Customer Reviews for

All In: The Education of General David Petraeus

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

An Education on Life After 9/11

Paula Broadwell does not tell the Petreus story as a formal biography. Instead she chooses a narrative style which follows Petraeus's career in stops and starts. The book's main focus of course is Afghanistan & Iraq, but her choice of pausing for vignettes reveals detai...
Paula Broadwell does not tell the Petreus story as a formal biography. Instead she chooses a narrative style which follows Petraeus's career in stops and starts. The book's main focus of course is Afghanistan & Iraq, but her choice of pausing for vignettes reveals details, both big and small about the man which help the reader to understand Petraeus, the life-long soldier and commander of forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. This makes for a casual, comfortable read which is insightful and moving.

Above all things, the reader will gain an intimate perspective about what Afghanistan is all about and how America's ( and Petreu's ) strategy evolves. The story told here is not what we see or read on TV or in the media. Suddenly, the reader has a new context from which to evaluate the 10 years our nation has been in Afghanistan and how lessons learned by Petraeus throughout his career come to the forefront in Afghanistan. You'll gain a better perspective of the 2010 surge and the difficult task facing American troops, their leadership and the coalition of nations who struggle to carve out a secure Afghanistan.

I come away from this book proud to be an American, grateful to this generation of citizen warriors who serve a higher cause, and thankful that Petraeus remains a civil servant of my nation as the direct of the CIA. A great read which might alter your perceptions of these difficult 10 years since 9/11 puts the American nation, and our troops into dangerous motion.

posted by 5110389 on February 12, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

8 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

Glory Fest to the General

Don't expect revelations unless you know little about this man. If you admire Petraeus, you might get some leadership wisdom out of this book, as long as you can stomach the leader himself. He is one of the best self promoters ever - even Madonna, Obama and Oprah could ...
Don't expect revelations unless you know little about this man. If you admire Petraeus, you might get some leadership wisdom out of this book, as long as you can stomach the leader himself. He is one of the best self promoters ever - even Madonna, Obama and Oprah could learn a few tactics - and there is something to be said in favor of this ability. The reader begins to wonder how much of his time his publicity machine consumed at taxpayers' expense. And was he building a resume from commanding two wars - lots of blood and money as building blocks? He has long insisted he is not running for president, but this book with all its media exposure for its hot-looking female author sends another message for those paying attention. The authors - there are actually two but the hot one gets the camera time - throw in a few critical comments now and again for balance and objectivity. But if the honorable general begins to sound just too honorable, and too good to be true, then there's the big takeaway.

posted by ToolTinker on January 29, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2012

    Glory Fest to the General

    Don't expect revelations unless you know little about this man. If you admire Petraeus, you might get some leadership wisdom out of this book, as long as you can stomach the leader himself. He is one of the best self promoters ever - even Madonna, Obama and Oprah could learn a few tactics - and there is something to be said in favor of this ability. The reader begins to wonder how much of his time his publicity machine consumed at taxpayers' expense. And was he building a resume from commanding two wars - lots of blood and money as building blocks? He has long insisted he is not running for president, but this book with all its media exposure for its hot-looking female author sends another message for those paying attention. The authors - there are actually two but the hot one gets the camera time - throw in a few critical comments now and again for balance and objectivity. But if the honorable general begins to sound just too honorable, and too good to be true, then there's the big takeaway.

    8 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2012

    More journalism than true biography.

    While the book is informative to laymen about the general's contribution to modern Army strategic thinking and tactics on insurgencies, the book is sparce on showing how the policy actually works in practice on the ground. The book's approach is more a report of statistcal success than an illustration of specific examples showing how the general's vision was actually implemented. The book attempts to do so by incorporating stories involving some of the general's proteges, but even these vignettes are not fully developed and seem inserted more as "filler" than as central to the main theme which is the general himself.

    The book is disjointed and not clearly focused. Is it biography? Is it military science? Is it an exposition of political grand strategy?

    As biography, it seems only and mainly to be just an ouline of key events in the general's life, but without any deeper reporting or analysis of his actual life experience or of what actually drives him to achieve the goals he has set for himself.

    The book attempts to cinematic pretensions by presenting flashback-like episodes that alternate events in Afganistan with prior events in Iraq - sometimes without any preparation for the transition in time and place. The author would have done better to have presented the story in proper chronological order without striving for the unnecessary dramatic effect.

    The book ends with the general's retirement from the
    Army and his assuming the CIA DIrectorship. This
    necessarily cuts off the narrative in the middle of the story that is yet to be told.

    The book has only one map illustration of Afganistan. The many references to tactical operations occurring in various parts of that country cry out for additional maps to help the reader understand the events described.

    I was disappointed with this book. It is useful only to catch-up with the overall story arc of the Afganistan war, but I believe the definitive story of the general is still waiting to be written by Dana Priest.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 17, 2012

    When embedded becomes in - bedded, I feel a moral obligation no

    When embedded becomes in - bedded, I feel a moral obligation not to support those who are profitting from it. NO THANKS

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2012

    Anonymous

    I would have loved to read this book, I have admired the general and his rise to the pinnacle of his career. Fast forward to November 2012, David Patreus is a wife cheater and worst of all he cheated with another married woman. I will not contribute any money to a woman who is a home wrecker and whose biography was wtitten between the sheets.
    Disgusting!

    5 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2012

    An Education on Life After 9/11

    Paula Broadwell does not tell the Petreus story as a formal biography. Instead she chooses a narrative style which follows Petraeus's career in stops and starts. The book's main focus of course is Afghanistan & Iraq, but her choice of pausing for vignettes reveals details, both big and small about the man which help the reader to understand Petraeus, the life-long soldier and commander of forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. This makes for a casual, comfortable read which is insightful and moving.

    Above all things, the reader will gain an intimate perspective about what Afghanistan is all about and how America's ( and Petreu's ) strategy evolves. The story told here is not what we see or read on TV or in the media. Suddenly, the reader has a new context from which to evaluate the 10 years our nation has been in Afghanistan and how lessons learned by Petraeus throughout his career come to the forefront in Afghanistan. You'll gain a better perspective of the 2010 surge and the difficult task facing American troops, their leadership and the coalition of nations who struggle to carve out a secure Afghanistan.

    I come away from this book proud to be an American, grateful to this generation of citizen warriors who serve a higher cause, and thankful that Petraeus remains a civil servant of my nation as the direct of the CIA. A great read which might alter your perceptions of these difficult 10 years since 9/11 puts the American nation, and our troops into dangerous motion.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2013

    Hiuy

    Oh yeah.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 18, 2012

    Learn about the most significant general officer since World War II.

    I liked the writing style. Of particular note were the numerous first hand accounts of company and field grade Special Forces officers which document that COIN is not a passing fad. Thus giving great credibility to the work GEN Petreaus (and those who helped him develop and expand what had previously been written on COIN) brought forward and developed into policy. His leadership style uses technology and his own boots on the ground to accomplish the mission.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 25, 2012

    Great book about a great American, by a credible author.

    This book exemplifies the sacrifice and dedication of not only General Petraeus, but others in the military who insure our freedoms which others would take away.

    And to think that Hillary Clinton had the audacity to basically call him a liar in the September 2011 Senate Hearing on Iraq, by saying she had "a willing suspension of disbelief" with regard to his testimony. (New York Sun: Septemher 12, 2007.) This is a great example of the sacrifice men and women who serve in the military have to put up with from those who don't have the foggiest idea about military operations and often show disdain for the institution.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 30, 2012

    Great

    Awesome book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2012

    Cool!

    All in is awesome!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted November 25, 2012

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    Posted December 6, 2012

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    Posted April 6, 2012

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    Posted April 1, 2012

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    Posted November 20, 2012

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    Posted February 17, 2015

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    Posted January 28, 2012

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    Posted November 16, 2012

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    Posted January 26, 2012

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    Posted March 17, 2012

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