Saturday, January 02, 2016

Book Review: Gunny's Rules by R. Lee Ermey

With a new year dawning, it's a good time to read motivational books. It's probably a great time to catch up on book reviews of motivational books.

I read Gunny's Rules: How To Get Squared Away Like A Marine several months ago, along with 3 other books on mindset and motivation, including Mike Cernovich's "Gorilla Mindset".

Most of you know R. Lee Ermey from his film work, especially his role as Gunnery Sgt Hartman in Full Metal Jacket; probably his most iconic role. He's had various other roles over the years, both small and large. His first movie role was a helicopter pilot in Apocalypse Now. He's also played House's father in House, M.D. and the Janitor's father in Scrubs.

Gunny's Rules is a very quick read. I read it in an afternoon, and I'm not a very fast reader. It probably takes between 3-5 hours straight through.

R. Lee Ermey was a poor farm boy from the midwest who joined the Marine Corps with few other options. He suffered an injury in Vietnam and was medically retired just past the 10 year mark. Although he retired as a Staff Sgt, the Marine Corps promoted him to Gunny in 2002 thanks to his work. He managed to turn his time as a Marine into an entire career. He is also a board member of the NRA and a product spokesman for quite a few products.

The book is divided into 10 chapters. Each one is written on a theme such as "Fall In" (Ch 1), "Be Prepared" (Ch 2), and "Major Malfunctions" (Ch 6). Chapter 9 is the Gunny's rants on various things such as the requirement to wear seatbelts in a Jeep, and Chapter 10 is the Gunny's recommendations on products such as Victory Motorcycles.

Each chapter contains anecdotes from the Gunny's past and instructions on squaring yourself away. It ends with bullet points and comments, then finally quotes on the topic.

R. Lee Ermey was good friends with Stanley Kubrick, and anecdotes about his work on Full Metal Jacket make up a good part of the book. They were very enlightening. He was not supposed to play a role in Full Metal Jacket, but his preparation and refusal to give up got him the role of Hartman.

If you're looking to start 2016 with a bang. Gunny's Rules is a solid, quick, and amusing read that will help you hit the ground running.

Gunny's Rules: How to Get Squared Away Like a Marine
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