'In a series of interconnected stories, Finkel follows a handful of soldiers and their spouses through the painful, sometimes-fatal process of reintegration into American society. The author gives a clear-eyed, frightening portrayal of precisely what it is like to suffer with post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury and what it is like to have the specter of suicide whispering into your ear every day.'
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
'In this incredibly moving sequel, Finkel reconnects with some of the men of the 2-16 — now home on American soil — and brings their struggles powerfully to life . . . Told in crisp, unsentimental prose and supplemented with excerpts from soldiers’ diaries, medical reports, e-mails, and text messages, their stories give new meaning to the costs of service — and to giving thanks.'
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
'Thank You for Your Service is an almost unbearably sad book. It is also one I would urge you to read, to begin to appreciate the appalling toll war takes on troops ... Finkel is an extraordinarily compassionate writer.'
Matthew Ricketson, The Weekend Australian
Every politician must read this book before sending their country’s soldiers into battle.
Dear soldier, before going to war, read this book.
To understand the damage done by war, read this.
'I’m urging everyone I know to give Thank You for Your Service just a few pages, a few minutes out of their busy lives. The families honoured in this urgent, important book will take it from there.'
Katherine Boo, National Book Award–winning author of Behind the Beautiful Forevers
'Thank You for Your Service is one of the best and truest books I have ever read. David Finkel cuts through all the spin, the excuses, the blowhard politics and mind-deadening metrics to discover the cost of war for the soldiers who fight it and the families they come home to. This extraordinary book will piss you off and break your heart. It will shame you and lift you up. It will bend your mind to the reality of an American war that is now well into its second decade.'
Ben Fountain, author of Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, winner of the National Book Critics’ Circle Award and finalist for the National Book Award
'A vivid, fly-on-the-wall account of American soldiers, returned from Iraq, as they and their families struggle to cope with the after-effects of traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.'
Lia Mills, Irish Times 'Books of the Year 2014'
‘Harrowing … heartbreaking … an antidote to the reductive and sentimentalised notions of the heroic that grew up, especially, in the post-9/11 environment.’
The Irish Times
‘A stunningly intimate portrayal of young veterans and their families haunted by a soul-corroding legacy of combat.’
‘Remarkable reporting … An essential history for anyone judging the cost of drawn-out conflicts or the long-term sacrifices of those who serve in them … Masterfully done.’
Geoff Dyer, The Guardian
‘David Finkel tells with novelistic immediacy the stories of some of the soldiers he met when embedded in eastern Baghdad with a US infantry battalion in 2007-8 … Moving.’
‘A remarkable feat of reporting’