When the Killer Man Comes: Eliminating Terrorists as a Special Operations Sniper

Paul Martinez, with George Galdorisi. St. Martin’s, $26.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-250-09440-7
In this detail-heavy combat memoir, Martinez, a retired Army Ranger sniper, speaks frankly about his experiences serving in Afghanistan in 2011, when his unit, Task Force Merrill, was dispatched to deal with terrorists affiliated with the Taliban and other organizations. Episodically covering various encounters and missions, Martinez comments on his frustration with the rules of engagement that dictate how American soldiers respond to any given threat, the occasional futility of their actions, and more. His prose ranges from dry and technical, with lengthy explanations of military jargon and parlance, to almost intimate and cinematic when relating battle scenes. One compelling sequence involves Martinez and his team playing cat and mouse with a Chechen sniper—in a fictional account, there would be some sort of dramatic resolution; here, as fits real life, that closure never comes. Martinez’s straightforward, conversational approach works well for the material; part after-action review part personal recollection, it captures the blend of tedium and peril in military life. The confident, thrill-seeking, and patriotic Martinez, who nicknames his M110 rifle “Miss America,” gives readers a revealing look into the mindset of a sniper who’s seen his fair share of combat. Agent: John Silbersack, Trident Media Group. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/27/2018
Release date: 07/17/2018
Genre: Nonfiction
Compact Disc - 978-1-4272-9810-2
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