Synopses & Reviews
A powerhouse work of nonfiction, Generation Kill
expands on Evan Wright's acclaimed three-part series that appeared in Rolling Stone
during the summer of 2003. His narrative follows the twenty-three marines of First Recon who spearheaded the blitzkrieg on Iraq. This elite unit, nicknamed "First Suicide Battalion," searched out enemy fighters by racing ahead of American battle forces and literally driving into suspected ambush points.
Evan Wright lived on the front lines with this platoon from the opening hours of combat, to the fall of Baghdad, through the start of the guerrilla war. He was welcomed into their ranks, and from this bird's-eye perspective he tells the unsettling story of young men trained by their country to be ruthless killers. He chronicles the triumphs and horrors physical, moral, emotional, and spiritual that these marines endured while achieving victory in a war many questioned before it began.
Wright's book is a timely account of war; even more important, it is a timeless description of the human drama taking place on today's battlefields. Written with brutal honesty, raw intensity, and startling intimacy, Generation Kill is destined to become a classic and take its place in the canon of the most captivating and authentic works of war literature. Index.
"Far from the news media's lionization of the captured Pfc. Jessica Lynch or its vilification of enlisted grunts in the Abu Ghraib torture debacle, Mr. Wright's portrait is nuanced and grounded in details often overlooked in daily journalistic accounts." Sharon Waxman, The New York Times
"A truly compulsive read....Shockingly honest. Evan Wright delivers a provocative, personality-driven portrait of his experience last spring with 23 First Recon Marines in Iraq." Entertainment Weekly
"I have rarely read a more frightening book. What Wright describes goes so far beyond the obvious 'war is hell' platitude that it wil keep any thinking reader awake for many nights." Jeff Guinn, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Based on Evan Wright's National Magazine Award-winning story in Rolling Stone, this is the raw, firsthand account of the 2003 Iraq invasion that inspired the HBO(R) original mini-series.
Within hours of 9/11, America's war on terrorism fell to those like the twenty-three Marines of the First Recon Battalion, the first generation dispatched into open-ended combat since Vietnam. They were a new pop-culture breed of American warrior unrecognizable to their forebears--soldiers raised on hip hop, video games and The Real World. Cocky, brave, headstrong, wary and mostly unprepared for the physical, emotional and moral horrors ahead, the "First Suicide Battalion" would spearhead the blitzkrieg on Iraq, and fight against the hardest resistance Saddam had to offer.
Hailed as "one of the best books to come out of the Iraq war"(Financial Times), Generation Kill is the funny, frightening, and profane firsthand account of these remarkable men, of the personal toll of victory, and of the randomness, brutality and camaraderie of a new American War.
Wright's powerhouse work of nonfiction which expands on his acclaimed three-part series that appeared in Rolling Stone during the summer of 2003 follows the 23 marines of First Recon who spearheaded the blitzkrieg on Iraq.
Visit HBO’s Generation Kill website here.
The New York Times bestseller—"one of the best books to come out of the second Iraq war." (Financial Times) Within hours of 9/11, America's war on terrorism fell to those like the 23 Marines of the First Recon Battalion, the first generation dispatched into open-ed combat since Vietnam. They were a new breed of American warrior unrecognizable to their forebears-soldiers raised on hip hop, Internet porn, Marilyn Manson, video games and The Real World, a band of born-again Christians, dopers, Buddhists, and New Agers who gleaned their precepts from kung fu movies and Oprah Winfrey. Cocky, brave, headstrong, wary, and mostly unprepared for the physical, emotional, and moral horrors ahead, the "First Suicide Battalion" would spearhead the blitzkrieg on Iraq, and fight against the hardest resistance Saddam had to offer. Generation Kill is the funny, frightening, and profane firsthand account of these remarkable men, of the personal toll of victory, and of the randomness, brutality, and camaraderie of a new American war. Read Evan Wright's posts on the Penguin Blog.
About the Author
Evan Wright is the author of Generation Kill, now the basis of the HBO miniseries for which he served as co-writer.
Wright earned his degree in medieval and Renaissance studies from Vassar College, an education he soon put work at Hustler magazine, where he served as "Entertainment Editor." In the late 1990's he began writing feature articles for Rolling Stone.
At Rolling Stone Wright focused on youth subcultures, from radical environmentalists to skinheads to sorority girls. His work is characterized by immersion in his subjects' worlds, detailed reporting and dark humor.
After 9/ll he pitched his editor on the idea that since the US military was "basically another youth subculture," he ought to be writing about it. He has covered the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
He is the recipient of two National Magazine Awards, one for reporting on the war in Iraq in Rolling Stone and the other for a profile published in Vanity Fair.
Generation Kill received numerous awards, including the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize, the Los Angeles Times book award, a PEN USA literary prize and the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation's award for "Best History of the Marine Corps."
He is currently at work on two books for Putnam:
Hella Nation, a collection of essays and reporting to be published in the Spring of 2009
The Seed, a reported memoir of brainwashing to be published in the Summer of 2010.