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Hard Corps: from Thug Zero to Marine Hero

4.03  ·  Rating Details  ·  80 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
At the age of seventeen, Marco Martinez was a thug—a gun-toting, car-stealing gang member.
At the age of twenty-two, he was a hero—the recipient of the Navy Cross, the second-highest honor a U.S. Marine can receive, for extraordinary heroism under fire in the Iraq War. Hard Corps tells the story of his incredible transformation and of his experiences on the front lines of
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published September 25th 2007 by Crown Forum (first published January 1st 2007)
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Apr 07, 2008 Janet rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: American Patriots
A well-titled book, it begins with a warning:”If profanity offends you, consider yourself warned. A Marine memoir without profanity is like a rifle without ammo. This book is locked and loaded.” Indeed. Written with a touch of humor and some graphic description, it is the honest, raw, story of a youth’s transition from gangsta style thug to authentic Marine Hero. And while I cannot relate at all to the profanity, the slang, the music, or the street life chosen by this young man, I am moved by th ...more
You have to admire a guy who writes his life story and he's only 24. He certainly is a hero. I have to admire his courage not only on the battlefield but also in telling us about his life with all its blemishes. You see the good, bad, and the ugly in this young man's life. It's a heartfelt tale filled with wisdom, immaturity, and some ranting. The only aspect of this book that disturbed me was the hazing. Hazing is not good leadership. It's hard to believe the son of an Army Ranger could get off ...more
Feb 23, 2014 Becky rated it it was amazing
After being married to one 2/5 Marine who lost his battle with PTSD and am now in a relationship with another one, this book was very hard to read. The two men I have loved most in my life were in these same battles. It is a well written book about a man just doing his job and becoming a hero in the process. It shows the discipline of the Marine Corps and how it can change a person's life for the better.
Feb 16, 2009 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anybody who wants to read a real account of the war instead of the liberal media bullshit.
Recommended to Elizabeth by: Adam
This is one of the most accurate accounts of the USMC and the war that I've read. My husband is a former USMC tanker/OIF Vet so a lot of this really hit home for me and was relateable. If you don't like profanity then this isn't for you. There is no sugar-coating of anything in this book which makes it so great.

Martinez's story is really inspiring, but he's humble as hell like most of the Marine's I've ever met.
May 22, 2008 Patricia rated it really liked it
A cool book that is much better than Jarhead (which, by the way, this author hates). While this book is a quick read, it makes you think about the life of soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines in a hole new light. I recommend this book to anyone who has not been in the military and/or does not understand why young men are signing up to go to war.
Micah Rasmussen
Feb 02, 2013 Micah Rasmussen rated it it was amazing
(239 pages)
An inspiring book that shows the life of a modern day warrior. The book follows a young man who makes the transformation of a lifetime. There has been so much war in the world as of today and it would bring the outsider into the lives and psyche of Marines and Soldiers.. something not many know.
Nov 21, 2010 Tyson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military, bio
A real heart-warming story of a urban kid who went from a negative lifestyle to someone who turned himself around and made a positive difference for himself and those he served alongside. A story of courage and commitment that younger kids might be able to identify with and with luck emulate. A true hero.
Michael Richards
Sep 05, 2012 Michael Richards marked it as to-read
Read first 3 chapters. Was decent but definately a hard core Marine. Hes going to be 70 and still be a bulldog. I did not get a chance to read when he was in combat. Ill have to pick back up another time.
Tim Severance
Feb 14, 2013 Tim Severance rated it it was amazing
Great book from start to finish about a young punk gangster making the decision to be a man and do something right with his life.
Phillip Grendzinski
Love the book, highly recommend as long as you aren't easily offended by vulger language and violence
Jun 06, 2008 Amy rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
The most detailed look behind the Corps, and what this individual Marine did to become "one of the few!"
Barbara Justiniano
Jun 25, 2009 Barbara Justiniano rated it really liked it
This book was very good and gave me a different insight in to what the troops are going through in Iraq.
Kevin Henderson
Nov 06, 2010 Kevin Henderson rated it liked it
Decent story, but not the most interesting read in the world.
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