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Description - Wounded Warriors by Mike Sager

Lt. Col. Tim Maxwell prided himself on being a hard-core Marine,a patriotic Devil Dog on his third tour of Iraq. Then his brain was shredded with mortar shrapnel. Today, Maxwell has a large angry scar on the left side of his head. He forgets words, his wife has to read to him, and he drags one foot when he walks. Yet he works twelve-hour days as commander of the Wounded Warrior Barracks at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. For these warriors, Iraq and Afghanistan will never quite be in the past. And the struggle never ends. Other stories in Wounded Warriors depict life inside an L.A. crack gang, ex-pat Vietnam War veterans in Thailand, and five days in Las Vegas with basketball anti-hero Kobe Bryant,all of it captured stylishly by the writer who has been called the beat poet of American journalism."

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780306817359
ISBN-10: 0306817357
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x 19mm)
Pages: 288
Imprint: Da Capo Press Inc
Publisher: The Perseus Books Group
Publish Date: 7-Oct-2008
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions - Wounded Warriors by Mike Sager

Book Reviews - Wounded Warriors by Mike Sager

US Kirkus Review » Esquire writer at large Sager (Deviant Behavior, 2008, etc.) collects some of his bleakest investigative pieces in a downbeat but engrossing volume.The author chronicles the marginalized, forgotten and despised in cool, transparent prose that eschews judgment and melodrama. Horribly wounded young veterans of the Iraq War stagnate in a stateside dormitory, bodies damaged beyond repair, their futures uncertain - yearning, incredibly, to get back to the fight, wistfully watching videos of suicide bombings and firefights on YouTube. Young Puerto Rican boys living in abject poverty devote themselves to fighting pit bulls to the death in a Philadelphia slum. American expats drift through Thailand in a haze of lassitude and cheap sex. A spoiled middle-class kid succumbs to heroin in New York while once-proud gangbangers in Venice, Calif., forgo blood vendettas in favor of staying high on crack. The news is bad even when Sager profiles a group of people with extremely high IQs, finding most of them to be alienated, frustrated and lonely. Ironically, he shows the morbidly obese making a better go of things, dealing with a world scaled for smaller beings with mordant humor and admirable resourcefulness. A few stories fail to maintain interest. A snapshot of Al Sharpton causing trouble at Liberty Island is vivid and funny, but seems out of place here, as does a standard celebrity puff-piece on NBA star Kobe Bryant. A mild look at Hawaiian meth addicts doesn't make much of an impact within the context of the book's other devastating portraits of drug addiction. The collection ends with a strange, self-indulgent account of the author's quest to track down Marlon Brando on the actor's private island. Sager's voice is very different here - personal, full of pain, uncertainty and frustration - but his tale of self-delusion and obsession makes a fitting end-piece for a clear-eyed, upsetting volume whose primary subject is outsider culture and its discontents.Difficult but rewarding reading. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Mike Sager

Mike Sager, a former contributing editor at Rolling Stone and GQ, is a writer at large for Esquire. Many of his stories have been optioned for film. He lives in La Jolla, California.

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