Thursday, 26 September 2013

Book review : Trident K9 Warriors

I'm a great fan of military autobiographies so when I was leaving Bermuda and found a book token I had been given I was straight down the bookshop to find a book to read on my travels. This title immediately caught my eye and as it was the only copy and was for the exact amount (almost) of the book token I thought it was an omen.

On the face of it the mix of a military autobiography and a book about K9 service dogs would seem an ideal and interesting combination but if you were expecting lots of action and adventure along the lines of the popular works such as 'Bravo Two Zero', 'Sniper One' or even 'Apache', you will be sadly disappointed.

The plus points of the book are that Mike Ritland comes across as a very caring handler and is quite outspoken about negative reinforcement training techniques. For dog trainers it might prove to be an interesting insight into the training of military working dogs. It also gives a general historical perspective of the adaption of the dog from a means of static guarding to an offensive and tactical weapon .

The problem that I had with the book is that it wasn't very well written and jumped around all over the place. There was no logical progression . Some authors have a skeleton of a narrative and do dip into the past when events prompt a flashback type chapter. Mike however swings back and forth from operations to Seal training to dog and puppy training with no apparent structure.

Even the actual war zone encounters don't really get you interested. The whole book is written like your confused and slightly absent minded uncle would talk about his wartime experiences.

Clearly too many people are jumping on the bandwagon  with their Seal Autobiographies in much the same way as the SAS guys did after Andy McNab published his first book.

This book retails at $25.99 in the US and Bermuda and is certainly not worth the money. I'd wait for it to hit the discount and remainder book sellers if you felt you really had to add it to your library.