The Mullah's Storm
By Thomas Young
W. Young's book, The Mullahfs Storm, is about a battle
for survival, fighting the elements and the enemy in Afghanistan.
The plot starts off when a transport plane, carrying a high-value
Taliban detainee, is shot down in Afghanistan during a ferocious
snowstorm. The rest of the story depicts how the navigator, Major
Michael Parson, and army interpreter, Sergeant Gold rely on each
other to complete their mission and to keep each other alive.
book is a fictional account of surviving in Afghanistan that is
based on reality. Young commented, "I wrote the book
for a few reasons. I wanted to write a compelling story about my
worst fears, the thought of getting shot down and killed since I
am a flight engineer for the Air National Guard in Afghanistan.
Basically my job is to move cargo in and out of the war zone. I
also wanted to give an insight into the people who are fighting
in Afghanistan and Iraq, the motivations and mindset of the people
who serve there. Remember less than 1 % of the American population
has served in those areas."
is a fast paced book that allows the reader to feel they are part
of the battle. The reader is able to experience through Young's
very descriptive narrative the cold, hunger, sleep deprivation,
fear, and mental strength that the characters had to go through
to survive. He commented that the characters, Parson and Gold, ghad
a professional partnership. Major Parson is a country boy who has
an outdoors skill, which he used to help keep himself and Sergeant
Gold alive. Sergeant Gold's skills are the knowledge of the
human terrain, the Afghan culture, and the Pashto language.
descriptive quote in the book describes to the reader what the soldiers
sometimes feel, "Let G-d forgive them I will arrange
the meeting." Young commented that this is a quote he
heard in the military circles and is used from time to time. He
clearly illustrates the challenges and difficulties faced by service
men and women in Afghanistan as well as the professionalism and
the dedication to the mission.
Young is skillfully able to avoid entangling the
characters in a romantic relationship. He wanted to base the relationship
on a professional partnership since, as he notes, git would
not have been realistic for them to form any kind of relationship
because they were in too much pain, too tired, and faced too much
danger. I never gave Sergeant Gold a first name so that she could
keep a certain professional distance.
book is very interesting and informative. Through the plot and the
characters the reader is able to understand what American soldiers
must endure day in and day out while fighting the War on Terror.
G. P. Putnam's Sons / Penguin
September 7, 2010