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The Trident: The Forging and Reforging of a Navy SEAL Leader
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The Trident: The Forging and Reforging of a Navy SEAL Leader

4.35  ·  Rating details ·  1,682 ratings  ·  128 reviews
Decorated US Navy SEAL lieutenant Jason Redman served his country courageously and with distinction in Colombia, Peru, Afghanistan, and Iraq, where he commanded mobility and assault forces. He conducted over forty capture/kill missions with his men in Iraq, locating more than 120 al-Qaida insurgents. But his journey was not without supreme challenges—both emotional and phy ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published November 5th 2013 by William Morrow (first published July 15th 2013)
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 ·  1,682 ratings  ·  128 reviews

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Paul Kratochwill
Jul 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was a good book for an military outsider to read. As a military insider, I found that Jason Redman did not drill down too deep into the details of the particulars of his training and education as a Navy SEAL, but he presented enough detail that you were not wondering what he left out in his book. Most of the SEALs I knew and know are like what Jason became after he made a serious tactical error during a mission in Afghanistan. In the military, and certainly in the SEAL community, you had to ...more
Noah W
Dec 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013
My favorite military and leadership book of the year.

Military Element:
Redman and Bruning capture the adrenaline of the moment while retaining critical details that keep the reader engaged. This book also did not spend half the book recounting BUD/s & Hell Week like most Navy SEAL memoirs; although I believe Redman's perspective would have been extremely insightful.

Leadership Element(Spoilers):
This side of the story is what makes this book stand above the rest. The book tracks Redman's career fr
Feb 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book was awesome and really hit home with me. It's not your typical Navy SEAL, train hard, learn a bunch of stuff, then do amazing things for our country. It's truly one man's journey to becoming a true leader and the amazing and hard lessons he learned along the way. He initially wants to become a Navy SEAL because of the cool guy factor. I think many are drawn to this aspect of the Navy SEALs. It's tough training and he's a small (skinny) guy, but he guts it out and makes it. He eventuall ...more
Jul 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book should be on every leader's reading list or for anyone in the military/police/fire services. Lt. Redman details his leadership journey juxtaposed with his military career. Themes of personal development, self-reflection, and emotional maturity are addressed in such a way that the message comes across as an honest conversation the author is having with the reader. Politics aside, the men and women of our services who have been injured in the line of duty all deserve our appreciation. Do ...more
Nov 23, 2013 added it
An impressive story of a man and what he goes through in terms of personal and professional growth. These are the people we should be thanking for all that we have.
Jun 26, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2018
For all the developed self-awareness, was disappointed Redman never explored why he was deployed to Iraq in the first place. Out of the scope of this book I suppose.
Jan Mcclung-short
Aug 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
An excellent book on the life of a Navy Seal. This book deals with the life and growth of a leader. Being a Seal is hard enough, but learning the leadership role of dealing with all type A personalities is extra hard. The author tells of his journey through all the trials of Seal life. From the very beginning where he is a scranny kid with a dream till he is a leader worried about the brotherhood and leading his team to battle the enemy....whoever they may be. Until he is battling the deamins th ...more
May 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: military, biography
There are many books out there that provide a first person narrative of the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq and they are generally quite good. That said, I would say this one might be one of the best I have read in a while. Not only is this a narrative of Jay's time in the war but it goes farther into his struggles as a leader in the SEALs, his work to earn back his comrade's trust and then his recovery through the horrific injuries he suffered during a firefight, a week or so before he was to ship ...more
Aug 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Excellent story. It follows Redman through marital issues, hospitalizations from combat injuries. He shares stories about his hospital experiences, many combat experiences and how all that affected his marriage and his children. He has a co-author who helped him during his recovery and with writing events of his recovery processes.

I kept closing the book and couldn't sleep. I HAD to know how this man's story was going to end before I could get him out of my mind.

It's sentimental, its sections of
Feb 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Redman's mistakes in leadership while in the SEAL teams are not uncommon from those made by many other people in this world. While I would never suggest that the consequences of those choices are always of the same magnitude as those faced by operators on specialized teams like the SEALS, he's not alone. I applaud his ability to be introspective in this book, as it takes a great man to admit his faults, but even an even greater man to do something about them. The fact that he is willing to share ...more
Mar 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: military, favorites
Amazing! Great story. I actually read this book during one of the darkest periods of my life. It was one of the best things I could have done. To read his story is to feel like you were beside him as he overcame again and again. This book helped me to stop feeling sorry for myself and has helped me have a positive attitude ever since. Want a great story, read this book. Want to overcome the blues or self pity, read this book. Want to know that there are still American's who have the courage, dev ...more
Mike Eakins
Apr 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I normally don't get down with reads like this, but I just picked it up one day while at sea and just could not put it down. The way LT Redman describes his tours overseas, from enlisted to commission, internal struggles with being in the military and the demons that go along with this way of life is life in its purest form. You don't have to be in the military to appreciate the book. If you want a great life adventure and something to help you put life in perspective, I suggest giving the book ...more
Feb 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very well written book about a hard transition from enlisted to commissioned navy seal officer and eventual life transforming physical sacrifice in the name of a war not easily acknowledged at home. Brave story of learning from one's errors and learning the quality of humility. To some it comes naturally, to others, like Redman, it needs to be acquired, forged and reforged.

On another note, his love story with Erica, as told throughout the book, is an inspiration in itself. Unconditional love is
Mar 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Navy SEAL Jason Redman uses his experience in the SEALs to show how servant leadership is the only truly effective long term way to lead. His story of toughness in battle and recovery from injury is inspiring. It's a page turner.
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Why This Book: I had heard several years ago that this was a well-done personal story by a SEAL – which included a lot of humility – not often found in books SEALs write about themselves. I lead a volunteer reading group for young men in the SEAL Basic Training Command’s Pre Training, Recovery and Rehabilitation (PTRR) phase, who are preparing to begin and go thru SEAL training. We selected this book based on its reputation – I hadn’t read it yet – so that was enough motivation to finally get to ...more
Shannon Wise
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is Jason Redman's story of his life. He was wounded in Iraq. I say wounded. He was shot twice in the arm and once in the face. That shot destroyed his nose and has required many surgeries to repair the damage. But this is also the story of his life.

I'm going to flat-out say that I hated him in the beginning of this book. He was arrogant and didn't take responsibility for anything he did. But, as I learned later. That was the point. Jason learned - the very hard way- how to be a leader.

Tracey Cramer-Kelly
Nov 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir
where he was gravely injured. It’s detailed and compelling. I felt like I was there, trying to get to him like his guys were.

Then he backtracks and tells us how he got to that point. It wasn’t a smooth journey; in fact, he was nearly ostracised from the SEAL teams due to his arrogance. Jay grappled with his own self-doubts, his faults, and his frustrations, and in this book he lays them all out for the reader. He holds nothing back, honestly admitting his mistakes. It was incredibly insightful.

Erik Sapp
Aug 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
The beginning of this book is very slow, and I had difficulty getting into it. Then the author gets to his history and what led him to the night he was wounded, and the book takes off.

I love books about special operations - regardless of the service. (My favorites are SEALs and Pararescue Jumpers, but I like any.) I've read a lot of books by SEALs about their time in service, and this one is by far the best. It's so personal. LT Redman is up-front and honest about his mistakes and the roads it
Bridget Bailey
Apr 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I typically love books about navy seals or the military or wars so I thought this would be a great book as well since it was recommended to me by my siblings. I did not love this one as much as others such as lone survivor. I did like that Jason did eventually figure himself out and start getting better but I did think that most of the book, he was a bit of an ass. He constantly went against rules and leadership and was so full of himself. He was very fortunate a number of times to have other se ...more
Frank DeGaray
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lieutenant Redman's book is one of my favorites of the genre. He doesn't leave anything off the table in regards to his life and career in the military. In a time when SEALS are regarded as untouchable super human soldiers who never fail and rarely struggle... his story will educate those to the true reality. While it is absolutely true that these men are brave, strong, disciplined and well trained they are human. They have personal lives and relationships that are not always perfect....just lik ...more
Gerry Poling
Jan 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a journey which is still in progress.

I chose to read this book to understand better my family members military experiences for our country. I am the granddaughter, niece, sister, aunt, cousin, and friend of many who served. The book does lead us through all the phases of development of an individual who puts their heart, soul, mind. and body into a life/job/profession with strong ideals as the base. .... "What can you do for your country" ? a strong tenet for all to live by, for t
Julia Richards
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
How inspiring this book is. Not just what this trident holder has went through to protect this country. But, all the people that he touched, and all the people who supported him when he paid the ultimate price. He was lucky to be alive. The pain he has endured. What his wife and children have had to endure. But they did it together. Unconditional love. Yet, he is so humbled by the fact that he is still here, but many of his brothers are not. Thanks for sharing this story of growth and heartache. ...more
Michael Brennan
Sep 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Every soldier's story should be heard, and this is one of the more interesting ones. I'm not sure that it works as an antiwar book or leadership book, but the elements that would make it so are worthwhile.

I wish the line about God loving the warrior had been reversed. It's more accurate to say "Warriors love God." Got a love soldiers because he loves everyone, but to exalt Warriors is to exalt war... and that seem runs through the book which helps to glorify war rather than preach against it.
John H. Steffens
Five Star, just read

The story of becoming a man and a great human being. To have the ability to look at yourself critically and the inner strength and resolve to become better. I could not put this down and literally read it in one day. Jay, you and Erica are my heroes. May God bless you and your family. May He watch over our military and keep them safe. I long for the day we can all live in peace.
Sep 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The author does a great job of using his military stories as a backdrop for larger lessons on leadership. Many books in this genre tend towards glorifying the battle stories and then stretching to attach a broader meaning. This book does just the opposite. You'll learn about leadership and then it gets tied back to a relevant story from the author's time overseas.
Nov 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: iraq-war
Good solid read. I became interested in Redman's story after seeing him speak during a History Channel documentary about the SEALs. When I saw Redman's injuries I knew he would have an incredible story. This book is different than most SEAL memoirs. Redman is brutally honest about his shortcomings and his road to redemption. Plenty of good leadership lessons. I wished Redman would've discussed more about his recovery and life after the SEAL teams.
Jeffrey Potter
Aug 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Jason Redman is brutally honest on how his early career as a SEAL he was not acting as a leader even though he was operating as one. This is easy to see mirrored in jobs I've been in. His tale of how he got it turned around though is really telling in how we can all make changes, and sometimes we need to hear it from someone we respect that gives it to us bluntly.
Rob Crockett
Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another excellent Seal / Special Ops memoir. This one is unique in that there is a lot of material about Jason's recovery after his horrific injuries. Jason is very honest and self-aware. He seems to repeat his same mistakes even after having "come to Jesus" moments, which wasn't really explained. But the book is excellent.
Nina Orlando
Jan 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Amazing. Jason Redman's words will make you cry and laugh repeatedly. This book was very hard to put down. I highly recommend everyone read it and learn from his story. It was an honor and privilege to meet him as well. He's a genuinely kind and fun person. Mr. Redman, thank you again, for your service and sacrifice for us all.
Karl Petersen
Oct 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A love story, from a slightly different point of view.

Truly one of the greatest books I've ever read. I couldn't put it down. It's not just about SEALS and war, it's about a deeply personal journey and a remarkable marriage.

A fantastic read.
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