BOOK CLUB: Battle Born

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Battle Born is labelled a Damien Hunter action novel, and given the title, I assume is the first in a series from Nathan Best. However, it stands alone and ends in a satisfactory manner. It is a novel aimed squarely at action readers.

Damien Hunter is a veteran soldier, now operating as a contractor for the Taipan Organisation. His current contract has him in Afghanistan, working with two long-standing colleagues.

Damien and his team are tasked with protecting a Dutch mission aiming to destroy an Afghan warlord. Unfortunately, the mission is deeply flawed, and the warlord has also engaged foreign contractors to fight on his behalf.  Damien and his team soon have to abandon the original mission plan in a desperate attempt to survive.

Now, I’ll say right up front that I didn’t particularly enjoy this novel. That is largely because these kinds of action novels don’t strongly appeal to me. The plot consists of blowing things up and killing people, with virtually no overarching story or characterisation.

However, for those who are looking for a straight-action novel, this will probably fit the bill. Once the action gets properly started, it’s non-stop through to the last page. It is well choreographed, complex but easy to follow.

There is a lot of technical detail about the equipment characters use, which gives the action a sense of authenticity and convincing reality. This will very much appeal to the kind of reader who wants to know how things work and exactly what equipment was used.

There is very little in the way of a story beyond that of the mission. There is no sense of the broader purpose of the war, or of anything that pertains to the world beyond this war. This makes it an easy read for those simply interested in the action.

These men don’t seem to exist outside this theatre of war. Again, that keeps the focus on the action and this one mission.

The tagline (“a Damien Hunter action novel”) suggests that there may be more to come. Certainly, although the novel has a satisfying conclusion, it could also be opened up to a sequel.

This is one for readers looking for a straightforward, fast-moving action story with few distractions.

A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading Battle Born by Nathan Best. You can read their comments below, or add your own review.

7 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: Battle Born

  1. Battle Born, a Damien Hunter Novel written by Nathan Best is an action packed, full of danger, suspenseful fictional story of a mission in Afghanistan.
    Damien Hunter, an Air Force special forces operator turned contractor is employed by the secretive Taipan Organisation which supply soldiers for hire to undertake missions no one else would take on.

    Damien’s three man team ,Taipan One Six is sent on a mission in Afghanistan. They are there to support a Dutch Operation.
    Everything goes wrong!

    It is so action packed and suspenseful as you follow Damien.
    Will they or at least Damien make it out alive, is the question keeps you engrossed.
    I hoped he would as it turns out I rather like rough troubled action heroes!

    It was certainly a different book to my usual choices, however I really enjoyed it.
    As the title suggests it is book one in a series, looking forward to where the next book takes us!
    Nathan Best has drawn on his 30 years of active service in the Royal Australian Air Force to write this modern war story. I found the current military techniques of drones, satellite coordinates and weapons quite interesting.
    Well worth reading if you like action and modern war stories.

  2. I am a fan of war stories but generally more interested in tales of the older style wars. “Battle Born’ offered a different perspective of the action and skills required to navigate safely within the modern warfare framework. Even though the story is fictional, I found it to be realistic, or at least how I imagine our current wars are being fought. Although I would have enjoyed greater character depth and perhaps some different threads to follow, I think “Battle Born’ lives up to its genre as it is packed to the brim with suspense and action.

  3. Battle Born took me a while to read as there were many points I needed more strength to get past. Still read it I did and I must say it really can open your eyes to reality in our world and while the story is fiction I feel there is also an out of fact.
    Damien met many challenges. He is a veteran of combat operations and is requested to undertake this operation to proctect the Dutch operators in the Chora Valley of Afghanistan.
    A military operation in force.

  4. Battle Born by Nathan Best is not the type of story I will generally reach for, and while I did find it interesting, it probably won’t be a style I’ll go back to.

    The story is set in Afghanistan and centres around a special forces operative. My lack of knowledge in warfare, arms, gear and tactics made it hard for me to follow the action and even understand the majority of what was happening. This was further compounded by the many acronyms and military terminology used throughout the story.

    The numbers of casualties was astonishing, with deaths occurring every few pages. The characters who took joy in these compounded my confusion even more.

    I could see that in the right hands, this story would engage and excite, unfortunately those hands were not mine.

  5. Battle born is an action-packed modern warfare novel featuring Damien Hunter, an Aussie Air Force special forces operator turned contractor. Damien, battle scarred already, leads a team of three supporting a Dutch operation based in Afghanistan. The team’s mighty mission soon becomes a battle for survival.

    While I am not an expert on military manoeuvres, I found the novel realistic with detailed technical content and interesting military personnel/characters.

    Although readers are exposed to quite a bit of death and destruction, it was an engaging storyline – which would be enjoyable for many. I found it was easy to read, but I suggest this novel would mainly appeal to those who like contemporary action novels or military tales.

  6. Battle Born by Nathan Best took us into the deadly world of Danien Hunter, an Air Force special forces Veteran who is now working as a Contractor for the Taipan Organisation.

    Damien is battle weary after too long on the front line but has to hold it together for this one last mission before he and his team will have a much-needed break. Damien, the command of Taipan One Six, and his team Warwick ‘Wuz’ and Paul ‘Stayer’, usually take on missions that no one else will and feel their talents are lost in this final assignment where they are required to support a Dutch operation in Afghanistan. However, instead of the easy, in and out job they were expecting, the Dutch mission is flawed from the outset and Damien and his crew find themselves in a compromised position without the support of extraction they were promised.

    Fighting against the ruthless warlord Abd al-Malik and a psychopathic French Legionnaire that Malik has working for him, Damien, Wuz and Stayer team up with what’s left of the Dutch operation to try and fight for their survival.

    While aspects of the book were hard to read I couldn’t put it down and thoroughly enjoyed it. Lots of unexpected twists and turns and a very unexpected outcome for Taipan One Six kept interest in the storyline and the fabulous descriptive writing style of the Author transported me to Afghanistan with
    Damien and his team and kept me emotionally engaged throughout.

    Not my usual genre of choice but I loved this read and would highly recommend to anyone who enjoys an action-packed novel.

    Thank you to Beauty and Lace and Big Sky Publishing for the opportunity to read and review Battle Born, I will look for more Nathan Best novels after having read this one.

  7. Battle Born by Nathan Best was way out of my comfort zone and although I found it hard to follow due to lack of knowledge regarding war and fighting it took longer but I still finished the book. It was overall an enjoyable book just my lack of knowledge made it hard to keep up and know what was going on without doing bits of research myself.

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