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Brian Castner served three tours of duty in the Middle East, two of them as the commander of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit in Iraq. Days and nights he and his team - his brothers - would venture forth in heavily armed convoys from their Forward Operating Base to engage in the nerve-racking yet strangely exhilarating work of either disarming the deadly improvised explosive devices that had been discovered, or picking up the pieces when the alert came too late. They relied on an army of remote-controlled cameras and robots, but if that technology failed, a technician would have to don the eighty-pound Kevlar suit, take the Long Walk up to the bomb, and disarm it by hand. This lethal game of cat and mouse was, and continues to be, the real war within America's wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
But The Long Walk is not just about battle itself. It is also an unflinching portrayal of the toll war exacts on the men and women who are fighting it. When Castner returned home to his wife and family, he began a struggle with a no less insidious foe, an unshakable feeling of fear and confusion and survivor's guilt that he terms The Crazy. His thrilling, heartbreaking, stunningly honest book immerses the reader in two harrowing and simultaneous realities: the terror and excitement and camaraderie of combat, and the lonely battle against the enemy within - the haunting memories that will not fade, the survival instincts that will not switch off. After enduring what he has endured, can there ever again be such a thing as "normal"? The Long Walk will hook you from the very first sentence, and it will stay with you long after its final gripping page has been turned.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By J. Masters on 08-08-12
Heart wrenching and a compelling read
Would you consider the audio edition of The Long Walk to be better than the print version?
Yes -- read by the author and with feeling so better than reading the book
What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?
The emotion of the narrator/author made this true story much more real than just reading the book.
What about Brian Castner’s performance did you like?
He was very articulate and his emotion could be felt as he read his book.
If you could give The Long Walk a new subtitle, what would it be?
A story we all need to hear !!
Any additional comments?
The author lives in my general community and I know someone who is familiar with his family. I can only imagine what his entire family and friends have been through. Brian is one of thousands of soldiers who have and are going through similar experiences and it breaks my heart that we, as a society, are so unaware.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
By Amazon Customer on 10-08-12
I never thought about what these soldiers have to deal with. Some of the book was so graphic I had to walk away from it for a few days. But I had to come back. Wars have probably always screwed up the minds of the people who fought them but after reading this I really don't know how some of them continue with their lives. I felt for him every moment. Be prepared though. It is disturbing.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful