The Life of Victor Krulak, U.S. Marine
By Robert Coram
(Little, Brown and Company, Hardcover, 9780316758468, 384pp.)
Publication Date: November 2010
From the earliest days of his thirty-four-year military career, Victor "Brute" Krulak displayed a remarkable facility for applying creative ways of fighting to the Marine Corps. He went on daring spy missions, was badly wounded, pioneered the use of amphibious vehicles, and masterminded the invasion of Okinawa. In Korea, he was a combat hero and invented the use of helicopters in warfare. In Vietnam, he developed a holistic strategy in stark contrast to the Army's "Search and Destroy" methods-but when he stood up to LBJ to protest, he was punished. And yet it can be argued that all of his these accomplishments pale in comparison to what he did after World War II and again after Korea: Krulak almost single-handedly stopped the U.S. government from abolishing the Marine Corps.
Robert Coram was twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for his work as a reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He is the author of seven novels and four nonfiction books, including American Patriot: The Life and Wars of Colonel Bud Day and Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War. He lives in Atlanta.
"Coram captures General Krulak's striding march across the Marine Corps, and across the American century...[and] is a meticulous investigator of the things that drove Brute Krulak, not all of them pretty... Brute is plainspoken and absorbing...and captures its subject in strokes that are sharp, simple and often funny."
-New York Times
"Mr. Coram has produced a valuable work that significantly revises our understanding of-but does not diminish our respect for-one of the all-time great Marines."
-Wall Street Journal
"A well-written tale about a complicated yet admirable man."
-The Washington Times
"Robert Coram has written a long-needed biography of Lieutenant General "Brute" Krulak that captures the critical role he played in some of the seminal events in the history of the Marine Corps...Coram's masterful portrayal of Krulak's complex personality accurately depicts a leader who drove both himself and his Marines to excel, no matter what the cost."
-USMCR(Ret), author of Chesty: The Story of Lieutenant General Lewis B. Puller, USM
"A great book, a compelling and insightful look at one of America's greatest heroes. Like the man himself it tells the truth, blemishes and all, about this pivotal figure in American history. Brute Krulak's intelligence, courage and tenacity saved countless lives in three wars and perhaps saved the Marine Corps itself."
-author of I'm Staying with My Boys
"Splendid...Robert Coram is one of America's premier military biographers, both a gifted story-teller and adept at putting a life into historical context. His books on Bud Day and John Boyd will endure....If you're a present or future Marine; if you once wore the uniform; if you wish you still did (or could fit into it); if you think you once wore the uniform; if you love a Marine or care about the Marines; if you care about America - get it. This is an unpaid, unsolicited testimonial. It's just that there's so much junk out there these days, when something good comes along, it's almost a patriotic duty to mention it. And the subject is fascinating."
"Along with this brisk, highly readable, strongly reported biography's other attributes, add impeccable timing."
-Los Angeles Times
"A revealing-and troubling-portrait of a much-revered figure."
"Brute is a must read for all Marines, however no matter your branch of the service or level of interest in the military, this is a great and important story. The author takes you on a biographical, historical and emotional journey that is tantalizing from the very beginning. Strategy, technology, power and politics are abundant. The Veterans Hour easily rates Brute (4) Stars."
-The Veterans Hour
"Brute is a well-told tale-a gritty but fair reflection of a hard, cerebral man heeding his own code of honor while managing to thrive in the hardball arenas of war and politics."