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Volume 3 of MUST read in collaboration with @books_for_operators.


Sheepdog With a Black Belt

Paul Landreth-Smith

Here’s a book that I’m positive many of my LEO folks will enjoy, as well as my combative, martial arts, and self-defense contingents.
Paul Landreth-Smith, 30-year career in martial arts, consisting of numerous styles and multiple black belts, SWAT operator, plainclothes police, bouncer, Krav Maga instructor, and paramedic…
This man has some stories to tell.
And, that is really what “Sheepdog” is. An entertaining collection of thoughts, stories, and meditations are drawn from Paul’s extensive experience. Stories from throughout his life in increasingly more intense situations. Each with a reflection on what he learned from them.
Fights in bars, fights on the street, fights with gang members, fights in the cage. Paul has fought, again and again. If for no other reason than the action, this is a pretty fun read. But there is more to it than just straight right crosses and headbutts.
Paul includes important thoughts and considerations regarding martial arts, combative, and self-defense. The differences, the crossovers, and how to ensure you are training in the most appropriate for your interests.
This one comes from our thinking warrior community. Give him some support. You can find this book on Amazon, and find Paul over @pewpew.kravmaga.biker .


Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

Yuval Noah Harari

Though published in 2014, before the overt presence of much of today’s unrest and current global upheaval, Sapiens is as relevant as if it was published yesterday.
Lucid, eye-opening, and mind-expanding. Harari does an excellent job of presenting the expanse of human history in digestible chunks. Never going too far into unnecessary detail, or zooming so far out as to be cold. Generally reserving judgment and instead presenting events in an amoral light, Harari allows the reader to see much of history in a different light.
I read this against a backdrop of GBA+, critical race theory, intersectionality, and various other contemporary societal constructs. As well, hot on the heels of a string of holocaust material and listening to @martyrmade Fear and Loathing in the New Jerusalem podcast series dealing with a very relevant period in human history.
I think the clarity and clear-eyed manner that Harari writes in was a welcome reprieve. That being said, I also read much of it while 10km out into the mountains with no one around but my cousin who stood beside me fishing in the blue-green mountain lake. I was there trying to get away from our collective self-induced insanity. This book gave a new perspective.
I thoroughly enjoyed the entire book. Most of it has nothing to do with the above paragraph, and instead traces Homo Sapiens from the forests and caves to our modern dwellings of glass and steel and plastic, making stops along the way to examine major milestones in our development.
Definitely read this.


The Soldiers Story: Tales from Within the SAS

Jack Ramsay

This was a successful rescue operation.
A while back I went to a wedding at a lodge in the mountains. In the basement lounge area was a bookshelf full of random reads. There was also the distinct feeling that none of those books had been touched in years. I liberated this classic beauty from that death sentence, and now I share it with you. Save your morality.
Thanks to an unexpected weather-driven layover, I chomped this one down in a day’s travel. I wasn’t expecting too much (given the TV series ad, and the late 90’s publication date), but I was pleasantly surprised.
This book turns out to be a pretty good “soldier’s ground point of view”, rollicking bit of storytelling from a collection of Blades at various times in the regiment’s history. From inception up through the Gulf War, this book gives you a look at some of the adventures, exploits, and missions through the eyes (apt cover) of the assaulters who lived them.
Not a bad bit of airplane literature at all. So, to Snapper, Lofty, Matt, R.F., Sek, and all the others who shared their stories on these pages, thank you.
What have been your favorite memoir/collective histories of various units? Hit the comments below and share.


A Failed State: An International War On Terror

Andrew E. Coussens

Take note!
I bring you, A Failed State. A tense, highly personal, and vivid story of the GWOT told by someone who has walked the talk.
Our protagonist, Damien C/S Omen, an operative in a governmental intelligence organization, is balancing numerous deployments, a crumbling marriage, fatherhood, and trying to stay alive in an environment hostile to him.
Damien and his team are hot on the tail of key leaders in the newly growing ISIS Khorason in A’stan. Working sources for HUMINT to fuel the next op, Damien, Cam, Loki, and Team Lead Leo is on the frontier of today’s war. Gunfights, spec ops, VBIEDs, and politics, it’s all in these pages.
I ripped through this one in about a 36 hour period. Once I started reading, I was hooked. It’s a page-turner that grabs you right away thanks to its relatability. One of the testimonials in the opening cover pages has it right when it says the detail and language are obviously derived from close personal experience.
@a_failed_state_novel is now active in the veteran community and is available for public speaking engagements and other related activities. Reading the bio and some info given in the book, Coussens has been through some rough years, and has, fortunately, for all, been able to package the losses, wisdom, and experiences into not only gripping reads but into avenues to aid fellow vets and their families.
Seriously, go by his page and check it out.

Stay safe and keep training