Undaunted: The Real Story of America's Servicewomen in Today's Military

Undaunted: The Real Story of America's Servicewomen in Today's Military

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by Tanya Biank
     
 

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As she did so provocatively with military spouses in Army Wives, Tanya Biank gives us the inside story of women in today’s military—their professional and personal challenges from the combat zone to the home front...

Since 9/11, more than 240,000 women have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan—more than 140 have died there, and they currently

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Overview

As she did so provocatively with military spouses in Army Wives, Tanya Biank gives us the inside story of women in today’s military—their professional and personal challenges from the combat zone to the home front...

Since 9/11, more than 240,000 women have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan—more than 140 have died there, and they currently make up fourteen percent of the total active-duty forces. Despite advances, today’s servicewomen are constantly pressed to prove themselves, to overcome challenges men never face, and to put the military mission ahead of all other aspects of their lives, particularly marriage and motherhood. In this groundbreaking, insider’s look at the women defending our nation, Tanya Biank brings to light the real issues—of femininity, belonging to an old boys’ club, veiled discrimination, dating, marriage problems, separation from children, questions about life goals, career trajectories, and self-worth—that servicewomen are facing by focusing on four individual stories.

Brigadier General Angela Salinas, the Marine Corps’ first Hispanic female general, faces the challenge of commanding an all-male institution. Second Lieutenant Bergan Flanagan finds herself on the frontlines in Afghanistan, serving in the same military police company as her husband. As a marine drill instructor, Sergeant Amy Stokley demands the very best from the recruits at Parris Island. And Major Candice O’Brien deals with deployment to Afghanistan, with two young children and a strained marriage back home.

Undaunted is the story of these courageous trailblazers—their struggles, sacrifices, and triumphs in the name of serving the country they love.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Tanya Biank’s Undaunted is a fascinating, eye-opening account of the women in uniform who put their lives on the line every day for the sake of their nation.” —W. E. B. Griffin, author of Black Ops

“Biank analyzes the increasingly important role played by women in the military…An eye-opening account of a military in transition.”—Kirkus Reviews
 
“These engaging glimpses into the life of military women are more than worth reading.”—Publishers Weekly

Undaunted expertly captures the struggle women face in the rapidly changing 21st century military. If you have ever wondered what it takes for women service members to ‘be all they can be,’ you must read this book.” —Siobhan Fallon, author You Know When the Men Are Gone

Publishers Weekly
In her latest, Biank (Army Wives: The Unwritten Code of Military Marriage) sheds light on women who serve in the armed forces. She closely follows the careers of four servicewomen between 2006 and 2011: Brig. Gen. Angela Salinas, the first Hispanic female general in the Marines; 2nd Lt. Bergan Flannigan, a platoon leader married to a man in the same military police company; Sgt. Amy Stokley, a drill instructor for the Marine Corps; and Maj. Candice O’Brien, an officer whose deployment to Afghanistan strains her marriage to a military husband with PTSD. Biank is a skilled biographer, providing contextual snapshots of America’s military with each passing year. Her immersion in each woman’s state of mind makes these stories read almost like a novel, and the clarity of detail, from cadet slang to the social politics on base, reveals the thoroughness of her research. Biank doesn’t offer any groundbreaking conclusions—women are ever more prevalent in the military, but still face challenges in a hypermasculine environment—but these engaging glimpses into the life of military women are more than worth reading for their own sake. Agent: Rafe Sagalyn, Sagalyn Literary Agency. (Feb.)
Kirkus Reviews
Biank (Under the Sabers: The Unwritten Code of Army Wives, 2006) analyzes the increasingly important role played by women in the military. The author, whose first book was developed into the popular TV series Army Wives, follows the military career of four women currently playing a vital role in today's integrated armed forces: Brig. Gen. Angela Salinas, the Marine's first Hispanic female general; 2nd Lt. Bergan Flannigan, a military policewoman in Afghanistan; Sgt. Amy Stokley, who drives recruits at Parris Island; and Maj. Candice O'Brien, who struggles through deployment to Afghanistan with a strained marriage and two children back at home. Biank shows forcefully how this commitment to service still runs up against sexism and prejudice. Three of the four served tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, yet nonsensically, by law, women are still prevented from deployment in combat. Women in the armed forces train to the same standards of excellence as their male colleagues who qualify for combat, and they must maintain the same levels of physical fitness and endurance. In Iraq, when Stokley was a driver, her truck came under attack, and one of her passengers died. Flannigan lost her leg to a roadside booby trap when working to train the Afghan National Police. Biank follows the careers of the four individuals over time, as they advance in their chosen spheres. Salinas chose to continue to serve when she was told by a corporate headhunter that she "would not find what you have in the Marines here….You're not going to find loyalty or camaraderie here like you're used to." An eye-opening account of a military in transition.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780451417985
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
02/04/2014
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
341,590
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
“[Biank] follows the military career of four women currently playing a vital role in today’s integrated armed forces.… An eye-opening account of a military in transition.”
Kirkus Reviews
“UNDAUNTED contains fascinating multiple portraits of the real-life experiences of women in the military, from young enlisted women to a seasoned and celebrated general. Tanya Biank explores these lives with inside knowledge, compassion and wit.”
—Amy Dickinson, Ask Amy columnist and author of The Mighty Queens of Freeville
“To many traditional men, especially those who have known the rigors of military service, the question often is, why would women want to take on this challenging life? By the end of Tanya Biank’s fine book, UNDAUNTED, the answer is clear: because they want to do it, and they can do it.” —Joseph E. Persico, author of Roosevelt’s Centurions
“UNDAUNTED expertly captures the struggle women face in the rapidly changing 21st century military. If you have ever wondered what it takes for women service members to ‘be all they can be,’ you must read this book.”
—Siobhan Fallon, author You Know When the Men Are Gone
“Whether withering under a Marine Drill Instructor’s ‘blasting,’ jumping out of a C-17 with Army Airborne, planning operations along the Afghanistan border, or negotiating the political minefields of being a one-star general, Biank makes the reader feel you are there with four extraordinary, yet very human women who have chosen the profession of arms.”
—Jeff Melvoin, Executive Producer of Army Wives
“UNDAUNTED is truly riveting. The stories remind us that while our service members gracefully bear the burden of protecting our liberties, they sometimes do so at great personal cost.”
—Sue Hoppin, Founder and President of the National Military Spouse Network
“Tanya Biank’s UNDAUNTED is a fascinating, eye-opening account of the women in uniform who put their lives on the line every day for the sake of their nation.”
—W. E. B. Griffin, author of Black Ops
 

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Meet the Author

Tanya Biank is an author and a journalist. Her book, Army Wives, is the basis for Lifetime’s hit series, Army Wives, and she serves as a consultant to the show. Tanya is the daughter, sister, and wife of Army colonels, and during her days as a newspaper reporter she traveled around the world with troops. Her coverage of the Fort Bragg Army wife murders in 2002 led to congressional inquiries and changes in Army policy. Her work has appeared in a number of publications, including The New York Times.

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Undaunted: The Real Story of America's Servicewomen in Today's Military 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An outstanding book - Tanya Biank, knows about Military life first hand - she has lived the Military life since she was born. The women she portrays in her book are real and dedicated to both our country and the branch of service they represent. I looked all of these woman up on the internet after reading UNDAUNTED and found several interesting articles on them.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a thoroughly inspirational look at 4 servicewomen who faced typical issues that females are challenged with in the uniformed services. Profiling a diverse group made the characters relatable.