. It takes a particular sort of person to travel thousands of miles to join the national armed forces of another nation, albeit one which has an affinity with his own country of Canada. That said, the name suggests a long journey by his fore fathers, from Norway perhaps, to the far west of a huge new country, where they have carved out a life and put down roots, and this is the kind of adventure tale which almost belongs to another era. The book is well written, by a clearly bright, articulate, tough and resolute man - who doesn't sugar coat it, but equally doesn't Rambo it up for the Walter Mitty crowd. Action is interpersed with the reality of soldiering - the difficulty of separation from loved ones, the realities of training, making yourself as comfortable as possible in a pretty grim situation, and backing your mates 100%. The description of earning his coveted green beret will be valuable to anyone thinking of joining, and ensure no-one turns up with false expectations. Having done his time - he left after 4 years, and returned to his home country, to start the next chapter of his life - in maritime security. That will make a good read too, when he gets around to it.
The book is occasionally critical of his interaction with the British army, but the anecdotes feel authentic, and the incident with the 66, which another reviewer has taken issue with, seems to me unlikely to be fabricated, given how unsensationalised the balance of the book is.
Recommended - a good read.