**REVIEW** Becoming PVT Harmon by Casey Sean Harmon
“I keep reminding myself that the pain is only temporary. I try not to think about the fact that I still have eight weeks left of this torture…”
This is the journal that I kept between the dates of 20 July and 27 September, 2007–the two months that would change my life forever. This book isn’t meant to educate, nor is it meant to “throw anyone under the bus”–which is a term that Soldiers often use to illustrate the act of ratting out a battle buddy. Names have been altered to protect the identity of those mentioned, and any and all sensitive material has been concealed. Nonetheless, this book contains the actual, raw account of a nineteen-year old man who is on a mission to become a U.S. Army Soldier by braving the relentless challenges of Basic Combat Training. This is a behind-the scenes glimpse at things that you’ll never read about in newspapers or see on television. Through my eyes, you will witness fear, excitement, and death. And you’ll learn what separates a Soldier from a civilian. This is perhaps the only such account written by a current active duty Soldier in publication today.
Every Soldier has a story. This is mine.
Let me start off with saying, yes I know this is not the normal book review that you would see on this blog. It is not romance or anywhere close to it. It is ok to think out side of the box every now and then. 🙂 I am a military brat that has lived around bases all my life. I even now live around one of the biggest Army bases out there. My family all works on this base and we have a lot of military friends.
When I was 19 I thought about joining the Air Force. One of the reasons I didn’t was because I had this big fear of what happened during Basic Training. No one really talked about it and what the movies showed freaked me out. That being said I have always been the curious one on what happens during that time. Now we have a SGT in the Army that has published his Basic Training Journal so we can all know first hand what he went through.
I read this book in a matter of hours. I didn’t want to put it down because I honestly had to know what happened during this time. This book is very informative. It is a journal so don’t expect it to read like a normal book. The Author of this Journal gave us a inside look at what he experienced during his time at Basic Training. Something most soldiers or at least none that I have met talk about even when asked. You get to learn some of the Military talk that you sometimes hear on TV such as “being smoked” or “BCG’s” (Birth control glasses). You see what they went through to learn what they know and to become the soldiers that some of us see everyday.
Being a soldier is not a simple thing to become. You must go through some hard days before you get that reward of calling yourself a “Soilder”. During the Authors time he experienced a lot of things from the normal training they go through to people going “AWOL”, people dropping out, and people threatening some crazy stuff. These soldiers go through a lot and this book shows that not all make it to the other side.
“Remember: This is not a sprint, it’s a marathon.”
I honestly enjoyed this book. I loved learning about the things I always wanted to know. I look at Soldiers differently now. They have to learn to be where they are now. It’s not a simple task and is one that everyone earns. They have to remember so many things and have to pass PT tests and get themselves in shape. They also have to learn how to shoot a gun and how to take care of it. The list of what these Soldiers has to learn seems to be endless. Just because you make it to the last day of Basic Training does not mean you will graduate and become the Soldier everyone worked towards. I would love for a Journal about AIT or even one of the first year of a soldier.
About the Author
I am a bestselling author and an active duty Soldier in the U.S. Army. I have studied with the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writer’s Guild, and hold a degree through American Military University. I live with my wife and son wherever the military sends us.
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Other books by this Author
Reign of the Night Creatures (The Everafter Chronicles, #1)
The Earth is a Floating Sphere: A Care-Free Collection of Poems and Stories
The Thousand Year Voyage