The official Sebastian Junger community
I recently finished WAR and it didn't take me long.
I picked up WAR thanks to Armstrong and Getty, a morning talk show here in SF who repeatedly mentioned the book for a variety of reasons. I typically read books about events that occurred during or prior to WWII. A lot of Paul Johnson, Ambrose, Kagan and Chernow.....this was my first venture, in a while, into a book that dealt with the immediate past and for the first time I felt like I could reach out and touch what I was reading. I could see it everyday. The soldiers in the book could be the same folk I pass on the street when I fetch a burrito or head to work. I have never passed a colonial officer in San Francisco, let alone a redcoat. WAR magnified, for me, my appreciation for our servicemen by a thousand.
I have touched the tires of buried armor at Normandy. I grew up miles from Valley Forge and learned the significance early on. I lived in New York during 9/11 and saw the ghost white faces of those covered in ash. But WAR made history and war even more personal for me.
A single word that could define my appreciation for WAR did not exist. It would be impossible and it would short sell the book itself. But the one thing I am is thankful for reading the book. Thanks for Mr. Junger and Mr. Hetherington's effort and mostly thankful for the our servicemen.
The plan was to wait to finish the book before I saw Restrepo. I was tempted a few times to read and watch in tandem, but I waited. I am glad I did. Watching Restrepo upon completion made Restrepo more impactful. I felt like I knew the soldiers before and then seeing and hearing them brought the book home for me. I hope people who have seen Restrepo and have not read the book find the time. You need the one with the other.