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The Finishing School: Earning the Navy SEAL Trident

4.11  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,252 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews
In America's new war, the first guns in the fight are special operations forces, including the Navy SEALs, specially trained warriors who operate with precision, swiftness, and lethal force. In the constantly shifting war on terror, SEAL units--small
in number, flexible, stealthy, and efficient--are more vital than ever to America’s security as they take the battle to an e
ebook, 304 pages
Published February 4th 2009 by Three Rivers Press (first published 2004)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,603)
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Aug 24, 2010 Kurt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the followup to "The Warrior Elite" which is a great description of the training of Navy SEALs. What I love about this book is the sections on leadership and the description of the attitudes of the officers and the people who train them. The author was a very early Navy SEAL and he brings a lot of wisdom and clarity to the narrative. This is not a blood and guts, "kill 'em all" book, or a rah-rah book, it's a description of the depth of training required to create these guys and what lea ...more
Sandra Simmons
Aug 29, 2014 Sandra Simmons rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fellow author here on Goodreads Chris Bent who is a former Navy SEAL gave me a copy of this book. Because I am a military brat, and support out troops I was very interested in reading it, but hoping it was not going to be too technical so I'd have to spend hours looking up the definitions of terms.

I was not disappointed. Not only is it a fairly easy read, it is a fascinating description of what the SEALs go through to become a SEAL and qualify to earn the Trident, and how they continue to trai
Jeffrey Belcher
Jul 22, 2013 Jeffrey Belcher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: listened-to
We are all very well aware of the superior elite band of warriors of the Navy SEALs, but most don’t know about their training other than the highly glorified “Hell Week.” Movies such as Navy SEALs and GI Jane have risen to show a hyped up Hollywood version of such training, however in The Finishing School, we follow Dick Couch, former Navy SEAL himself, through the modern day training of America’s top Special Warfare professional.
Couch picks up where he leaves off with The Warrior Elite: The For
Riley Holzman
Jun 12, 2014 Riley Holzman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This great book that describes the pain and hardship these men go through just to face more pain and hard ship in the next step of their training. SEALs are some the United States most diversely talented and greatest soldiers we have. If you ever thought about taking this challenge yourself it will make you rethink that a little bit.
Couch follows these men all the way through their training and takes you through in such detail you understand that these men are truly doing this for more than the
Charles Franklin
I picked this book for my "22 Until None" Reading List because I had previously read Dick Couch's book "The Warrior Elite" and enjoyed the personal insight and perspective from the former Navy Seal Commander and best-selling author. Everyone is so focused on BUD/S, but I wondered, "What happens afterward?"

This book isn't the answer.

While it isn't a straightforward "This is step 1, This is step 2" kind of book, "The FInishing School" opened my eyes to the HUGE amount of training and organization
Cristy Rey
I enjoyed this book. It's the necessary sequel to The Warrior Elite, Couch's nonfiction account of BUD/S SEAL training and, as such, answers a lot of the logical questions consequential with the former book: What happens after a SEAL-wannabe "passes" BUD/S? What does a SEAL's operational duty actually entail? What are the SEAL teams like? Why are there SEAL teams? What is a SEAL's career - enlisted or officer? And, in some way, what is the life of a SEAL like during war-time, i.e. right now? Tha ...more
Mar 10, 2013 Melanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
This book is a bit more technical than I expected, nevertheless, it's a good one. If you had any questions regarding what the Advanced SEAL training is like, then this is what you are looking for. It relates technical aspects of the Advanced SEAL training, weapons used, the kind of situation the students have to put up with, what are the instructors advices etc. I was actually hoping this book was going to be a little bit more "hands on". I mean, not so focused on the tech aspects, but in the st ...more
Aug 04, 2012 Chris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Captain Couch (USN retired) had full access to several SEAL classes as they completed every step of training that the Navy requires for a SEAL to earn the Trident and then (after even more training) become a member of an operational SEAL platoon that is fully prepared to deploy into potential combat zones. As a Marine Veteran, I really enjoyed reading this book! It begins with a review of BUD/S training (the subject of a previous book by Mr. Couch), and continues to detail SEAL Qualification Tra ...more
Robert Chapman
Mar 03, 2015 Robert Chapman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, military
Excellence and peak performance are some of my favorite areas of study, so a book about Navy SEAL training was a natural fit for my library.

Everybody knows that SEALs are the best and that the depth and difficulty of their training is the stuff of legend. I truly had no idea just how in-depth and detailed the training was until I read this book.

The author does a wonderful job of chronicling the training from BUDS all the way through to mission prep and beyond. After reading this book my respect
Diana H.
Nov 15, 2013 Diana H. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I gave this book 5 stars for the simple reason that it deserves that kind of recognition. It is laid out is a logical way, the content while intense and perhaps difficult to understand it made clear by the author, and the reason for the advanced training is explained.

The men and women who make up and support the SEAL teams are a special bunch of people. Not everyone has the capability, drive, and desire to purposefully put themselves in harm’s way, but these people do; and they do it on a regula
Chris Ross
I listened to the audio book and really liked it. The narrator was very good and spoke very authoritatively which is what I expect from a book on this subject. Dick Couch, as a former Navy SEAL, has unprecedented access to the teams and provides great detail.

This book is very different from most other books about the Navy SEALs in that it goes beyond BUDS training and Hell Week to The Finishing School or Schools I would say to give the reader a much better picture of what is required after Hell
Jan 02, 2015 T.M. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this book some years ago and I loved it. This was more in depth about the training that they undergo to earn such a prestigious title. A must read for anyone thinking about this line of work. I'll probably read it again later. A serious must read for those that like Naval non-fiction.
Scott Cunningham
Mar 23, 2016 Scott Cunningham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book to help put into perspective Couch's book on Special Forces Training "Chosen Soldier". I found this book to be just as insightful into special operations training, although I did find that the progression of training was a bit harder to follow.
Andrew Osborne
Aug 12, 2016 Andrew Osborne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved the detail & inside scoop of these amazing warriors. I was inspired to make my daily efforts in life more excellent & to push myself & my expectations farther in the tone of SEAL can do attitude. Two thumbs up!!!
ติ่ง สมศักดิ์
A Must Read.

Duck Couch has written in an easy to read yet comprised most detailed matter for readers to know how important the SEAL work and their sacrifice. They are the great warrior in the world.
Noah W
Sep 21, 2013 Noah W rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
When it comes to learning about Navy SEAL's look no further than Dick Couch. I read his previous book The Warrior Elite which chronicled SEAL Class 228's journey through BUD/S Phases 1 though 3.

This book goes through SEAL Qualification Training (SQT) that comprises rest of the training pipeline required to become a full-fledged SEAL. Most SEAL books focus on BUD/S and "Hell Week" and so it was refreshing to learn more about the advanced training.

Topics include: Officer leadership training, hand-
Paul Raimondi
Not totally what I was expecting. Seemed to get sidetracked a lot, not very much detail on training (though I am aware that complete disclosure is not possible.) Good writing, just not my style.
Jun 12, 2012 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall, well written. A bit more technical than I wanted and with less information about how Seals are actually trained, but gave a good overview of the 18 months leading up to deployment. Covers every little school and course that a Seal might go through. Author was a Seal in the early days and this seems like his way of keeping in touch with the community. Best for those wishing to geek out on special forces.
Oct 01, 2011 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military
Dick Couch did another great job on another Navy SEAL book. The focus of this book was to look at what BUD/S graduates had to do in order to obtain their Trident. This book had a lot more information than I thought it would have in it. If you have ever been interested in just what it takes to become a NAVY Seal and all of the training they have to complete, then this is a must read for you.
Tim Gillen
Nov 27, 2013 Tim Gillen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although a very procedural narrative, and written like a documentary, I did find this book engaging, and gave me a strong appreciate for the extent to which our Special Forces train, and the selection process that they go through to even earn the title.

Recommended reading through Wasdin's book: Seal Team SIx.

I listened to the audiobook version read by Arthur Morey.

Omnipotent Dystopian Now
The Finishing School picks up where The Warrior Elite leaves off, albeit with a different group of men. This book covers SQT and cold weather training and offers insight into weapons and close quarters combat training unique to the SEAL teams. It's well written and makes the reader feel like they're part of the class as it moves through the different training evolutions.
Oct 08, 2011 Bryan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although tiresome at times, what with the tiresome "warrior elite" mantra repeated ad nauseum, this book did lend an interesting perspective on the training of SEALs that you do not normally see or hear about. You are given an intimate look at not just how much pain is involved in becoming a SEAL, but also how much preparation, instruction, and training.
Nov 11, 2011 Monte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent, in depth account of what it takes to become and live as Navy SEALs. The only drawback for me was the occasional organizational/administrative details involved with Naval Special Warfare Command- my eyes kind of glazed over during those parts. Apart from that, Mr. Couch did a fantastic job! I will definitely be reading more of his books.
Jan 18, 2010 Tj rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting book on a look at Navy SEAL training, done by an ex-SEAL. The tone of the book is very type A, but it had to be expected with a person who could be a Navy SEAL.
If you want to read about the training a SEAL goes through it is a great book, just a little to "I am man, hear me roar" type of feeling for me.
Jul 09, 2011 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i think the author wrote this book better than The Warrior Elite. in The Warrior Elite, he sort of expected you to have some understanding of SEAL training before reading the book, which i didn't have, so yeah. in this book he actually described like what the things were so that the reader could understand it better.
Darren Sapp
Apr 02, 2013 Darren Sapp rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Everything you ever wanted to know about Navy Seal training. For those that have watched the Discovery Channel special on BUD/S training, this book details what happens the next eighteen months.
Hugh Vail
Nov 29, 2008 Hugh Vail rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the sequel, if you will, to The Warrior Elite. This is the detail and information about the second phase of SEAL training, those who have surpassed BUDS
Feb 11, 2013 Payback rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you want a good idea of what these guys go through, this is the book you read. Very well written but I would caution the reader to keep the author's bias in mind.
J. Harvey
Mar 28, 2009 J. Harvey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military
Another awesome, indepth project by Capt. Couch; gives great insight into the technical aspects of SEAL training that comes after BUD/S.
Aug 29, 2009 shay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a decent book about the continuing process for navy seals to earn their tridents and finish out their training. definitely interesting.
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Mr. Couch graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1967. He graduated from BUD/S training in Class 45 in 1969. He was a case officer for the CIA.
More about Dick Couch...

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