Fobbit by David Abrams

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It's not an insult to Abrams to say that Fobbit suffers badly from the comparison it invites. As Heller is said to have replied when someone pointed out that he'd never written anything else as good as Catch-22: "Who has?"
-Guardian

Synopsis

Fobbit ’fä-bit, noun. Definition: A U.S. soldier stationed at a Forward Operating Base who avoids combat by remaining at the base, esp. during Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003-2011). Pejorative.

In the satirical tradition of Catch-22 and M*A*S*H, Fobbit takes us into the chaotic world of Baghdad’s Forward Operating Base Triumph. The Forward Operating base, or FOB, is like the back-office of the battlefield – where people eat and sleep, and where a lot of soldiers have what looks suspiciously like a desk job. Male and female soldiers are trying to find an empty Porta Potty in which to get acquainted, grunts are playing Xbox and watching NASCAR between missions, and a lot of the senior staff are more concerned about getting to the chow hall in time for the Friday night all-you-can-eat seafood special than worrying about little things like military strategy.

Darkly humorous and based on the author's own experiences in Iraq, Fobbit is a fantastic debut that shows us a behind-the-scenes portrait of the real Iraq war.
 

About David Abrams

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David Abrams served in the U.S. Army for twenty years, and was deployed to Iraq in 2005 as part of a public affairs team. He was named the Department of Defense's Military Journalist of the Year in 1994 and received several other military commendations. His stories have appeared in Esquire, Narrative, and other literary magazines. He lives in Butte, Montana.
 
Published September 4, 2012 by Grove Press, Black Cat. 388 pages
Genres: War, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Fobbit
All: 3 | Positive: 0 | Negative: 3

NY Times

Below average
Reviewed by Christian Bauman on Sep 28 2012

Abrams makes some beginner’s errors: the dialogue is occasionally stilted, and I wish he spent more time with the actual Fobbits instead of the infantryman Capt. Abe Shrinkle...

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Sam Leith on Apr 04 2013

It's not an insult to Abrams to say that Fobbit suffers badly from the comparison it invites. As Heller is said to have replied when someone pointed out that he'd never written anything else as good as Catch-22: "Who has?"

Read Full Review of Fobbit | See more reviews from Guardian

LA Times

Below average
Reviewed by Nicholas Basbanes on Sep 17 2012

The problem with writing a darkly comic novel about soldiers caught in the maelstrom of modern warfare is...comparison with Joseph Heller's classic "Catch-22," which is unfortunate...there's only one Mt. Everest in the Himalayas.

Read Full Review of Fobbit | See more reviews from LA Times

Reader Rating for Fobbit
75%

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