The Junior Officers' Reading Club by Patrick Hennessey
Killing Time and Fighting Wars

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Synopsis

Hailed as a classic of war writing in the U.K., The Junior Officers' Reading Club is a revelatory first-hand account of a young enlistee's profound coming of age. Attempting to stave off the tedium and pressures of army life in the Iraqi desert by losing themselves in the dusty paperbacks on the transit-camp bookshelves, Hennessey and a handful of his pals from military academy form the Junior Officers' Reading Club. By the time he reaches Afghanistan and the rest of the club are scattered across the Middle East, they are no longer cheerfully overconfident young recruits, hungering for action and glory. Hennessey captures how boys grow into men amid the frenetic, sometimes exhilarating violence, frequent boredom, and almost overwhelming responsibilities that frame a soldier's experience and the way we fight today.

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About Patrick Hennessey

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Patrick Hennessey was born in 1982 and educated at Berkhamsted School and Balliol College, Oxford, where he read English. On leaving university he joined the Army and served from 2004 to 2009 as an officer in The Grenadier Guards. In between guarding towers, castles and palaces he worked in the Balkans, Africa, South East Asia, the Falkland Islands and deployed on operational tours of Iraq and Afghanistan. On leaving the Army he wrote his first book The Junior Officers' Reading Club, a memoir of a brief but eventful stint in uniform. He is now a barrister.
 
Published September 7, 2010 by Riverhead Books. 310 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, War. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Junior Officers' Reading Club

The Guardian

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When Patrick Hennessey read his lively memoir of army life on Radio 4's Book of the Week, it was accompanied by tracks by the Lostprophets, Metallica, Coldplay and others.

Sep 12 2009 | Read Full Review of The Junior Officers' Reading ...

The Guardian

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As if to rival (or overwhelm) the range of voices on Afghanistan - from the anguished cries of Wootton Bassett to David Cameron's cynical attempts to blame Gordon Brown personally for helicopter shortages - comes this extraordinary memoir by a young Grenadier Guards officer fresh from the Middle ...

Aug 14 2009 | Read Full Review of The Junior Officers' Reading ...

New York Journal of Books

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The Junior Officers’ Reading Club should be read by by all of us who don’t and won’t and can’t know a world like it, but whose lives are secured by these soldiers’ efforts and sacrifices.

Sep 07 2010 | Read Full Review of The Junior Officers' Reading ...

Bookmarks Magazine

Hennessey captures how boys grow into men amid the frenetic, sometimes exhilarating violence, frequent boredom, and almost overwhelming responsibilities that frame a soldier's experience and the way we fight today.

Watch a Video

Sep 06 2010 | Read Full Review of The Junior Officers' Reading ...

Reader Rating for The Junior Officers' Reading Club
62%

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