In Sebastian Junger’s latest non-fiction adventure War, the author spends parts of 15 months embedded with American soldiers in one of the deadliest locations in Afghanistan. This is not a history of Afghanistan, not a commentary on US foreign policy, or a romanticized look at combat. Politics and culture are far removed from the daily lives of the young men Junger observes and emotionally bonds with in the Korengal Valley. Junger did almost everything with the 2nd Battalion: he patrolled with them, went through fire fights, ate military rations, interviewed them during the down times, and almost died with them. Between the harrowing battle scenes and the emotionally charged interviews, War is a raw and completely engaging look at modern warfare.
While in Afghanistan, Junger and photographer Tim Hetherington filmed hours of both battles and down time. If you liked War, check out the documentary film Restrepo or the photography book Infidel.