Service: A Navy Seal at War by Marcus Luttrell Book Review

Service a Navy Seal at WarI was asked to do a book review of the book, Service: A Navy Seal at War by Marcus Luttrell.  Now I don’t normally read books about war.  I guess I just never felt drawn to them but this book looked interesting-

After coming home from a fateful, star-crossed mission in Afghanistan, Marcus Luttrell recuperated and nursed his body and heart back to health. Throughout this time, he wondered why he and others, from America’s founding to today, had been willing to sacrifice everything—including themselves—for the sake of family, nation, and freedom.

Then, in October 2006, Luttrell did what any SEAL would do. He went back to war, this time as part of SEAL Team 5. Luttrell spent six months in the most dangerous city in the world, Ramadi, Iraq, in Anbar Province—Al Qaeda’s self-proclaimed capital in the Middle East. Full of high-intensity urban fighting, the battle for Ramadi was perhaps the most perilous U.S. military undertaking of the Iraq war. The epic battle ran from 2005 into 2007, and the fighting crested at the time Luttrell arrived, in 2006.

 Luttrell fought fiercely, and by the time he left, the city was virtually becalmed. Ramadi was the bookend success to Operation Redwing’s disaster and has been called the greatest victory in the history of U.S. Special Operations forces. In SERVICE, Luttrell walks us through this unbelievable battlefield and also offers new insight about his time in Afghanistan, Operation Redwing, and his awe-inspiring rescue.

Returning home and leaving military life, Luttrell began a quest to understand why a rare few choose to risk their lives to serve their country. Now married and a father, Luttrell also looks at the women who marry SEALs. The book features four women who discuss in their own words the challenges and rewards of being married to a serviceman. Luttrell also shares stories of brave warriors who served with him all over the world, including:


  • · The legendary SEAL master chief who showed him how America’s greatest warriors must put their lives on the line for a mission larger than themselves


  • · The Afghani tribesman who gave him shelter when his hopes were dimming on a distant mountain—and traveled to America five years later to deliver a powerful message


  • · The dedicated Air Force pilots who took part in the epic combat search-and-rescue mission to find his teammates in Afghanistan, searching relentlessly night after night until the last sliver of hope disappeared


  • · The ex-Mormon missionary and his five-man team who flew a helicopter on the impossible midnight rescue mission to take Luttrell off that mountain


  • · The SEAL senior chief petty officer who helped Luttrell kill the stigma of being the lone survivor


  • · The decorated 89-year-old Marine Corps veteran whose example of peace and grace helped Luttrell get past his conviction he wouldn’t see age 40, and past his regrets after going through the crucible of close combat

Reflecting on what it really means to take on a higher calling, about the men Luttrell has seen lose their lives for their country, and on the legacy of those who came and bled before, SERVICE is both a war story for the ages and a moving and heartfelt tribute to all who have served.

Marcus Luttrell became a combat-trained Navy SEAL in 2002 and served in many dangerous special operations assignments around the world. He was deployed to Afghanistan in the spring of 2005. He was awarded the Navy Cross for combat heroism in 2006 by President George W. Bush, and received his discharge from the Navy in June 2007. For more information, please visit

 James D. Hornfischer is the author of the New York Times bestseller Neptune’s Inferno, as well as Ship of Ghosts and The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors, which won the Samuel Eliot Morison Award and was a Main Selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club. He lives in Austin, Texas.

I have to say that I learned a lot about being a Navy Seal through this book.  I realized that I have heard of Navy Seals before and thought I had a general idea of what they did but there was a lot I didn’t know.  This book let me into his world and I got to see about what it is like to be a Navy Seal.  I also found it interesting that he was in Iraq when Ben was the first time and even worked with another unit in Ben’s Brigade.

The author gets into the missions he went on and what happened to some of the men during the missions.  Some of it was hard to read but I thought it was so important to his story.  At the end of the book we get to hear from some of the Navy Seal wives.  I could relate to some of what they were talking about when it came to deployments and supporting someone in the Military.

After finishing this book I wanted to read more about others experiences in the Military and overseas so I will be reading more books like this one in the future.

I was provided a free book for review from Little, Brown and Company. 

(Visited 176 times, 1 visits today)


Tell me what you think!

1 thought on “Service: A Navy Seal at War by Marcus Luttrell Book Review”

Leave a Comment