Amy's Reviews > Joker One: A Marine Platoon's Story of Courage, Leadership, and Brotherhood

Joker One by Donovan Campbell
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's review
Jan 05, 2009

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Read in December, 2008

** spoiler alert ** A thoughtful, detailed look by a Princeton grad cum Marine officer at bringing together a unit of Marines to be battle-ready, and then going to his first battle zone, Iraq in 2004. The writing is a bit rough in spots, it won't be a spoiler-alert to tell anyone that the reader knows intuitively early on not all of these men will make it back in one piece, and some won't make it back at all. Campbell's earnest and truthful acknowledgment of inexperience in leading - yet he is their leader...his bone-crushing intention not to make a mistake that could cost his men their very lives are depicted vividly. He's managed to replay his thinking, putting the reader in his shoes, of trying to think clearly, for example, when a rocket blast has just deafened him. Brief, sympathetic character development brings his men and fellow officers to life.

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