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Special Forces - Veterans

(Special Forces #3)

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  1,274 ratings  ·  223 reviews
Special Forces is the story of a Scottish SAS soldier and a Soviet spetsnaz soldier. Two enemies who meet in the line of duty during the early days of the Soviet Union's last war in Afghanistan. Behind enemy lines respect and finally love grow ... but that's only the official version. This epic spans across over twenty-five years of their lives. It's harsh and violent, but ...more
Paperback, First Edition, 573 pages
Published March 28th 2010 by Camouflage Press
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Average rating 4.31  · 
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 ·  1,274 ratings  ·  223 reviews

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Aug 17, 2011 rated it liked it
That’s how I feel. The story in ‘Mercenaries’ and ‘Veterans’ feels like a betrayal.
SF- Soldiers was incredible, not just a slice of real life. It was, first and foremost, a grand and magnificent love story. It described a love so extraordinary, so beautiful in its brutality and intensity, I was crying for days afterwards.
However, reading the Mercenaries cycle was like a punch to the stomach. What you get is a promiscuous Mad Dog with hardly any morals or sense of caring towards Vadim
Julio Genao
Dec 08, 2012 rated it liked it
here's the thing.

this book—and the overall three-volume epic it concludes—isn't finished. it's semi-currently undergoing a righteous edit, and the difference between the edited text and the original is notable.

further, the fucking thing is massive. it is a work of staggering ambition—hubris, even—or maybe just balls the size of my head. a story that spans 25 years? a million words? yeah.

too much, in other words. too much to review with my typical mix of douchebag flippancy and stentorian gravita
4 Stars.

An epic story.Yes,I've had many issues with this series but I wouldn't have missed reading it for anything.
I've read all of it with my lovely friend Andrea.

Review soon.

Dear Lawd, how I wish to have a way with words to describe how much this series gave me, as a reader, and as a person.

It has been an incommensurable experience.

It gave so much freedom to my mind to wander and linger and question and accept and be awed. It gave me a degree in tolerance, a master in forgiveness, a PhD in acceptance.

Special Forces is a lifetime journey of blood and darkness and hatred and compassion and passion and despair but above all love in one of the harshest and cruel backg
Oct 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
25 Years!
And now it's over...

Living the last 25 years vicariously through a million words, taking me through the passage of time, places and seasons has been an experience I shall never forget.
Dan and Vadim, my warriors. You were my pain and my joy and I shall love you forever.
This story, the pleasure and the pain will forever be with me. All of it, every moment, every comrade, lover, friend or foe.
This was just the most emotionally charged, exhilarating, frustrating and heartbreaking ad
Sep 30, 2012 rated it really liked it

Done. I feel like I ran a grueling marathon...and came in first place! That exhausted. That elated.

I will miss you Vadim and Dan. You’ve changed my life…seriously.

Sorry to friends and family and DVR who have gone neglected.
Sorry to Goodreads community for being such a basket case.
Sorry to books and ARC’s and Buddy Reads I passed over.
Sorry to the exclamation point for overusing you in every update, comment, and review.

The Review:

Veterans was the perfect ending to an amazing series. It felt like
Mar 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: pdf, kindle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 15, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m, e-book, free-stuff
Veterans is the fourth book in the epic Special Forces series and it’s the final part of Dan and Vadim’s story. Unfortunately: it wasn’t the ending this series deserved.
Don’t get me wrong: this is not a bad book. And it breaks my heart to give it 3,5 stars, but Veterans just did not come up to the standards of the previous three books. It didn’t show the same level of enthusiasm, attention to detail, depth or nuance as the rest of the series.

My major problem was that Veterans felt like an epi
I hope I’ll be able to find coherent words for a review. Looking back at 25 years in the life of these two completely different men who found love in a world of blood and gore completely swept me off my feet. Consider this a spoiler-laden (!) review of the whole series, not just the last book.

(view spoiler)
*******Review contains spoilers*******

4.5 stars for the book but 5 stars for the series.

I just finished Veterans and what a sad day it is. I can't believe my journey with Vadim and Dan is over. Twenty-five years of passion, anger, violence, loneliness, torture and above all LOVE. I miss them already!

Veterans is the final book in Special Forces and although I did love it, I had a few problems with this book. My expectations were higher mainly because it was the last installment and I wanted eve
Sep 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nick Pageant
Dec 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m
So ends the epic BR with Mark!

I'm not sure what I'm going to do now. I am lost. Review to come.
Feb 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: military

That's it! The journey of twenty five years is over. No, that's not true, for Vadim and Dan the journey of their life together isn't over yet, but we are leaving them in the confidence that they'll manage their best years without us watching over them!

I totally agree with Suec (she buddy-read Mercs II with me - thx sweets:). Every emotional heart string has been pulled. Love, fear, pain, longing, devastation, euphoria, despair, anger, desperation and again and foremost, love.

Veterans is a worth

They are happy tears...
because of HEA...

but I'm crying because I have already missed them, the most unforgeable characters ever, two men to die for, my Dan and Vadim...

My first spontaneous desire after I've turned the last page was to go back to Soldiers and start the whole epic from the very beginning.
I have never had this urgent uncontrolled desire before and I read a lot. I am still not ready to say goodbye to Dan and Vadim. Will I see you again?...

Thank you for the 25 years of the h
Aug 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
"A hard beginning maketh a good ending."
- by John Heywood -

"...I promise to respect, support and care for you, to honor and encourage you."
"...I will respect you as an individual and be true to you through all the changing scenes of life - in good times and in bad. I undertake to fulfill this promise until life's end."
"I give you this ring as a token of my love and a lasting reminder of the promises made between us today. I promise to care for you above all others and cherish you throughout t
Jan 16, 2012 rated it liked it

Well, Veterans was better than Mercenaries, but still no where near as good as Soldiers. There were parts that I chose to skim due to either aggravation or boredom, but there were some really touching, important moments as well. Here are my thoughts:

(view spoiler)
25 years epically unforgetable!

It is very difficult to put in words everything that these books gave to me! There were so many different emotions, some good, some not so good, and others devastating! Pain, sorrow, joy, happyness... love... and every one of these emotions are nailed in my heart and my soul, and forever they will be!

 photo 2960807e-22b0-407b-81b5-c44b38b3010f_zpsbe451b6a.jpg

I was, once again, drowned in a sea of feelings while reading Veterans! There were no more wars to fight, but there were fightings with traumas and depression! Dan
The view from Calton Hill of the Balmoral Hotel and Princes St, Edinburgh.

Wow, what a book, loved it! I shall have to start again with 'Soldiers' shortly or I shall feel bereft...

"Holy Fuck." Dan exhaled, "it really is real, then, aye? What the hell happened to us along the way? We used to be so cool and reckless."
"We grew up, got modestly well-off, and somehow stood each other for twenty-five years."
May 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Laura by: Christina
4.5 Stars

“to love, loyalty, friendship, and trust!”

The thought of letting go and saying goodbye to Vadim and Dan is just too painful to face. I thought the longer I put off this review the more time I had with this story, characters, and emotion running through my blood. Stalling is a skill. ;) But then it hit me. *slaps hand to forehead* Vadim and Dan are not going anywhere! They will forever hold a place in my heart and mind. This epic tale consumed me, made me laugh, cry, crave, scream, think
I went through the last lines of Veterans a few minutes ago and I feel I've reached the end of the toughest journey in my life. I can't believe I'm done...

This last installment was a lot different. More mellow, more emotional, the characters more introspective. The pace was much faster and there was much less dialogue.
But it didn't matter. It was alright. Like the last leg of any journey, it slowed down. After all, you need to move to shallower waters before reaching the shore.

Some small things
May 24, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m, free-always, war
This is not my review of Veterans. My review of Veterans was written in my usual snarky fashion, full of similes and metaphors, conveying the very similar sentiments that I expressed in my Mercenaries reviews. I threw out my review of Veterans. You get that I feel the SF sequels are a passable three stars. Entertaining and recommendable, but not exceptional. This is what I produce after days of stimulating, healthy discussions that burn the midnight oil and make me question, “What is it about th ...more
Jun 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Special Forces in 3 parts, Soldiers, Mercenaries and Veterans.

I am not sure that I can do this book justice. It grabs you from the very first page and doesn't let you go until the end; and then stays with you.

Above all else, this is a love story; a very passionate love story. We are made to feel, no, obliged to feel, all the joy and ecstasy of love, all the pain and agony of love. It is a love that tears you apart, heals you, wounds you and makes you whole. If you have never had this love, the n
Read 2-9 December 2012
Reread 8-16 October 2016

Special Forces is still my absolute favourite m/m series of all time, there's just no getting away from it. After a 4 year break I've read the entire series again with my initial 'buddies' Steph and G, and actually think I enjoyed it even more this time around. Last time I was so worried that Dan and Vadim wouldn't make it to the end that it sort of ruined my enjoyment of Veterans. I could relax a bit more this time and really take the time to enjoy
Tara♥ {MindforBooks}
"There be dragons, and he’d been riding on one for too long."

So it comes to an end. I am currently in mourning. I was desperate to get through Dan and Vadim’s story because I needed to see how this epic love story ended. Now that it’s over I want to start all over again. I miss them.

Special Forces put me through the wringer. I am, at this moment an emotional basket case. Honestly though? It was worth it. Getting to see the development of a relationship that spans 25 years with beautiful highs a
Lisa Arbitrary - AttentionIsArbitrary M/M Blog
Mar 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: mature, m/m, adult

Right away the authors took my soul, slammed it down, hard. Ripped me apart, tore me, exposed me and continued to destroy me. Then little by little they began piecing me back together again but not without letting me slam back to pain, weakness and deep depression over and over again. All without losing me anywhere along the way. In the end, they were kind enough to reassemble all the parts and re-fill my soul with hope and happiness but not without leaving a deeply affected core that is very
I don't think I can put into words how I truly felt about this story. If you're reading reviews on the final chapter, then you probably already know what you've gotten into.

All I can say, is that after 25 years with Dan and Vadim, I've been shown depths and complexities of human emotion and desires that I never knew before, including some I never thought I wanted to understand. There is a quote in Soldiers, in which Vadim explains to Dan why reading is important to him. That it is about discove
I really can't believe it's over. I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

Maybe laugh, because I made it through all those nights of staying up until stupid ‘o’clock. Reading until my eyes burned and being woken up by my Kindle smashing me in the face because I fell asleep whilst reading in bed again.
Honestly though, I think I'll probably just cry. This series was so much more than I ever could have expected and I am devastated that I've finished...

************** Spoilers Ahead ****************
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
~Mindy Lynn~
Dec 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
It feels bittersweet for it to come to an end. I really enjoyed reading the story of Dan and Vadim. It's an epic story that I will forever remember.
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63 likes · 9 comments
“You made me human. I stand by that. You made me into somebody I would have wanted to become, if I'd ever thought about what I wanted to be that wasn't about a record or power or a rank or some...delusion I was chasing. If all that was gone and stripped away, the man I am, I am because of what you did, what you made me feel all those years.” 56 likes
“Vadim smiled. “I’m not meeting him. We’ll be friends.”
Dan still didn’t say anything, just nodded, the smile still there, then turned and walked through the living room and onto the patio, all the way through the French windows. Looking out over the old orchard and the mountains when Vadim got to his side, reaching over to take Dan’s hand. Worth it. A thousand times. Any sacrifice, from the small ones to the big ones, and Dan turns his head, looking fully at him, while the smile grew. He didn’t need to say anything, didn’t have to voice the “I love you”. It was there, unsaid, yet outspoken.
Fourteen years, they didn’t come cheap.”
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