Wednesday, 28 July 2010

The Junior Officers’ Reading Club by Patrick Hennessey has received a massive media campaign, I think seeing the poster for it at Colliers Wood tube every morning finally made me give in and read the much hyped title. For anyone who has ever read Michael Herr’s Dispatches this book will be a disappointment. Clearly also an admirer of Herr, Hennessey at times, tries to emulate his style but fails to be as searing or well constructed. The book is mediocre at best, sometimes well written, and sometimes revelatory, but lacking in the sharp shocks of Jarhead, Chickenhawk, or Generation Kill. The Junior Officers’ Reading Club is a bit too stylised, filled with pop culture references that detract from the importance of the subject matter, your time would be much better spent reading any of the other titles mentioned.