Black Hawk Down by Mark Bowden

November 8, 2011

What Really Happened at the Battle of Mogadishu?

Mark Bowden, is the author of many books including his most recent Best Game Ever, and the book I read, Black Hawk Down. Black Hawk Down was a extremely in depth book about war. More specifically “The First Battle of Mogadishu.” The intensity and the gruesome details throughout the book definitely changed my view of some of the battles the USAF fights. Bowden describes the difference between the Army Rangers and Delta Force, who were willing to fight - but not as willing to die as the Somali Soldiers. The book also tells some of the brutal injuries inflicted to soldiers on both sides. Before reading this book; it almost seemed like war a walk in the park, but missions going bad like this say otherwise.

This book, was told so much like a novel at some points, it shocked me that it was non-fiction. Black Hawk Down was written in third person limited omniscient, but is not extremely limited. Most characters in the book are completely exposed while others aren’t. It was interesting to me that with all these specific details it could be completely non fiction; but in fact, it is. I believe that Bowden’s target audience was more adults, and not kids. this is because of all the gruesome details, and for some younger readers, could be harder to understand.

There is a large amount people, that because they maybe haven't read or seen what war truly is, think it's peachy and fun. Bowden even stresses that Rangers that haven't fought yet complain that sitting behind a desk and not fighting isn't what they worked for. In this book, many get their chance to prove themselves in battle. And they all wished that is was over. These men are part of the strongest military in the world - and they are scared. This proves that even though it may be in a way necessary, and that many of us might fight for the US military, war isn't something to be proud of. For some people, that is a reason I encourage you to read this book. I honestly liked Black Hawk Down, I know the book can show those of us that don't know what war is like, the cruel details of it. Black Hawk Down is a classic non-fiction that will hook you to read more, just like your favorite novel.

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