Bristol's Bastards: In Iraq with the 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry of Minnesota's National Guard [NOOK Book]

Overview

Minnesota’s toughest farm boys take on Iraqi insurgents
in one of the most irreverent and outrageous memoirs to come out of the war

 

Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry Regiment of the Minnesota National Guard, composed in large part of farm kids from the Midwest who could replace a tank track on the side of the road using nothing but a crescent wrench, Zippo lighter, and a two-by-four, fought ...

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Bristol's Bastards: In Iraq with the 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry of Minnesota's National Guard

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Overview

Minnesota’s toughest farm boys take on Iraqi insurgents
in one of the most irreverent and outrageous memoirs to come out of the war

 

Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry Regiment of the Minnesota National Guard, composed in large part of farm kids from the Midwest who could replace a tank track on the side of the road using nothing but a crescent wrench, Zippo lighter, and a two-by-four, fought alongside the Marine Corps in Anbar province through the deadliest period of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Bravo Company earned the nickname “Bristol’s Bastards” after USMC Colonel George Bristol, commanding officer of the I MEF Headquarters Group, adopted this band of fierce warriors as one of his own. Specialist Nick Maurstad, a member of Bristol’s Bastards, brings to life the experience of fighting in Iraq, kicking down doors, dodging IEDs, battling insurgents in the small towns surrounding Fallujah, and trying to help one another survive in the deadliest place on earth.

 

Maurstad lost three friends in Iraq, and a friendly demeanor belies his own frustrations. He has intense memories, such as disarming an insurgent who was raising a handgun to shoot while in bed with his wife and children. . . . His mental hurdle for now is visiting the graves of the friends he lost.

St. Paul Pioneer Press,

October 28, 2007

 

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Editorial Reviews

St. Paul Pioneer Press
Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry Regiment of the Minnesota National Guard, composed in large part of farm kids from the Midwest who could replace a tank track on the side of the road using nothing but a crescent wrench, Zippo lighter, and a two-by-four, fought alongside the Marine Corps in Anbar province through the deadliest period of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Bravo Company earned the nickname "Bristol's Bastards" after USMC Colonel George Bristol, commanding officer of the I MEF Headquarters Group, adopted this band of fierce warriors as one of his own. Specialist Nick Maurstad, a member of Bristol's Bastards, brings to life the experience of fighting in Iraq, kicking down doors, dodging IEDs, battling insurgents in the small towns surrounding Fallujah, and trying to help one another survive in the deadliest place on earth.

Maurstad lost three friends in Iraq, and a friendly demeanor belies his own frustrations. He has intense memories, such as disarming an insurgent who was raising a handgun to shoot while in bed with his wife and children. . . . His mental hurdle for now is visiting the graves of the friends he lost.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781616732325
  • Publisher: MBI Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 11/15/2008
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 924,136
  • File size: 17 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author


Nick Maurstad was a member of the Minnesota National Guard's Bravo Company, which by early 2007 was the most senior unit on Camp Fallujah. Bravo Company discovered a torture house and rescued its victims; helped reduce the amount of IEDs and indirect fire attacks by more than seventy percent; and captured twenty-six known terrorists, including seven al Qaeda operatives in one operation. The unit earned high esteem across Camp Fallujah because of the safety and security they brought to the immediate area, a dramatic contrast to the rest of Iraq.

Darwin Holmstrom has written or co-written many books, including the best-selling Camaro Forty Years, Muscle: America's Legendary Performance Cars, Billy Lane Chop Fiction: It’s not a Motorcycle, Baby, It’s a Chopper, and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Motorcycles.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 9 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 19, 2009

    A Story That Needs Telling, But Very Poor Writing

    First let me say that no person has a higher respect for the men and women who serve in our nation's military than I have. Our troops have sacrificed so much and for so long in the defense of this nation that I can't express strongly enough my gratitude for their service. They've taken the fight to a savage and brutal enemy who thinks nothing of killing innocent civilians as a part of their insane ideology, and our forces have protected and saved American lives by their courage. Our men and women are the best - that's the only way it can be put.<BR/><BR/>With that having been said, I must say that the story this book has to tell is vitally important and needed to be told. I just wish it could have been told better. When I bought the book, I didn't realize that practically every chapter, and seemingly every paragraph, would be littered with obscenities. There is a time and place and a context for such raw language, such as in describing a high-intesity situation or the thoughts running through a mind that is over-stressed with grief or anger or remorse, but not to the degree found in Bristol's Bastards. It seemed like F-bombs and S-bombs were on every page. In many places the writing was more like something you'd read on an unmoderated blog - not in historical literature. <BR/><BR/>The author certainly has every right, and in fact I believe every reason to document his experiences in Iraq. I do however think the writing needs a much more thorough editing, since I'd want people to read it through to the end, and not be run-off by a barrage of profanity.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 20, 2009

    truth..

    The author tells exactly how it is. There's too much of a stigma attached to servicemembers feeling as though they must be silent about what goes on overseas, because we "cannot handle it" in the states. Well, we are all americans and we are in it together, so I personally applaud Mr. Maurstad for his bravery overseas, and as well as with writing his book. There was vulgar language used, but what servicemember doesn't pick up a little of that anyway? At least we are being informed, rather then kept in the dark, and I appreciate that he holds nothing back.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2013

    I don't need to read the book, I lived it...

    First and farmost there's not a day that goes by I don't think, or relive my experiences in Fallujah with B co 2-136, but as a soldier I would do it again if I was promised our kids, our families would never have to live in the fear the Iraqi's did day in day out. I would watch kids in the fields and motar rounds would drop around them, and that was everyday living for them, for the Americans who've never had to make any sacrifices for this country... Honar the freedom you have, if it were up to them we would all be living 9/11 everyday here in America.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Raw and Real

    I read over some of the reviews and after doing so I had to comment on this book as well. I'm not critizing anyone who commented, so please no one think I'm singling anyone out. With this current war we are seeing more and more soldiers writing about their experience which I think is great. This war has opened up a whole new type of warfare and our men and women overseas have been through experiences much different then those of lore.

    I come from a military family, however I'm not in the military myself. My ex is actually the one who suggested the book in an effort to better understand what he went through, especially because he was an infantryman with the Red Bulls. I found the book very insightful and for me eyeopening. It gave the news reposts a whole new prospective that was a refreshing welcome. I'm glad I listened and broke down and bought the bought, it's quite dog earred now.

    When it comes to Maurstad's writing I look at it this way: you have a soldier who entered the military not to become a writer, but to become a soldier. Maurstad, who does at time appears as a very angry individual, does not have any professional writing experience. I think his writing style is actually what made the story much more real to me. If you haven't read the book go into it knowing that Maurstad is not a professional writer. Its a fast read and interesting one. I think it's great that Maurstad went for it and wrote the book. It's nice to have a view outside major media.

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  • Posted September 8, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Intrigued!

    I originally purchased the book as a Christmas present for my youngest son who was serving with the Air Force in Balad, Iraq, at the time. However, I decided to read it myself before mailing it off because of much publicity in my hometown newspaper as well as personally knowing the family of Corey Rystad, one of the Guardsman who was killed in Iraq. Needless to say, I was intrigued! I could not put it down until I had finished reading it. Yes, it is a candid memoir of the time Nicholas Maurstad spent in Iraq. Therefore, it does have profanity as well as some topics that may be embarassing to some readers. But, that's the way it is in times of war. It is never pretty and Nicholas tells it like it is; even the incompetence of some of the Guard trainers. Only when their unit was put under the wing of Marine Colonel Bristol (hence the name Bristol's Bastards) did they become skilled soldiers. Parts of the book are funny, some are sad, and others are enlightening. Basically, Nicholas tells it like it was. Throw in some farm boy ingenuity and you can see how our servicemen were able to turn things around in Iraq. No, Nicholas didn't have great literary talent at the time of writing this book but I think he did quite well in spite of it. Therefore, I highly recommend this book to anyone who appreciates the sacrifices our servicemen have made for our country and our freedom.

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  • Posted July 11, 2009

    find other books

    Poorly written with more of a stream of consciousness than thoughtful insight, this book tells of an angry kid who was that way before serving, was angry in the Army, and is still angry. Anger can be an interesting viewpoint but isn't used here. The writer gives no real introspective idea of what an enlisted man goes through, instead just talks about superficial and meaningless times he devalues himself and others. Most of the book is an expanded set of disconnected thoughts. He skips over the most touted part of the book (capturing Hassan) and instead spends time being angry at people's supposed incompetence without supplying any evidence or support for his reasons. He shows little understanding of what went on around him or interest in telling about events other than drinking and being angry. The only thoughtful section is when he remembers his friends that died. Most or all of his living friends were not spared embarrassment or honored by this story.

    I served as an enlisted man in the guard and was embarrassed by his story. Yes, young men left alone with boredom in a place that is inhospitable will do stupid things. But they also do more brave work. I am certain that the author also did many brave things but this story is all about the stupid things and nothing of merit. There were honorable people and people who made poor decisions in Iraq. This book tells none of that.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2010

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    Posted May 30, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2008

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