Book Review: The Hooligans of Kandahar by Joseph Kassabian

Title: The Hooligans of Kandahar
Author: Joseph Kassabian
Genre: Nonfiction, War Memoir
Age Group: Adult
Rating: 4,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon
Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

During the peak years of the Afghanistan War, a group of soldiers is dropped by helicopter into the remote mountains outside of Kandahar City. Mismanaged and overlooked by command, how they survive is largely up to them. In the birthplace of the Taliban, some men lose their sanity, others their humanity. They are The Hooligans.

Written in the months and years following his deployment, Joseph Kassabian recounts his time in the isolated and dangerous country of Afghanistan. Pulling no punches, The Hooligans of Kandahar is a sobering, saddening, and often sarcastic first-hand account of America’s War on Terror.

In The Hooligans of Kandahar, author Joseph Kassabian talks about his time as a soldier during the war in Afghanistan. A group of soldiers is dropped by a helicopter into the remote mountains outside of Kandahar City. Overlooked by command, and mismanaged, their survival is entirely up to them. Some lose their sanity, some their humanity, but no one leaves unscathed.

The story isn’t sensationalized, nothing like Rambo or half a dozen other action movies. It feels real and raw, and as such, holds a lot more merit. It talks about struggles, not just to survive, but to hang on to the things that make us human. It talks about finding hope when hope is lost, about being strong in the face of perils, about not giving up.

Despite the often grim subject matter, the book still manages to be humorous and witty at times, and it’s an interesting experience to read through this book. Wrong and right, good and evil, books like this one put all of that in perspective. An intriguing rollercoaster of a book that visits almost the entire emotional spectrum.

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