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Lone Survivor

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  63,281 Ratings  ·  6,354 Reviews
In June 2005, four US Navy SEALs left Afghanistan for the Pakistani border. Their mission was to capture or kill an Al Qaeda leader known to be in a Taliban stronghold surrounded by a small but heavily armed force. Less than 24 hours later, only one of those Navy SEALs was alive. This is the story of sole survivor Marcus Luttrell.
Paperback, 388 pages
Published May 1st 2008 by Sphere (first published June 12th 2006)
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Jamiekane Actually all of them did. Three of them were awarded the navy cross. Lt. Michael Murphy was awarded the medal of honor for his actions in trying to…moreActually all of them did. Three of them were awarded the navy cross. Lt. Michael Murphy was awarded the medal of honor for his actions in trying to save his men.(less)
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I REALLY wanted to like Lone Survivor. I mean, it's theoretically about a guy who survives an ambush by the Taliban when his teammates do not, goes on to receive shelter and protection from a brave Afghan village, and then writes about the bravery of his teammates who fought to their deaths.

But... the book is essentially Marcus Luttrell patting himself on the back. For more than 100 pages, he writes about training to become a Navy SEAL and how tough he is. I'm not saying that it is a small thing
Apr 20, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really wanted to like this book. Half a dozen of my immediate family members are currently serving or have served in the military, and I have nothing but respect for our brave men and women in uniform. And Operation Redwing, the 2005 mission that led to the largest loss of life in SEAL history, is the famous incident at the heart of this book. How could an account of that operation and SEAL team 10 turn out to be anything less than absolutely gripping? Well, Marcus Luttrell and his co-author m ...more
Bob Mayer
Dec 29, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
First, when one is a Lone Survivor, there is only one tale to be told from one source.
Second, don't say that you told a mother her son died quickly and not in pain and then write in detail how agonizing and how long his death took.
Third: The first thing we did in planning for a Special Operations mission anywhere in the world was to discuss how we were going to handle being discovered by the locals. Because anywhere you go in the world, you WILL get discovered by the locals. Sad to say, these g
This was our book club pick for this month. All I can say is THANK YOU KARIANN!! This book should be required reading for every American. It was life changing. I loved it. I have since scoured the Internet trying to learn as much as I can about Operation Redwing and it's heroes.

This is not the kind of book I would normally pick up and read. In fact, I had it on the counter and when Tyler came home and he thanked me for picking him out a great book from the library. He couldn't believe we were re
Apr 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You would not think I would love this book so much, since basically it is 100% about guys in military training, shooting, dead guys, blood, outdoor survival, guns, etc... I mean seriously, there is ZERO kissing in this book. But surprisingly, I was amazingly addicted to this book. Marcus Luttrel (the author, who the story is about) is AMAZING. I actually decided I wanted to be a Navy SEAL after reading this book, plus I wanted to go hunt Taliban guys. That is the way I judge a book as good. If i ...more
Feb 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
UNBELIEVABLE! I always thought those movies where the heroes get shot five times and fall off a cliff, but just keep getting up shooting were so unrealistic...apparently NOT! The second half of this book was impossible to put down - I was so caught up in the description of Operation Redwing. It was truly amazing and I will never think about our military in the same way again, even though I've always had a high opinion of the men and women fighting for our country. There was some slower reading i ...more
Mar 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have wanted to read this book since before I left for Afghanistan. Partly because of that as well as my own personal reasons in the military and in the Navy. Marcus Luttrell is a shipmate as were his brothers with him on Operation Redwing.
In late June 2005, I had just been stationed in Denver, CO for only a few months and I remember hearing about Petty Officer Luttrell and his SEAL team ambushed and calling for assistance during a dangerous capture/kill mission. All of the military and civili
I already reviewed this on Amazon...but here's my take on it, anyway:

Do not listen to 1-star reviews of this book by those taking on elitist attitudes towards the lack of flowery adjectives and fluff. It's more likely the writer's politics that bother them, so they assume the stance of literature snobs.

#1 - It's written the way it is because it's the recounting of a tale, a war story. Imagine sitting down with a beer, a crackling fireplace and a friend who has a very fascinating story to tell. H
Aug 24, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting book dealing with the training of Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell, his deployment in Afghanistan, his ordeal as the lone survivor of a combat mission, and how he is taken in by an Afghani village that stands up to the Taliban. The fight scene is riveting and agonizing, and the scenes where his Texas community rallies around his family pulls at your heart. The book is marred by numerous sprinklings of gratuitous references to the liberal media and how the liberals hate the army and are h ...more
Oct 31, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All Americans
This is one of those powerful life-changing books that will speak to generations of Americans forever. I’ve tried to write this review so many times since I first read Lone Survivor back in September and again after reading it for the second time in November….. I simply cannot find the words (unusual for me). I had friends lining up to borrow this book but until now, could not put it down, could not let it go. At last I felt ready to walk away from the friendships forged and battles fought withi ...more
Jerry Smith
Dec 31, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I read some great reviews of this book and I, like others who have reviewed this book in a less than glowing light, should add that I have nothing but admiration and respect for every soldier who puts his life on the line for Country, comrades and frankly for me. This story is inspirational and the survival of Luttrell is testament to his toughness.

So this review is not personal, is not meant to decry anything that he or his fellow SEALs stand for or did in this theatre of operation or generally
Jul 24, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Mindless garbage. This in no manner conceptualizes the essence and true madness of war. I have no tolerance for this mind-numbing bellicose crap. Honestly, books like this scare me. On a personal level, I was drawn into the military out of insecurity and false notions of what patriotism was. Besides its blatant agenda, (liberal media this, how the liberals hate the troop etc) it's also terribly written. As a veteran military officer, It frightens me that our young service member read this crap a ...more
Oct 28, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is not the type of book I usually read. But it was a gift, and I am happy I read it.

Like many stories of military operations gone awry, it was a difficult read at times. And I think Luttrell is at his best when discussing the training he underwent and his experience in Afghanistan. The people he meets in the small village are amazing; I loved that part.

What I didn't like so much were Luttrell's fairly frequent digressions. These digressions were mainly about two things, the Rules of Engagem
Dec 12, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It's hard to say how I feel about this book. If I say that the author sounded like a puffed up meathead, then I sound un-patriotic. He was a brave man who went through amazing training for the Navy SEALs and then went to covert ops in Afghanistan.
One part of the book truly bothered me, no, agitated me. He, at the turning point of his (true) story, said that they had only two choices: to kill the people who were going to report them to the Taliban, or let them go, but there was another choice. T
Mar 13, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Marcus Luttrell is a believer. That's a Vietnam era term for a person who believes in the cause. They also believe that might makes right and my country right or wrong. In effect even though he says he is not political he is a right wing conservative militarist.
Right off the bat he goes into a rant against "the liberal media" and continues berating the liberal media over mistakes the SEALs made themselves, praises George W. Bush and even has a good word to say for Don Rumsfeld. Apparently he ne
Oct 11, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book makes me want to punch myself in the face. As a former Army medic and the spouse of an Army Ranger who was actually on the mission that saved this "Great American" who is the lone survivor because he was looking out for himself not his comrades. I barely made it past the introduction of him boasting about how Navy Seals are all but Godly beings. I have nothing against Navy Seals or any other service member who puts their lives on the line. They are my brothers and sisters. It simply si ...more
Nov 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The words to describe my feelings towards this book are very hard to express. Though, other than my grandfathers who both served in WWII, I have no immediate family members who are in the military, but I was raised to love my country and respect and honor those who protect it. I've always held these values very close to my heart. With that part said my pride and respect for Marcus Luttrell and his fellow SEALs can never be expressed with mere words.

Lone Survivor is not my normal reading genre.
Joe Ferraro
Jan 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot of people say and agree that this book was horrible. They think that Luttrell may have been through a lot in is brave, however his writing skills are not the best. I agree, but I knew this before I started reading. I read this book to understand what Marcus went through and the experience of being a seal. He did an amazing job at that and that is what he should have done. He built up the plot in multiple ways by describing the scenarios he was in very well as well as describing how he felt ...more
Dec 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had heard that Marcus Luttrell was the Lone Survivor of his SEAL team, but I had no idea of how miraculous his survival was. I also didn't realize how much the team's fear of a vicious liberal media made in this tragedy. I wish that our fighting men and women didn't have to fear our own people. We are at war and need to be able to operate freely and be trusted to make the right decisions. Granted, there need to be rules and limitations, but because these men feared what would happen to them wh ...more
Jan 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the most riveting books I've ever read. It was written by a Navy SEAL who was the lone survivor (hence the title) in an Afghanistan raid. Ultimately, it is a tribute to the Navy SEALS who lost their lives in this bitter battle. I loved this book because Marcus shows us how he was destined to be a Navy Seal from his boyhood. He, along with his twin brother, survived the brutal training the Navy puts these guys through to weed out the weak. He and his team are put in the difficult t ...more
May 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A five man SEAL team undertook a mission in Afghanistan. Five days later, the lone survivor,Petty Officer Marcus Luttrell emerged battered,bruised and broken after being sheltered by village locals. This is his story.
I was drawn in immediately as the author gave his personal background and that of his teammates. SEAL training in all it's gritty detail is also given plenty of ink. Beyond the extreme physical requirements is the mental and emotional stamina that is required.
The details of the
Mar 17, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Jingoistic, patronising, arrogant, self-serving, delusional. That'd sum this book up. Be best for foreign relations if this book had never left US shores... His attitude towards the Afghanis is abhorrent. Quite shocking. I don't know if he thinks it makes him "cool" or "hard". But he manages to come off as an utter tool.

I read military books like they're going out of fashion, and usually am able to relate. This man is a pig. He is utterly incapable of dealing with humans. I sincerely hope he gro
Rex Fuller
Feb 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Didn't expect to think so highly of this. It is another SEAL memoir of BUD/S and war. And the edition I saw has a few technical errors (e.g., saying Bahrain is west of Saudi Arabia and the C-130 has Boeing engines). But this is the best SEAL memoir of the current war I have read. Once the team is inserted, the co-authors deliver a raw, detailed, picture of the men's courage in a nasty, no-win fight. Two things that will stay with me are, what Luttrell still hears every day from the battle and wh ...more
Jun 04, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Marcus Luttrell triumphed over quite an ordeal, and it would be hard not to be moved by it. He suffers through all kinds of hell but survives, and the book is made all the more interesting by the fact that it really happened and that similar challenges are faced by some of our soldiers right now.

The actual mission is only half the book however - the other half is about Luttrell's own background, and a significant portion of this is used to describe his training on the path to become a Navy SEAL
Ashlee Suddarth
May 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Lone Survivor, by Marcus Luttrell, is a compelling story of four navy SEALS and their beginning and finish. The book commences by telling the story of a young man who grew up to be a navy SEAL and the basic training that he endured. It amazes me that humans can actually make it through that type of strenuous training. The first part of the book is about the training and you would think that it couldn’t get worse, but it does. While the second half takes you through a disturbing battle that ...more
Jul 08, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Shauna by: Steve, Cade and Peggy
Shelves: military
I do not have the words to adequatley describe how much this book moved me. I am not usually a person to pick up this sort of book, but is was recommended to me by multiple people so I decided to give it a go, and am so glad that I did. You hear stories about people like this on the news, but nothing they say can really do the man or situation he was put in justice. I laughted and cried and threw the book down a few times in frustration for the situation that this country puts American soldiers ...more
May 29, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-books
Marcus Luttrell and I share a last name, but that’s where our similarities end. We must be related somehow, which was honestly the primary reason I wanted to read this. I wondered who he was, how he thought, and how his experiences have shaped his life. Now I know. And that is as much as I will ever want to know about him.

By all accounts, this should be an amazing story, and if you can look past all the childish, annoying, fanatic rants against “Liberal America,” there are parts of it that are t
Jan 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm giving 4 stars for the actual story and for the heroic efforts of Marcus Luttrell and all the Navy SEALs and combat soldiers who put their life on the line every day for America and for the cause of freedom. This is an amazing account, told by the guy who actually lived it, which, by definition, means that it was NOT written by a Hollywood script writer or by a well-seasoned fiction author. Therefore it comes across differently than we expect. Luttrell speaks from his heart, and there is not ...more
This is such a difficult book to review. I have read so many comments on negative reviews blasting reviewers for criticizing the book, suggesting the reviewer is anti-American or doesn't support our troops. I have read reviews that say, "Luttrell's story of survival is amazing, and for that alone, this book should get 5 stars." I disagree. Yes, his story is incredible, amazing, and should be heard. At the same time, the writing is not great, the tone is pure arrogance, and the rants about the li ...more
Aug 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book kicked glutes. It was written by a Navy seal who grew up outside Houston and briefly dated a colleague of mine. She says there's no way (from the intelligence she discerned in a week of dating) he could have written this book, which includes French phrases and plausable-sounding summaries of Pashtun history and culture. Therre is an "as told to" co-author so give that guy credit.

Nonetheless this is a great adventure/rescue/tragedy written by someone who believes what George Bush tells
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What would you do? 8 41 Feb 27, 2018 08:38PM  
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The Early Years
Born and raised in Texas, Luttrell and his twin brother, Morgan, attended Sam Houston State University. They began training for the SEALs at age 14 with former United States Army soldier, Billy Shelton, who lived nearby. As kids they loved to hunt and fish and wrestle alligators! Martial arts training has been an important role in Marcus’ life from the time he was a child.
I will
More about Marcus Luttrell

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“I will never quit. My nation expects me to be physically harder and mentally stronger than my enemies. If knocked down I will get back up, every time. I will draw on every remaining ounce of strength to protect my teammates and to accomplish our mission. I am never out of the fight.” 98 likes
“We know about bad guys, what they do, and often, who they are. The politicians have chosen to send us into battle, and that's our trade. We do what's necessary. And in my view, once those politicians have elected to send us out to do what 99.9 percent of the country would be terrified to undertake, they should get the hell out of the way and stay there.

This entire business of modern war crimes, as identified by the liberal wings of politics and the media, began in Iraq and has been running downhill ever since. Everyone's got to have his little hands in it, blathering on about the public's right to know.

Well, the view of most Navy SEALs, the public does not have that right to know, not if it means placing our lives in unnecessary peril because someone in Washington is driving himself mad worrying about the human rights of some cold-hearted terrorist fanatic who would kill us as soon as look at us, as well as any other American at whom he could point that wonky old AK of his.”
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