According to the book description Tattoo Zoo "is a novel that
could only have been written by a veteran of more than three years in the Afghan
War -- as a Green Beret then a civilian embedded journalist. America's longest
war is compressed into a charged forty-six hours with the GIs of the Tattoo Zoo
platoon trapped fighting a fierce Taliban in a nowhere piece of picturesque real
estate called Wajma Valley, as they are left hung out to dry by a politically
correct four-star command hell-bent on prosecuting them for war crimes or just
letting them die in place.
will be taken into the heart and soul of the American soldier -- from private to
general. You will be with the soldiers, you will be with the command, and you
will be swept into the Afghan War on a visceral level of extreme verisimilitude.
If you've been in the war, you will recognize and feel those hours and days and
months, and you will want others to read this to understand what you lived.
you haven't been to the war and only know Afghanistan from blips you've seen on
TV news, Tattoo Zoo will put you there, and you'll know it. No need here to
detail the characters, but you can count on remembering Wolfe and Doc Eberly and
Redcloud and St Claire and Dove and Finkle and Victoria Marshall and a whole
slew more. This is a big novel, and not meant for the casual reader expecting
some throw-away weekend-read thriller. There is nothing pretentious or
artificially artistic or overly intellectual about the language here; just the
opposite, the reading is easy. In fact, there's enough character and story and
conflict here that there's no need for false literary styling meant to impress
other writers and professors of hoity-toity MFA programs. Open it up, give it a
shot, and find again the deep pleasure of an epic war novel."