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Brave Deeds von David Abrams
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Brave Deeds (2017. Auflage)

von David Abrams (Autor)

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284670,200 (4.6)1
"From Fobbit author David Abrams, Brave Deeds is a powerful novel of war, brotherhood, and America. Spanning eight hours, the novel follows a squad of six AWOL soldiers as they attempt to cross war-torn Baghdad on foot to attend the funeral of their leader, Staff Sergeant Rafe Morgan. In an inhospitable landscape, these men recall the most ancient of warriors while portraying a cross section of twenty-first century America--sometimes strong, sometimes weak, but subject to the same human flaws as all of us. Drew is reliable in the field, but unfaithful at home. Cheever, overweight and whining, is a friend to no one--least of all, himself. Specialist Olijandro, or O, is distracted by dangerous romantic thoughts of his ex-wife. Fish's propensity for violence is what drew him to the military and could be a catalyst for the day's events. Park is the quiet one, but his quick thinking may make him the day's hero. And platoon commander Dmitri "Arrow" Arogapoulos, is stalwart, yet troubled with questions about his own identity and sexuality. As the six march across Baghdad, their complicated histories, hopes, and fears are told in a chorus of voices that merge into a powerful portrait of the modern war zone and the deepest concerns of us all, military and civilian alike. Moving, thoughtful, funny, and smart, Brave Deeds is a gripping story of combat and of brotherhood, and an important addition to the oeuvre of contemporary war fiction"--… (mehr)
Mitglied:ayaeckel
Titel:Brave Deeds
Autoren:David Abrams (Autor)
Info:Grove Press, Black Cat (2017), 256 pages
Sammlungen:Deine Bibliothek
Bewertung:*****
Tags:Iraq

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Brave Deeds von David Abrams

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4.5 stars. I read this on a plane trip from Portland to Atlanta, then finished it late at night at home. It’s been compared to Ben Fountain’s BILLY LYNN’S LONG HALFTIME WALK, for good reason, but it is working it’s own narrative magic. Read this one, friends. ( )
  ChristopherSwann | May 15, 2020 |
I am going to apologize to Mr. Abrams right now because there is no way I will ever be able to do Brave Deeds justice in this review. This “day in the life” story reminds me of The Things They Carried. It has a similar feel to it in the short, vignette-like chapters that bounce from soldier to soldier, past, and present. One of the reasons it is so powerful is that the U.S. still has soldiers in the Middle East; these six soldiers could be your brother, son, husband, father right now. It is a sobering thought while reading.

What Brave Deeds does more than anything is to show how young our soldiers are and how they are not heroes. They are simply six men who are doing their job in an unbearable situation. The death of their leader is the proverbial straw on the camel’s back. They are not attempting any sort of heroism. They are not hoping to make a statement or inspire policy changes through their temporary desertion. They just want to say good-bye to the one person in the military they felt cared about them as individuals.

How they get into the dangerous predicament of having to hump it all over Baghdad is rather comical if it were not also so frightening. Their gaffes show their humanity and confirm that they are not professional soldiers. Mr. Abrams does a great job showing how ingrained their training is, which serves them well as they cross the city on foot, but they are young and each distracted by his own thoughts and desires. The mistakes they do make end because of their youth and because of the natural distractions that come about because of their youth are understandable even as they end up having lasting repercussions not just them on them but for the Iraqi citizens as well.

The six soldiers harbor no doubts as to the dangers they face with every step further into the city. Nor do they harbor doubts as to their own lack of heroism. True, there is an innate machismo they exude due to their training and their weapons and their camaraderie, but as we see into the minds of each of them and get to know them, we understand that they are nothing more than frightened young men trying to find comfort among the danger. These men encompass the gamut of society and are a great example of the melting pot that is the military.

Mr. Abrams’ writing is superb. Sparse and powerful, it establishes the tone of the novel so well that readers feel the same sense of danger, fear, and urgency as the soldiers do. You can feel the intense heat rise from the pages as you march behind them on their way to the funeral. Every shadow mentioned, every figure they pass on the street, every blind corner they must turn fills you with a sense of dread. It is an intense experience, made all the more so because you find yourself caring about the men. They may not be perfect, in fact one or two are downright nasty, but you get behind their cause and cheer them on their journey. The overwhelming concern as to the eventual success of their mission fuels your reading experience with suspense and dread, and you come away feeling a greater appreciation for and sympathy with all soldiers everywhere. Brave Deeds is an impressive tour de force that gives a proper voice to modern soldiers all over the world just trying to do their job and survive.
  jmchshannon | Sep 6, 2017 |
BRAVE DEEDS by David Abrams follows a squad of six men who make it their mission, despite orders not to, to go the funeral of their fallen leader, Staff Sergeant Morgan. Being AWOL and not having their radio forces them to band together in ways they didn't even know they could so they can complete their mission of making to their sergeant's funeral.
Abrams writes the book in an odd style; its written from the perspective of all six soldiers mashed together into a singular thought. While unique and interesting at times, at other times I wanted to read how the individuals felt about a situation or in a moment, not how the collective reacted. Because the singular perspective of the more likable characters isn't displayed, it's harder to sympathize with their tough decisions along the way. The story carries these men through dangerous areas providing action and tension that provides excitement. There are no pulled punches on describing the harsh realities of war and while I appreciated the candidness, it could be tough for some readers to work through.
While I had a tough time connecting personally to these men, I enjoyed their mission and admired the purpose of honoring their fallen leader, who was a father figure to most of them. BRAVE DEEDS reminds the reader of the grim conditions of war and creates appreciation for the non military lives most of us lead.
Thank you to Grove Atlantic, David Abrams, and Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! ( )
  EHoward29 | Aug 3, 2017 |
When our son threw over his obsession with dinosaurs for WWII and later 20th c wars I found myself entering new territory.

For someone who couldn't stand to watch violence, whose high school classes didn't even get to WWI, I found myself watching war movies and reading a lot of war books. At first, our son liked The Longest Day and To Hell and Back. As he grew so did his sophistication. In his mid-teens, he read the book and watched the movie Black Hawk Down over and over. Which meant so did I.

My son's interests expanded my understanding of the world and politics--and human nature.

"Tell brave deeds of war."
Then they recounted tales,--
"There were stern stands
And bitter runs for glory."

Ah, I think there were braver deeds.
Stephen Crane, The Black Riders and Other Lines

The title of David Abrams' new book Brave Deeds comes from a poem by Stephen Crane. What are these deeds that are braver than the 'bitter runs for glory'?

Told they could not attend the memorial service for their leader Staff Sergeant Morgan, six soldiers in Iraq decide to go AWOL. They had the mission all planned out: 'Borrow' a HUMMER, drive to the base where the service was being held, and return to face the consequences.

If something can go wrong it will. They did not count on the HUMMER breaking down in one of the most dangerous sectors of Bagdad. Or a grueling hike through hostile territory without even a map that in their panic they forgot to bring.

The trek takes eight hours, encountering people who sidetrack them into conflicts. But they stick to their mission, determined to pay honor to their fallen leader, "one team, one fight, one brotherhood," hopefully alive and intact at the end.

This journey tale brings the men into danger, but we also learn that their inner life journey is just as tortured. Each soldier's inner dialogue is heard in alternating chapters, without identification. Readers learn the men's fears and insecurities and pain, how they see each other, what has motivated them to go on this arduous, dangerous journey, and what Sgt. Morgan meant to them.

One soldier admits they are not 'great men risking death on a brave mission'. No, we are 'Fucked up and flawed' he thinks.

Morgan seen through the eyes of his men is a vivid character. Some saw his death as heroic, those who believed in "the First Church of Bush". Others were there for the paycheck, his death just sad and senseless. His death affected each one, and they now they risk their lives to honor him.

Reading the novel I was sometimes disturbed, sometimes I laughed. I felt compassion and revulsion, concern and sorrow. At the end I was moved.

The novel was inspired by a true story, as Abrams discusses here.

I received a free book in exchange for a fair and unbiased review. ( )
  nancyadair | Jul 23, 2017 |
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"From Fobbit author David Abrams, Brave Deeds is a powerful novel of war, brotherhood, and America. Spanning eight hours, the novel follows a squad of six AWOL soldiers as they attempt to cross war-torn Baghdad on foot to attend the funeral of their leader, Staff Sergeant Rafe Morgan. In an inhospitable landscape, these men recall the most ancient of warriors while portraying a cross section of twenty-first century America--sometimes strong, sometimes weak, but subject to the same human flaws as all of us. Drew is reliable in the field, but unfaithful at home. Cheever, overweight and whining, is a friend to no one--least of all, himself. Specialist Olijandro, or O, is distracted by dangerous romantic thoughts of his ex-wife. Fish's propensity for violence is what drew him to the military and could be a catalyst for the day's events. Park is the quiet one, but his quick thinking may make him the day's hero. And platoon commander Dmitri "Arrow" Arogapoulos, is stalwart, yet troubled with questions about his own identity and sexuality. As the six march across Baghdad, their complicated histories, hopes, and fears are told in a chorus of voices that merge into a powerful portrait of the modern war zone and the deepest concerns of us all, military and civilian alike. Moving, thoughtful, funny, and smart, Brave Deeds is a gripping story of combat and of brotherhood, and an important addition to the oeuvre of contemporary war fiction"--

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