Reading Material

Discussion in 'Join the Army - Regular Officer Recruiting' started by Sentinel89, Dec 11, 2010.

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  1. Hello gentlemen, it has been awhile!

    I have been off busy training and actually doing a lot of reading. Just thought I would throw up a few books I have gone through that you may or may not have heard of, that I was told to read and am now happy I did. There are of course a ton of others but these are fairly new and I found enlightened me on things I had never thought about.

    Basically the top three are:

    Leading from the front - Richard Dannatt

    An interesting book since only about 1/4 of the book is actually about leading troops into battle, (which I think most junior officers feel 99% of their career is going to consist of) And instead is about the politics that surrounds the military, especially right up the top, and how dependent the military is on the government (very often not a good thing)

    Wars,Guns & Votes Democracy in Dangerous places - Paul Collier

    Not actually a military book at all, but if you are joining the military now, I feel there is a damn good chance you are going to be working in a developing country and probably doing some kind of instillation or protection of democracy.

    Forgotten Voices of the Falklands - Hugh McManners

    A step by step run though of the Falklands, but not written as a narrative but first person accounts all worked together to tell the story, very interest since you get the view of people all the way up and down the chain of command.

    Any way just thought these might be worth a look at, I was told to read them by a serving officer and I am happy they were pointed out to me.
  2. Hope you don't mind Sentinel89 going to throw in a book I found of great use,

    The Junior Officer Reading Club, Patrick Hennessey.

    Fantastic read, high tempo, memoir of a Junior officer from his point of view right through Sandhurst, Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Seriously worth a read, not just for finding out more about the Army, training and life in the Army, but genuinely a good read also.

  3. I'll also add one in, Al Qaeda by Jason Burke, very long read read but well worth it in the end. Gives a very good background to Al Qaeda, the Taliban and the rise of many of it's leaders. Also as we will be fighting these buggers for quite a while now it has a lot of information you can bring up in interviews.
  4. Seconded, I read that over the summer. Great read, and has given me some great insights about life in the army, Sandhurst, and a mulititude of other things.
  5. Just ordered the book. There are so many useful books out there, but you just never hear of them.
  6. Some of the best books I've found and read are from the back of recommended texts, for example The Utility of Force (the author escapes me) is a very essential book to read, its very long, very preachy and quite repitive, however it tells you everything you need to know about war and how a modern army works as well as the first officer military academy. I digress, but at the back of the book it gives an extensive list of books based on the subject to read which is where I found Jason Burke. Little tip, always buy from amazon marketplace or ebay, always about 8GBP cheaper!
  7. I have very much enjoyed reading Quartered Safe Out Here - it was recommended to me by a relative who is a serving senior officer. While it is telling of fighting in Burma, and the world has moved on since then, I would wager that the psychology of war doesn't change much. It has some marvelous little insights to POs on platoon dynamics and leadership.
  8. Utility of Force is by General Sir Rupert Smith. It is a staff college read, which doesn't mean you shouldn't but you may do better with some lower order reading.

    Try reading The Anatomy of Courage by Lord Moran (he was a RMO in the trenches in WW1 and Churchill's doc in WW2)

    Junior Officer Reading Club is OK as far as it goes, but I don't really think it is that insightful.