Monday, May 12, 2014

Book Review: Combat and Other Shenanigans by Piers Platt


Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this ebook, free of charge, from Reading Addiction Blog Tours, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it


we love dad meme button

Since Dad is retired from the military (Navy and Air Force), I thought it appropriate to start off our 'We love Dad' meme this year, with this book!

(And yes, he's quick to add the Army jokes at this moment,
but I'll skip those for now- you can just imagine, LOL)



Synopsis:

War is hell…but sometimes it’s also funny as hell.


Combat and Other Shenanigans is Lieutenant Piers Platt’s firsthand account of his year as a cavalry platoon leader in Iraq. Wry, action-packed, and poignant, Combat and Other Shenanigans is the absurd-but-true story of the antics the world’s finest soldiers get up to when no one high-ranking is watching.



Check out an excerpt:

( I laughed myself silly on this one, 

as my coworkers had literally told some similar tales mere days before)



The American soldier is known for being resourceful and innovative, which is generally true, but is also a euphemism for being good at breaking the rules when necessary.  Every unit has individuals who are even more resourceful than most, and we were no exception.

Sergeant First Class Peterson was leading fuel convoy escorts later during our tour when one of his Humvees blew a tire.  As usual given our supply woes, he was totally out of spares.  He happened to be near a major support FOB (Field Operating Base) at the time, and after a brief search at the supply depot (who wouldn’t resupply him because all of their tires were ear-marked for other units already), he found a motor pool with four or five Humvees in pristine condition, each of which carried a spare.

Given how clean they were, the Humvees were clearly not used for missions outside the FOB – they were glorified golf carts that got washed weekly and never left the wire.  Peterson and his men were in the midst of stealing two of the spares when a Sergeant from the unit that owned the tires strolled into the motor pool.

“Woah, what are you guys doing?”

Peterson had to think fast.  “Hm?  Oh, I talked to your NCO inside and he said to take them.”

“Sergeant First Class Johnson?”

Peterson smiled.  “That’s the guy.”

“Oh, okay,” the soldier said.  “Lemme give you a hand"

Charlie Troop was similarly short on spare tires on another occasion, so they found a massive pile of them at their nearest support FOB.  Their Executive Officer, Dan Cho, argued for a while with the depot personnel, begging and pleading to get even a few of them released, to no avail – they were all reserved for other units who hadn’t shown up to get them yet.

Being a resourceful, adaptive individual, he thanked them and left.  Then he took his cargo truck to the opposite side of the depot, well out of sight of the depot offices, sent two scouts scrambling over the fence, and used his cargo truck’s crane to hoist the spare tires over the fence.


Review;
Subtitled, Tales of the Absurd from a Deployment to Iraq, this is a hilarious adventure memoir of the life and times of the modern Army (4th Cav tank division), and their exploits in Iraq. Having heard tales from co-workers and friends, I know that as improbable as it seems, this book tells the truth in a brutally honest way!  Platt does do a great job in explaining military terms, for the civilian readers. That's not to say I didn't laugh my way through most of the book! piers is a born story teller, and able to make the tedium of sitting in hot sand at a checkpoint for 36 hours funny. His crew had their share of scares and close calls, but their ingenuity in crisis is very inspiring. I finished the book in one sitting, it was so hilarious!

This is a great book for the military veteran to laugh along with and for civilians to learn from! We give it one of our highest ratings!


About the Author:

Piers Platt grew up in Boston, but spent most of his childhood in various boarding schools, including getting trained as a classical singer at a choir school for boys. He joined the Army in 2002, and spent four years on active duty, including a year-long deployment to Iraq in 2004 as a tank and scout platoon leader.

He now works as a marketing strategy consultant in New York city, when he's not spending time with his lovely wife and daughter. Follow him on Twitter for more: @piersplatt

2 comments:

  1. Hi Nicole, thanks for the kind review - glad you enjoyed the book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for stopping in Piers! Those friends I spoke of are now eagerly reading your book and laughing hysterically and shared experiences!

      Delete

Follow Bless Their Hearts Mom