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“American Sniper” by Chris Kyle: Summative Essay Essay

The book I chose for the summative essay assignment was “American Sniper” by Chris Kyle. This book is about the courageous and thrilling memoir of the most lethal sniper in U.S. military history. With over 100 documented kills during his four tours of duty, Chris Kyle has shed light on the dangerous brave life of a sniper. During his four tours of duty in the Iraq war he has come close to death and saved countless lives. He changed a lot from just being a country boy and became what he describes as a man. The war really changed his perspective on his civilian life. The significance of the Iraq war was to help free the Iraqi civilians of their dictator, Saddam Hussein, and the radical Islamic insurgents who terrorized the Iraqi’s after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

The time period this book is set in is right before 9/11 and during the Iraq war (1999-2009). As he grows up in Odessa, Texas he grow interested into being a ranch manager. By becoming a ranch hand he found himself in the state of Colorado where he enlisted for the Navy a second time. He joined the Navy in February 1999 and trained to be a Navy SEAL in Coronado, Calif. The rugged challenging training he had to go through to become a Navy SEAL really showed him that it isn’t easy being a solider and that he had to work extremely hard and not give into the powerful temptation of quitting. The tough training conditions and activities really molded him into one of the best U.S. sniper of all time. Nothing he could have imagined would come close to the gruesome scarring experience of war. After serving in the war torn country of Iraq you come out a different person and as he puts it “Continually going to war, you gravitate to the blackest parts of existence.”

Chris Kyle grew up in small towns in north-central Texas. Having loved the ranch lifestyle he became a professional bronco rodeo rider. Then at the end of his freshman year at TSU a bronco flipped onto him breaking his ribs, dislocating his shoulder, a bruised lung and kidney ending his career. After being rejected before from the Marines, he enlisted for the Navy and was turned down at first but then received an unexpected call from the recruiter little did he know that call would change his life forever. After surviving and passing all of the training needed to become a SEAL, Chris was placed in SEAL Team 3 along with his friends from training, Marc Lee and Ryan Jobs. He married Taya and had a son, they met while he was off base. He finished his 10 years of military service as a CPO and receiving a silver and bronze stars as well as other awards for his contributions as well as over 100 kills.

Chris received his nick name of “The Devil or Ramadi” given to him by the insurgents when he was deployed there. They knew he was a deadly sniper and were terrified of him up to the point of placing an $80,000 bounty on him. In Sadr City he made a 1.9 km shot and killed a rocket launcher holding insurgent. He deployed to locations such as Fallujah, Baghdad, and Ramadi. “Just then, an RPG hit the outside wall right near me. Some of the building smashed into my face, giving me a couple of beauty marks and temporary tattoos courtesy of the insurgency.” He describes his close encounter with death in Baghdad after getting off the phone with his wife. “Taya had turned on the television…I saw smoke pouring out of the World Trade Center in New York…an airplane flew right into the side of the second tower.” He now describes the horrible time when he found out the depressing news of the terrorist attack on the U.S.

If I were to rate this book on a scale from 1-10, this book would defiantly earn a 10. This book for me was extremely inspiring how he never gave up even when given the chance, even when all the odds were stacked against him he stayed strong and continued on. He really explained the life of a soldier, and not the usual way we look at soldiers but showed a different side to them, one only they could fully understand. As well as the fact that he let his wife write a few pages here and there explaining the difficulties of being a SEAL’s wife really showed that he wanted the reader to fully understand a SEAL’s life and so on.

The only way you would really enjoy reading this book would be if you like reading war books and have an interest in the military. This book is a great book as well if you are looking for a book that you will absolutely not want to put down it and he explains everything that is going on with vivid details. Another pro to this book is that he transitions from all the events in an orderly way so you will never get lost and have to re-read. I do not dislike any aspect of this story at all, personally it was put together just right to create an exceptionally great war memoir.

Overall this book was truly one of my favorite war books I have ever read. It has been crafted carefully by a man who has been through a lot in his life and has stayed strong through the worst times and has enjoyed the best times of his life. Though Chris is no longer with us I am positively sure he would have continued to be the great man that he was, and his legacy will always live on. Christopher Scott Kyle truly was the most lethal U.S. sniper.

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