Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Review: The Making of a Navy SEAL by Brandon Webb, John David Mann


Brandon Webb's experiences in the world's most elite sniper corps are the stuff of legend. From his grueling years of training in Naval Special Operations to his combat tours in the Persian Gulf and Afghanistan, The Making of a Navy SEAL provides a rare and riveting look at the inner workings of the U.S. military through the eyes of a covert operations specialist.

Yet it is Webb's distinguished second career as a lead instructor for the shadowy "sniper cell" and Course Manager of the Navy SEAL Sniper Program that trained some of America's finest and deadliest warriors--including Marcus Luttrell and Chris Kyle--that makes his story so compelling. Luttrell credits Webb's training with his own survival during the ill-fated 2005 Operation Redwing in Afghanistan. Kyle went on to become the U.S. military's top marksman, with more than 150 confirmed kills.

From a candid chronicle of his student days, going through the sniper course himself, to his hair-raising close calls with Taliban and al Qaeda forces in the northern Afghanistan wilderness, to his vivid account of designing new sniper standards and training some of the most accomplished snipers of the twenty-first century, Webb provides a rare look at the making of the Special Operations warriors who are at the forefront of today's military.

Explosive, revealing, and intelligent, The Making of a Navy SEAL provides a uniquely personal glimpse into one of the most challenging and secretive military training courses in the world.

I love watching action movies, particularly those sometimes referred to as "war movies" so this sounded interesting to me.

In The Making of a Navy SEAL, the atuhor recounts his life and how he became a Navy SEAL, and eventually part of the group that trained snipers like Chris Kyle.

I quite enjoyed reading this book. Sometimes, memoirs and biographies can get boring even if the subject is interesting. Here, even during the parts that might be considered boring weren't boring to me at all.

Some people think being special ops is cool, and it is, but based on what I read from this book, it's ridiculously hard to be part of elite groups like the SEALs. It's not for a lack of trying, either. There are many factors at work here, and in this regard, I found the book to be enlightening. I'm sure a lot of people who dream of becoming SEALs can pick up a thing or two from this book.

While the book shares a lot of things about SEAL training and life, it is an autobiography, so it's really mostly about Brandon Webb's life. I thought his life story was pretty amazing, and his exploits were admirable. Also, the things he shared about reworking the sniper training course was rather interesting too.

A word of caution, though. I was left quite in awe with this book, so I wanted to learn more about the author. Naturally, I searched on Google. I now kinda wish I hadn't as it now makes me question some of the things I read here. For those who are more curious, just Google his name and then check the news articles.

It's still an entertaining read, though, and I learned a lot about the SEALs. If you want an inside look into SEAL and Navy life, you should give this book a try.

Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Griffin for the e-ARC.


  1. You learn more about the lives of SEALs.
  2. You learn more about the kind of training it takes to become a SEAL.
  3. You gain even more respect for the people who defend your country.


  1. Some of the stories may not be entirely accurate, according to some outside sources.


  1. You or someone you know wants to become a SEAL.
  2. You love war movies.
  3. You love reading autobiographies.




Note: This post contains Amazon and Book Depository affiliate links.

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