The best black ops memoirs

Stephen Templin Author Of Seal Team Six: Memoirs of an Elite Navy Seal Sniper
By Stephen Templin

The Books I Picked & Why

No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden

By Mark Owen, Kevin Maurer

Book cover of No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden

Why this book?

Mark Owen gives a rare look into his career as an assaulter in the US Navy’s SEAL Team Six—the men at the tip of the spear who killed the most notorious terrorist ever. Rich in detail, the reader lands with the Team in Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan in the darkness and busts through his door. Owen’s story grabs you tightly and doesn’t let go—a thrilling read and one for the history books.


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American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History

By Chris Kyle, Scott McEwen, Jim DeFelice

Book cover of American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History

Why this book?

Nicknamed al Shaitan, “The Devil,” by his enemies, US Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle takes out 109 insurgents in Iraq. The reader journeys with Kyle from shooting in Texas to sniping in Fallujah. He gives valuable insights into weapons, urban sniping, and fighting insurgents—while telling his incredible story. Adrenaline runs high, but tragedy and strain strike hard. Intensely personal, his memoir is unputdownable.  


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The Reaper: Ghost Target: A Sniper Novel

By Nicholas Irving, A.J. Tata

Book cover of The Reaper: Ghost Target: A Sniper Novel

Why this book?

Army Special Operations Direct Action Sniper Nick Irving hunts for “The Chechnian” in Afghanistan in this action-packed memoir of war, comradery, and sacrifice. The reader endures sniper training before deploying to Afghanistan. Irving’s numerous insights into sniping at night in mountainous terrain blend smoothly with his priceless memoir. On each hit, we feel him push aside his excitement and fear to take that next critical killing shot…


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See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism

By Robert Baer

Book cover of See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism

Why this book?

Top CIA case officer Robert Baer takes us on missions with him to destroy terrorist networks in the Middle East. For most of the book he operates fast and furious—until he runs into a different kind of enemy—CIA political correctness, careerism, and more. His book strikes home the importance of spies with boots on the ground and how technical gizmos and doodads can’t replace that. Suspenseful and spooky, this memoir will haunt the reader long after turning the last page. 


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Marine Sniper: 93 Confirmed Kills

By Charles Henderson

Book cover of Marine Sniper: 93 Confirmed Kills

Why this book?

This isn’t actually a memoir, but it reads like one. In the Vietnam War, Marine Gunnery Sergeant Carlos Hathcock hunts and is hunted. With him, the reader stalks a Viet Cong general, a sniper, and others through the jungles and mountains of Southeast Asia. The North Vietnamese People’s Army of Vietnam put a bounty on Hathcock, calling him the “White Feather.” It’s difficult to imagine today’s American snipers or black ops without the influence of this man. His story is legendary.


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