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Bravo Two Zero

(Andy McNab's Army Memoirs)

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  12,792 ratings  ·  392 reviews
In January 1991, eight members of the SAS regiment embarked upon a top secret mission that was to infiltrate them deep behind enemy lines. Under the command of Sergeant Andy McNab, they were to sever the underground communication link between Baghdad and north-west Iraq, and to seek and destroy mobile Scud launchers. Their call sign: BRAVO TWO ZERO.

Each man laden with 15 s
Paperback, 416 pages
Published November 1st 2005 by Corgi (first published 1991)
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Syd Barwick If you have read the three books written about Bravo Two Zero by patrol members (Bravo Two Zero by McNab, The One That Got Away by Chris Ryan, and Sol…moreIf you have read the three books written about Bravo Two Zero by patrol members (Bravo Two Zero by McNab, The One That Got Away by Chris Ryan, and Soldier 5 by Mike Coburn) I would advise reading "The Real Bravo Two Zero" by Micheal Asher, and "Eye Of The Storm" by Pete Ratcliff. Each tells a slightly different story. (less)

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Average rating 4.09  · 
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Igor Ljubuncic
This is a great book.

BTZ is one of the more famous SF operations (gone wrong) stories told in the modern era, made even more popular in a namesake movie with Ned Stark. It is told from the POV of the patrol leader Andy (pseudonym) leading his eight-man team on cable-cutting and Scud-hunting mission in Iraq just before the ground invasion phase of the 1991 Gulf War. They get discovered, they get captured.

Most of the focus is actually not on the fighting - even though the introduction and the brie
Dec 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First of all, this review is concerned with the book and the book alone; forget the conspiracy, bad mouthing and follow-ups which have followed in the decade since this came out. Instead, I'm just focusing on Bravo Two Zero the book and the book alone.

Of the various true-life war accounts written over the past century, it certainly stands out as a corker, chronicling the ill-fated 1991 mission from beginning to chaotic ending, beginning with the initial planning back at base, moving to behind e
Nov 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am giving this book a rating of 3.5

Review to come soon.
Thomas Fitzpatrick
Dec 18, 2016 rated it liked it
"I can read you like a book, and not a very good book. Certainly not Bravo Two Zero by Andy McNab. Which actually improves with every read." Alan Partridge.

As an Alan Partidge devotee, I thought it only proper I should read the great man's favourite book. It tells the story of an SAS misson during the first Gulf War. As an insight into the functioning of a special forces unit, it's a great read. Although heavy on jargon and military slang, it's always fast paced and it never gets in the way of
K Kamath
Jun 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book for a number of reasons, but one was the way it was written. I mean I believe I could actually see the method of writing, whether from taped interviews and transcriptions or from careful notes. The book was written the way McNab speaks and that voice is what comes through. You get the sense you are being told the story by a gifted story-teller, the kind of guy you want to hang out with and listen to his stories because, first and last, he tells a good story. The narrative mov ...more
Jan 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: avontuur, thriller
4,25 stars - English paperback - Thanks Trevor for the book - found the raiding entery in an old agenda. 🌷🌸🌷
John Farebrother
Jul 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Perhaps the ultimate action thriller - because it's all true. Mere mortals can only wonder at the feats of sheer physical endurance, not to mention courage and resourcefulness, displayed by members of the world's elite fighting force. Enough said? I won't bother to repeat what many learned commentators have said before me. I've read the book several times, and it never fails to grip and amaze. ...more
Apr 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: hellyeah, awe-some
What an exhilarating read! different versions of the real-life mission notwithstanding I am compelled to say, this book's narrative sounded as close as one could get to being sincere.

Only a man from the trenches could narrate so gruesome a story of interrogation and surviving it.

I was honestly surprised that a highly trained commando could write so well. Maybe he had help but not all that way I am hoping.

A must-read for all action-thriller lovers. However, I say that in reverence and deep res
Jan 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
"Britain's government has spent five years trying to gag Mike Coburn. His account of an SAS mission that went wrong is more about truth than heroics, reports Nick Ryan.

Bravo Two Zero. For many people those three words conjure up the image of the soldier hero: the special-forces trooper - the kind of cool-minded killer who could go anywhere and seemingly do just about anything. It was the call sign for a British Special Air Service (SAS) patrol during a mission in the 1991 Gulf War that was "comp
Mar 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Not a book I would normally have gravitated to but I admit, I was curious because the year I worked in a bookshop, this was our top seller. Also, this is the book I have bought most copies of ever, not for myself but from a variety of wholesale intermediaries as demand outstripped supply that year. So probably time to read it. I nearly did so about a decade ago but saw a bit of a TV version and found it unwatchable. Then I got a free copy, can't remember why though. Anyway, at nearly 20 years la ...more
Jul 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was looking for books covering the politics and upheavals in Middle East. This book is biography of a Special operations soldier - SAS from UK. The operation - Bravo Two Zero was carried out in 1st Gulf war in 1998, I picked thinking its from the 2003 Iraq war. But glad I did. The mission was to survey the scuds, cable lines in Iraq and the operation was called Bravo Two Zero.

When reading the risky operation, the responsibilities, the decisions to be taken on the fly, the physical and mental p
May 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: true-war-stories
A must read for all fans of true war stories. I think most people in the UK, if not the western world, who was around at the time of the first Iraq war will have at least heard of this mission. This narrative takes us from the period when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait up until after the war had ended and the prisoners of the patrol code-named Bravo-Two-Zero returned home.

I find that it is almost always worthwhile reading first-hand accounts alongside the 'official' histories as they tell you mu
Fabio Laporta
Jan 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: military
Iraq, January 1991.
During the first war in Iraq, one team of 8 soldiers of the Royal Special Air Service, the elite special forces of the Royal Army, was sent to operate beyond the Iraqi lines, in the middle of the desert. The name of the team was BRAVO TWO ZERO and their mission was to cut off some phone lines and to destroy Scud missiles mobile launch stations of Suddam Hussein. After a huge fight against Iraqi troops they aborted the original mission and instead escaped toward the border wit
Jun 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
As a fan of military history, I do have a passing understanding the 22nd Special Air Service with our allies in England. The boys at Hereford are a tough lot and we used the Regiment in establishing our own 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta. If you find yourself in the mood to find out what tough really is, read this book.

Bravo Two Zero is a harrowing story. One that you may have heard about once or twice in passing. The story is not so much about the failure of a patrol to locate
Jan 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books-read
I absolutely loved this book. I only began reading Andy McNabs books last year and have read a few of the Nick Stone series, some of which I have liked and others less so.

This book is completely different in that it is the true account of an SAS mission behind enemy lines. McNabs style of writing could be better however I think that this adds to the authencity of the account. After reading this, I am keen to read the Chris Ryan book "The one that got away" which is by a member of the same missio
Sep 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
A very good start and it had me gripped but lost interest and became fustrated quite soon after. A large amount of un needed detail on what I feel could have been cut down. 200 out of 400 pages of the same context spun changed slightly and repeated brought me close to insanity. Bravado for the work gone in but does it seem fabricated, defiantly so. Such a popular book on secrect services and i have no real idea why it's gained such acclaim. ...more
Apr 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
A really informative book about what it's like to be in the sas. The levels of torture that Andy and the other men had to go through is just horrific. Certainly not a job that many could do. ...more
Glen  Gilpin
Apr 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Well, at least it can't make us pregnant" ...more
Feb 01, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
This book has such a slow beginning - if you are really into guns, military planning and macho banter, then you'll probably love it, but I found it a bit of a slog to start with. But once the 8 man team is sent behind enemy lines, and everything goes to hell, it's a story that races along.

Forget all the arguments about how 'real' this story is, McNab does an excellent job of making it readable. Such a small thing - a goat herd in the wrong place - means their well planned mission is compromised,
Oliver Rabacal
Apr 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This kept me from homesick reading Bravo Two Zero when I was in Riyadh Saudi Arabia. A very beautiful true story from the account of a British SAS who was really deep in Iraq. From review "Their mission: To take out the scuds. Eight went out. Five came back. Their story had been closed in secrecy. Until now. They were British Special Forces, trained to be the best. In January 1991 a squad of eight men went behind the Iraqi lines on a top secret mission. It was called Bravo Two Zero. O ...more
Robbie G
Oct 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After taking a breather from military books with Fevre Dream, i got back to the elite warriors scene with the SAS for a change. It's always refreshing to read army action from the British point of view. different jargon, lingo, lifestyle.

It was after watching The Unit tv series that I got into Eric Haney's IDF. And then I was recommended by my brother to watch Strike Back, the Brits' own Unit-like tv series, found out it was based on a book as well, by Chris Ryan. Who was with the Bravo Zero Tea
Aug 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cheshire
22 SAS carried out a long-range deep interdiction/surveillance mission during the First Gulf War and ended up being placed between two regiments of the Iraqi Army. one eight-man element ended up being engaged in a 100-mile dash for freedom / running gun-fight that has generated no less than five separate books, starting with this one, by the element's commanding NCO, "Andy McNab." the resulting furore generated accusations and counter-accusations, with even the original assignment of the combat ...more
Joe Curtis
Oct 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: awesome
Andy McNab an ex SAS infantryman tells the story of his mission in the first gulf war.
Their call sign: Bravo Two Zero.
Dropped into the middle of Iraq, an eight man SAS squad is given orders to sever a main communications line that ran from north-west Iraq to Baghdad and to destroy any Scud missiles they find being launched along the way. But on the second day, they are compromised. They are forced to run from the entire Iraqi army and flee to the Syrian border, along the way they are subject to
Jan 19, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, military
I'd heard good things about this book and that it contained the amazing (true) story of an SAS patrol operating in Iraq. I had no idea nearly half of the book was about the author's experiences as a POW after his patrol was discovered. What he and others were forced to endure was truly horrible.

The writing wasn't perhaps as polished as a professional writer's, but I thought it added more to the story. It sounded like how a hard-working, professional soldier would describe what was happening to h
Jul 29, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
"I can read you like a book, and not a very good book. Certainly not Bravo Two Zero by Andy McNab. Which actually improves with every read." Alan Partridge.

I have a soft spot for military memoirs, but reading this publishing phenomena 20 years+ after it came out, you really have to wonder what all the fuss was about. There's not a lot of literary merit to be found here. It's a clunky piece of writing and McNab's inability to reflect on anything in a more this-is-what-happened-next narrative offe
Oct 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ray Kelly
Feb 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bravo Two Zero was the call sign of an eight-man British Army SAS patrol, inserted behind enemy lines into Iraq during the First Gulf War in January 1991 as part of the prelude to the Coalition ground invasion of Iraq. This top secret mission was commanded by Sergeant Steven Mitchell and this is the entertaining tale written under Mitchell’s pseudonym Andy McNab. Soon after being dropped the patrol found themselves surrounded by Saddam's army without working radios and with brutally cold weather ...more
Feb 14, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Andy McNab vividly captures the minutiae of what it means to be a special forces commando. His simplistic use of dialog and description only serves to heighten the tension. It's not so much as if you're reading a novel about commandos behind enemy lines as if you're actually in on the debriefing of those commandos. Any fan of military adventures fiction or otherwise should enjoy this book. The insights into how SAS missions are planned are simply amazing and the matter of fact way in which McNab ...more
Jun 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. Apparently there's some controversy about it? I haven't heard any of it, but I see it in some of the other reviews. Anywho, the book itself is very good. McNab tells his story very matter-of-factly. It doesn't sound impossible or even improbable really. A very readable account of Special Forces procedure and a capture and torture. He doesn't dwell too much on the mental state, but you get the feeling that mental state, as long as you're sane, isn't something you worry ...more
Jun 25, 2012 rated it did not like it
Nice read, but apparently Chris Ryan's The One That Got Away: My SAS Mission Behind Enemy Lines and Michael Asher's The Real "Bravo Two Zero". Maybe Mike Coburn's Soldier Five: The Real Truth About the Bravo Two Zero Mission are more accurate. ...more
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Andy McNab joined the infantry in 1976 as a boy soldier. In 1984 he was badged as a member of 22 SAS Regiment. He served in B Squadron 22 SAS for ten years and worked on both covert and overt special operations worldwide, including anti-terrorist and anti-drug operations in the Middle and Far East, South and Central America and Northern Ireland.

Trained as a specialist in counter terrorism, prime t

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Andy McNab's Army Memoirs (3 books)
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