Evan Wright is the author of Hella Nation and Generation Kill, the basis of the HBO(R) miniseries for which he served as co-writer. Wright earned his degree in medieval and Renaissance studies from Vassar College, an education he soon put work at Hustler magazine, where he served as "Entertainment Editor." In the late 1990's he began writing feature articles for Rolling Stone focused on youth subcultures, from radical environmentalists to skinheads to sorority girls. His work is characterized by immersion in his subjects' worlds, detailed reporting and dark humor.
After 9/ll he pitched his editor on the idea that since the US military was "basically another youth subculture," he ought to be writing about it. Generation Kill received numerous awards, including the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize, the Los Angeles Times book award, a PEN USA literary prize and the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation's award for "Best History of the Marine Corps."
Wright has covered the wars in both Afghanistan and Iraq. He is the recipient of two National Magazine Awards, one for reporting on the war in Iraq in Rolling Stone and the other for a profile published in Vanity Fair.
Following 24 marines of the First Recon, heading into (where else?) Iraq. Expanding on a Rolling Stone feature. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Wright rode into Iraq on March 20, 2003, with a platoon of First Reconnaissance Battalion Marines-the Marine Corps' special operations unit whose motto is "Swift, Silent, Deadly." These highly trained and highly motivated First Recon Marines were the leading unit of the American-led invasion force. Wright wrote about that experience in a three-part series in Rolling Stone that was hailed for its evocative, accurate war reporting. This book, a greatly expanded version of that series, matches its accomplishment. Wright is a perceptive reporter and a facile writer. His account is a personality-driven, readable and insightful look at the Iraq War's first month from the Marine grunt's point of view. It jibes with other firsthand reports of the first phase of the Iraqi invasion (including David Zucchino's Thunder Run), showing the unsettling combination of feeble and vicious resistance put up by the Iraqi army, the Fedayeen militiamen and their Syrian allies against American forces bulldozing through towns and cities and into Baghdad. Wright paints compelling portraits of a handful of Marines, most of whom are young, street-smart and dedicated to the business of killing the enemy. As he shows them, the Marines' main problem was trying to sort out civilians from enemy fighters. Wright does not shy away from detailing what happened when the fog of war resulted in the deaths and maimings of innocent Iraqi men, women and children. Nor does he hesitate to describe intimately the few instances in which Marines were killed and wounded. Fortunately, Wright is not exposing the strengths and weaknesses of a new generation of American fighting men, as the misleadingly hyped-up title and subtitle indicate. Instead, he presents a vivid, well-drawn picture of those fighters in action on the front lines in the blitzkrieg-like opening round of the Iraq War. 59,000 first printing. Agent, Richard Abate of ICM. (June 21) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
"A pungently written combat narrative and a close-range study of a bunch of twentysomething warriors trying to get a handle on who they are."--Time
"Nuanced and grounded in details often overlooked in daily journalistic accounts...A complex portrait of able young men raised on video games and trained as killers."--The New York Times
"A stellar reporting achievement...Think Black Hawk Down or Michael Herr's Dispatches."--ottawa Citizen
"Shockingly honest."--Entertainment Weekly
"Visceral, sometimes shocking...a brutally honest acount of America's latest generation to experiencethe stark, horrifying realities of warfare."--Boston Herald
"Sidesteps Greatest Generation clichï¿½s to find the unexpected--a self-described 'Marine Corps killer' who listens to Barry Manilow, a corporal who compares a gunfight to Grand Theft Auto: Vice City."--The Washington Post
Wright wrote about [his] experience in a three-part series in Rolling Stone that was hailed for its evocative, accurate war reporting. This book, a greatly expanded version of that series, matches its accomplishment. Wright is a perceptive reporter...a personality-driven, readable and insightful look at the Iraq war's first month from the Marine grunt's point of view...compelling portraits...a vivid, well-drawn picture."--Publishers Weekly
"The language is blue, the blood red, and the action explosive. This may be the book of the Iraqi engagement."--Richmond Times-Dispatch