Before reading this book I had heard of Chris Kyle. I have not seen the movie and honestly I didn’t know much about the controversy surrounding this man.
I’m very conflicted on reviewing this book. I almost just threw up my rating and walked away but I tend to forget the books I’ve read and I try and review for myself so that I can remember the book later.
This one. I just don’t know.
I don’t know if they paint Chris Kyle in the movie as he has bared himself in the book. I’m curious enough that I do want to watch the movie now though. In the book Kyle’s words are his own. He is not politically correct, and the writing is not smooth and polished. The one thing it is though is honest. It’s almost as if he is sitting with you telling you his stories.
There are things about him I liked and things I could not wrap my head around.
His unwavering loyalty to his country. He pushes himself to the limits and then goes past them when he needs too. Then I felt that he put that same country ahead of his family time and time again.
I felt bad about leaving Taya. She was still healing from the birth. But at the same time, I felt my duty as a SEAL was more important. I wanted to get back into action. I wanted to go to war.
Then in a few pages he would talk about the pain he feels when one of his “brothers in arms” is hurt or killed and my heart would hurt for him.
He was a complicated man. I’ll give him that. I don’t think I could have taken being in his wife’s place. She has parts of this book told in her voice and honestly it kept me from not liking Kyle completely that he added them in.
Taya would say, “Wait a minute. You’ve been gone for how long? And now you want to come home and be part of this family and make the rules: No sir, because you’re leaving in another month to go back on training.” (This was after he got frustrated with dealing with his young son.
There was a part of Chris Kyle that was completely hot tempered too. He openly puts those parts in the book. He talks about the bar brawls and just sometimes hitting people. I think maybe it was stress relief, I can’t say I have the answers. One thing that caused a storm of problems later on was him including him punching a person he called “Scruff face” and if what happened really took place I’m glad he punched his stupid ass. (Now his estate is in the middle of lawsuits from it)
Another thing about Kyle was that even though he did not want to come off as bragging he couldn’t help but repeatedly mention the fact that he has the highest number of confirmed kills of any sniper. That contradicted himself over and over and got to the point where when it was mentioned I cringed from it.
He was tough though. I don’t think he needed to overly emphasize those facts. He wrote about hell week in the SEALs and that part of the book was excellent. So you knew he was “Badass” without him having to point it out to you.
So all in all. I’m still conflicted with this man and his story. I’m proud that he served his country so valiantly, but I don’t think I could have been a close friend of his. Unfortunately.
With all this good stuff going on, You’d think I was living a fairy tale or a perfect life. And maybe I should be. But real life doesn’t travel in a perfect straight line; it doesn’t necessarily have that “all lived happily ever after” bit. You have to work on where you are going.