Book cover from Billy Lynns Long Halftime Walk: A Novel by Ben Fountain
Book cover 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk: A Novel'

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk: A Novel

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Author(s): Ben Fountain
Format: Book › Paperback all formats
Edition: Reprint
Published: 09-06-2016
ISBN: 0062644025
Pages: 336
Publisher: Ecco
List Price: $16.99

BooksToRead Review

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk is the debut novel of American writer Ben Fountain. The book is about Bravo Company's experiences, and especially Billy Lin', the main character, after having gone through a bloody battle with Iraqi insurgents. This fight was followed by a television camera crew and the ensuing video becomes an instant hit on YouTube, making Bravo Company and Billy Lin in particular, American heroes overnight.

The Bush administration sees the enormous promotional opportunities of the video, brings the company home and organizes a victory tour throughout the country. The book describes the last hours of the tour and follows Billy and his team in the company of millionaires and politicians, unpleasant people and ordinary citizens, cheerleaders and Beyonc Knowles. Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk is funny and sharp, but also moving and compelling. A modern novel about eight young men struggling with their hero status, their hangovers, the incomprehensible death of their companions.

Book description

New York Times Bestseller
Now a Major Motion Picture

“Brilliantly done . . . grand, intimate, and joyous.”
New York Times Book Review

“Mothers, fathers, sons, and daughters: read this giant-hearted novel.”
—MARIA SEMPLE, author of Where’d You Go, Bernadette

Three minutes and forty-three seconds of intensive warfare with Iraqi insurgents—caught on tape by an embedded Fox News crew—has transformed the eight surviving men of Bravo Squad into America’s most sought-after heroes. Now they’re on a media-intensive nationwide tour to reinvigorate public support for the war. On this rainy Thanksgiving Day, the Bravos are guests of a Dallas football team, slated to be part of the halftime show.

Among the Bravos is nineteen-year-old Specialist Billy Lynn. Surrounded by patriots sporting flag pins on their lapels and support our troops bumper stickers, he is thrust into the company of the team’s owner and his coterie of wealthy colleagues; a born-again cheerleader; a veteran Hollywood producer; and supersized players eager for a vicarious taste of war. Over the course of this day, Billy will drink and brawl, yearn for home and mourn those missing, face a heart-wrenching decision and discover pure love and a bitter wisdom far beyond his years.

Poignant, riotously funny, and exquisitely heartbreaking, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk is a searing and powerful novel that has cemented Ben Fountain’s reputation as one of the finest writers of his generation.

Book review

Amazon Best Books of the Month, May 2012: Billy Lynn and his Bravo squad mates have become heroes thanks to an embedded Fox News crew’s footage of their firefight against Iraqi insurgents. During one day of their bizarre Victory Tour, set mostly at a Thanksgiving Day football game at Texas Stadium, they’re wooed by Hollywood producers, smitten by Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders, and share a stage at halftime with Beyonce. Guzzling Jack and Cokes and scuffling with fans, the Bravos are conflicted soldiers. “Okay, so maybe they aren’t the greatest generation,” writes debut author (!) Ben Fountain, who manages a sly feat: giving us a maddening and believable cast of characters who make us feel what it must be like to go to war. Veering from euphoria to dread to hope, Billy Lynn is a propulsive story that feels real and true. With fierce and fearless writing, Fountain is a writer worth every accolade about to come his way. --Neal Thompson

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