I’ve been hungering to read this book for months! I watched all three series of The Sandbaggers early in 2023 and have been trying to read and watch everything I can on the series. This includes a couple of YouTube video essays, most of Greg Rucka’s Queen & Country, and whatever else I could find.
A relative gifted me this book for Christmas, and I was very excited! I’d known about it for a while but couldn’t find it through public or academic libraries. It looked like it was from a university press, it touched on the show and its creator, and I thought I’d be in for a treat.
The book is clearly written with love, and I did enjoy going through it, but it was a real disappointment in other ways. It is poorly organized, poorly sourced, and often poorly written. It feels more like a series of essays on a fan site than a book! It turns out it wasn’t from an academic press so much as from a military-focused popular imprint owned by that press, and it shows.
The author’s editorializing didn’t help much either. He seemed eager to sensationalize the details of Mackintosh’s experience, and he reads Burnside as more of a realistic and necessary hero than the cautionary tale thst I tend to see him as.
In short, I’ve waited a long time for this book and was disappointed by what I got, even if I’d rather have read it than forgone it.
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