Bestselling author Patrick Robinson helped Marcus Luttrell bring his harrowing story of survival in Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10 to the page and the big screen. But the Afghani man who saved his life was always shrouded in mystery. Now, with The Lion of Sabray, Robinson reveals the amazing backstory of Mohammed Gulab--the brave man who forever changed the course of life for his Afghan family, his village, and himself when he discovered Luttrell badly injured and barely conscious on a mountainside in the Hindu Kush just hours after the firefight that killed the rest of Luttrell's team.
Operating under the 2,000-year-old principles of Pashtunwali--the tribal honor code that guided his life--Gulab refused to turn Luttrell over to the Taliban forces that were hunting him, believing it was his obligation to protect and care for the American soldier. Because Gulab was a celebrated Mujahedeen field commander and machine-gunner who beat back the Soviets as a teenager, the Taliban were wary enough that they didn't simply storm the village and take Luttrell, which gave Gulab time to orchestrate his rescue.
In addition to Gulab's brave story, The Lion of Sabray cinematically reveals previously unknown details of Luttrell's rescue by American forces--which were only recently declassified--and sheds light on the ramifications for Gulab, his family, and his community. Going beyond both the book and the movie versions of Lone Survivor, The Lion of Sabray is a must-read for anyone who wants to know more about the brave man who helped the Lone Survivor make it home.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-09-21
- Reviewer: Staff
In 2013s Lone Survivor, thriller novelist and nonfiction author Robinson skillfully told the story of a Navy SEAL mission in Afghanistan gone awry. The disaster left Marcus Luttrell alone and injured before a dramatic rescue by Mohammad Gulab, a former Pashtun mujahideen. In this follow-up, Robinson shares the equally remarkable story of Gulab, who saved Luttrell and nursed him back to life while protecting him from Taliban attackers. Gulab, known as the Lion due to his fierce combat against Soviet invaders, commanded respect within his remote village, which allowed him to risk harboring an American soldier. Robinson artfully builds tension as Gulab, Luttrell, and Afghani soldiers play a cat-and-mouse game with Taliban fighters in treacherous mountain terrain. He reveals Gulab as a devout but conflicted man struggling to communicate with his charge and come to peace with his choice. The books sole flaw is Robinsons rush to wrap up the narrative after Luttrells retrieval by American forces, though he does offer updates on Luttrells efforts to reconnect with Gulab and the American effort to help rebuild Gulabs village as a form of repayment. Fans of Robinsons previous book will find this an insightful and inspiring companion piece. (Nov.)