Commandants reading list

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2017 Marine Corps Reading List

As per ALMAR 015/17, Below are the 110 books on the 2017 Marine Corps Reading list. Commandant Nellers orders: “All commanders are to incorporate this CRPL into their command and unite professional training programs.”


Commandants Choice

  1. “Leading Marines (MCWP 6-10)” USMC
  2. “Sustaining the Transformation (MCTP 6-10A)” USMC
  3. “Warfighting (MCDP 1)” USMC
  4. “First to Fight” V. Krulak
  5. “A World in Disarray” R. Haass
  6. “Legacy” J. Kerr
  7. “Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game” M. Lewis

Marine Corps Grade Level Reading Lists

Entry Level Enlisted: (Poolee, Recruit)

  1. “Battle Cry” L. Uris
  2. “Corps Values” Z. Miller
  3. “The Red Badge of Courage” S. Crane
  4. “Gates of Fire” S. Pressfield
  5.  “Starship Troopers” R. Heinlein

Entry Level Officer (Candidate, Midshipman)

  1. “Battle Cry” L. Uris
  2. “Corps Values” Z. Miller
  3. “Im Staying with My Boys” J. Proser and J. Cutter
  4. “My Men Are My Heroes” N. Helms
  5. “The Killer Angels” M. Shaara
  6. “Gates of Fire” S. Pressfield
  7. “Starship Troopers” R. Heinlein

Primary Level Enlisted (Pvt, LCpl)

  1. “Enders Game” O. Card
  2. “Rifleman Dodd” C. Forester
  3. “The Last Stand of Fox Company” B. Drury and T. Clavin
  4. “The Marines of Montford Point” M. Mclaurin
  5. “Chesty” J. Hoffman
  6. “The Warrior Ethos” S. Pressfield
  7. “On Call in Hell” R. Jadick
  8. “Ready Player One” E. Cline

Primary Level Officer (2ndLt, 1stLt)

  1. “All Quiet on the Western Front” E. Remarque
  2. “The Last Stand of Fox Company” B. Drury and T. Clavin
  3. “The Marines of Montford Point” M. Mclaurin
  4. “With The Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa” E. Sledge
  5. “Chesty” J. Hoffman
  6. “What It is Like To Go To War” K. Marlantes
  7. “Maneuver Warfare: An Anthology” J. Galvin and R. Hooker
  8. “Fields of Fire” J. Webb
  9. “At The Waters Edge: Defending Against the Modern Amphibious Assault” T. Gatchel
  10. “The Defense of Hill 781: An Allegory of Modern Mechanized Combat” J. Mcdonough
  11. “Ready Player One” E. Cline

Career Level Enlisted (Cpl, Sgt)

  1. “Resilience” E. Greitens
  2. “Outliers” M. Gladwell
  3. “The Defense of Duffers Drift” E. Swinton
  4. “The Killer Angels” M. Shaara
  5. “With The Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa” E. Sledge
  6. “Battle Leadership” A. Von Schell
  7. “Ghost Fleet” P. Singer and A. Cole
  8. “We Were Soldiers Once… and Young” H. Moore and J. Galloway
  9. “On Killing” D. Grossman
  10. “Left of Bang” P. Van Horne and J. Riley
  11. “The Revenge of Geography: What the Map Tells Us About Coming Conflicts and the Battle Against Fate” R. Kaplan

Career Level Officer (WO, CWO2, Capt)

  1.  “Attacks” E. Rommel
  2. “Black Hearts” J. Frederick
  3. “Into The Tigers Jaw” F. Petersen and J. Phelps
  4. “On Killing” D. Grossman
  5. “War Made New” M. Boot
  6. “Curious: The Desire to Know And Why Your Future Depends On It” I. Leslie
  7. “Forgotten Warriors” T. Hammes
  8. “Maneuver Warfare Handbook” W. Lind
  9. “Assault from the Sea: Essays on the History Of Amphibious Warfare” M. Bartlett
  10. “The Starfish and the Spider” O. Brafman and R. Beckstrom
  11. “Neptunes Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal” J. Hornfischer
  12. “The Revenge of Geography: What the Map Tells Us about coming conflicts and the battle against fate” R. Kaplan
  13. “Out of the Mountains: The Coming Age of the Urban Guerrilla” D. Kilcullen

Intermediate Level Enlisted (SSgt, GySgt)

  1.  “All Quiet On The Western Front” E. Remarque
  2. “American Spartans” J. Warren
  3. “The Changing Face of War” M. Van Creveld
  4. “This Kind of War” T. Fehrenbach
  5. “Fields of Fire” J. Webb
  6. “Leading Change” J. Kotter
  7. “My Men Are My Heroes” N. Helms
  8. “Thinking Fast and Slow” D. Kahneman
  9. “Leading Up” M. Useem
  10. “Once an Eagle” A. Myrer
  11. “The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution” W. Isaacson

Intermediate Level Officer (CWO3, CWO4, Maj, LtCol)

  1. “Command Culture” J. Muth
  2. “Defeat Into Victory” W. Slim
  3. “Just and Unjust Wars” M. Walzer
  4. “Military Innovation in The Interwar Period” W. Murray and A. Millett
  5. “The Warriors: Reflections on Men in Battle” J. Gray
  6. “The Utility of Force: The Art of War in the Modern World” R. Smith
  7. “This Kind Of War” T. Fehrenbach
  8. “Team of Teams” S. McChrystal and T. Collins
  9. “Countdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the Worlds First Digital Weapon” K. Zetter
  10. “After the Prophet: The Epic Story of the Shia-Sunni Split in Islam” L. Hazelton
  11. “Monsoon: The Indian Ocean and the Future of American Power” R. Kaplan
  12. “Cobra II: The Inside Story Of the Invasion and Occupation of Iraq” M. Gordon and B. Trainor
  13. “The Blitzkrieg Legend: The 1940 Campaign in the West” K. Frieser
  14. “Storming the City: US Military Performance in Urban Warfare from WWII to Vietnam” A. Wahlman
  15. “The Mind of War: John Boyd and American Security“  G. Hammond
  16. “The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution” W. Isaacson
  17. “The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology” R. Kurzweil

Senior Level Enlisted (MSgt, 1stSgt, MGySgt, SgtMaj)

  1. “Achilles in Vietnam” J. Shay
  2. “Command Culture” J. Muth
  3. “Forgotten Warriors” T. Hammes
  4. “Just and Unjust Wars” M. Walzer
  5. “No Bended Knee” M. Twining
  6. “The Face of Battle” J. Keegan
  7. “Team of Teams” S. McChrystal
  8. “Start with Why” S. Sinek
  9. “On Combat” D. Grossman
  10. “Guns of August” B. Tuchman
  11.  “The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future” K. Kelly
  12.   “The Innovators Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail” C. Christensen
  13.   “The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology” R. Kurzweil

Senior Level Officer (CWO5, Col-Gen)

  1. “Another Bloody Century” C. Gray
  2. “Assignment Pentagon: How To Excel in A Bureaucracy” P. Smith and D. Gerstein
  3. “Dereliction of Duty: Johnson, McNamara, The Joint Chiefs Of Staff And the Lies That Led to Vietnam” H. McMaster
  4. “Diplomacy” H. Kissinger
  5. “Little Book Of Economics: How The Economy Works in the Real World” G. Ip
  6. “Supreme Command: Soldiers, Statesmen and Leadership in Wartime” E. Cohen
  7. “Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln” D. Goodwin
  8. “The Federalist Papers” A. Hamilton
  9. “The Landmark Thucydides” R. Strassler
  10. “Every War Must End” F. Ikle
  11. “The Soldier and the State” S. Huntington
  12. “Strategy: A History” L. Freedman
  13. “Treasurys War” J. Zarate
  14. “Guns of August” B. Tuchman
  15. “Stilwell and the American Experience In China: 1911-1945” B. Tuchman
  16. “The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future” K. Kelly
  17.  “The Innovators Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail” C. Christensen

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Sours: https://www.dodreads.com/military-reading-lists/the-official-marine-corps-reading-list-commandants-choice/

The Commandant’s Reading List is a list of books that Marines are recommended and often required to read. They are meant to help Marines develop their personal and professional character. The comprised list is what was published by the Commandant of the Marines Corps. If any changes have been made through a MARADMIN or ALMAR and it is not reflected here, please leave a comment and I will make the necessary corrections.

Leave comments for any books you would recommend to other Marines. Also see the CNO Reading List.

It is about attaining a “30 Year Old Body and 5000 Year Old Mind”as General Amos put it in his 2012 white letter:


In 1989, General Al Gray promulgated the first Commandant’ s Reading List and challenged Marines of every rank to re-dedicate themselves to the study of their profession. Our twenty-ninth Commandant clearly understood that the development and broadening of the mind is a critical aspect of the true warrior ‘s preparation for battle. General Gray viewed reading as a means of preparing for the future, and combat in particular. He ensured that his Marines knew he considered mental preparation as important as physical conditioning or even MOS training.

The introduction of that first list was a milestone in the history of our Corps. It represented an important and useful manifestation of the professional study that has always characterized us as Marines. The idea of Marines diligently pursuing the profession of arms by reading on their own has resonated inside and outside the Corps. Comparing themselves to the most professional military organizations throughout history, Marines take great pride in being part of a thinking and learning organization. The emphasis on thoughtful reading has stood us in good stead over the last 11 years. The adaptation and flexibility shown by Marines faced with a variety of different situations and challenges was anchored in many years of mental preparation for combat.

Over recent years I have become increasingly concerned that Marines are not reading enough anymore. Many are not reading at all. This has happened for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, the last 11 years of continuous combat in Iraq and Afghanistan have been characterized by a high operational tempo that made extraordinary demands on time. Under the pressure of competing requirements, reading was one of the first things to go. For all practical purposes it has been gone for years. Our senior leaders have not emphasized the importance of reading.

Faced with a period of fiscal austerity and an uncertain world, it’s more important now than ever before to dedicate time to read and to think. As we prepare ourselves for whatever is to come, the study of military history offers the inexpensive chance to learn from the hard-won experience of others, find a template for solving existing challenges, and avoid making the same mistakes twice. As it was once wisely put, reading provides a “better way to do business.. it doesn’t always provide all the answers.. but it lights what is often a dark path ahead.” Any book thoughtfully read sharpens the mind and improves on an individual’s professional potential.

Whatever has caused our emphasis on reading to atrophy, we as Marines and as leaders, need to restore its preeminence at every level. The Marine Corps will return to its roots as an organization that studies and applies the lessons of history. The attached Commandant’ s Professional Reading List represents an updated version of those books most pertinent to the development of professional skills at each level. I have personally reviewed it, and made both deletions and additions. It forms the core of an expanded professional military education program that I expect to be overseen by Commanding Officers and unit leaders at every level. Every Marine will read at least three books from the list each year. All books listed at each level of rank are required, while the books listed under categories are recommended readings to expand understanding in specific areas. The list represents only a starting point, and will ideally whet the appetite for further reading and study.
Commanders and senior enlisted will reinvigorate the critical emphasis on reading in their units and develop a unit reading program. Books will be selected for reading and discussion, with time set aside in the schedule to that end. The idea that true professionals study their profession all the time – not just in PME schools – will continue to be a strongly emphasized theme in all of our professional schools..officer and enlisted.

This letter represents only the first installment in this effort. On 1 January, a follow-on ALMAR will be published that provides further detail. I have also directed that specific guidance be promulgated that ensures that item G-1 (Professional Military Education) in the fitness report is being used to accurately describe a Marine’ s dedication to the pursuit of life-long learning.

Let me end by saying that I am well aware that much has been asked of our leadership in recent years – some may see this as yet another requirement. I ask that this white letter not be taken in that light. Reading is a critical continuing action. We need to find the time for it just as we find time weekly for individual and unit physical conditioning. What I am calling for is nothing less than a renewal of a critical aspect of our commitment to the profession of arms.

– James F. Amos
“Marines … the study of our profession is what we do – it tells all … who we are!”


All of the links in this list are affiliate links. The “free audiobook” links are valid for those who have not tried Audible.com and would like to signup for a FREE trial. Currently, Amazon is offering two free audiobooks with a free trial membership.

Commandant’s Choice

“A Message to Garcia” by E. Hubbard
“Leading Marines (MCWP 6-11)” by the United States Marine Corps.
“The Warrior Ethos” by S. Pressfield
“Warfighting (MCDP 1)” by the United States Marine Corps

Entry Level Enlisted: Recruit/Poolee

“Battle Cry” by L. Uris
“Corps Values” by Z. Miller
“Making the Corps” by T. Ricks (free audiobook)
“The Red Badge of Courage” by S. Crane (free audiobook)

Entry Level Officer: Candidate/Midshipman

“Battle Cry” by L. Uris
“Corps Values” by Z. Miller
“I’m Staying With My Boys” J. Proser and J. Cutter
“Making the Corps” by T. Ricks (free audiobook)
“My Men Are My Heroes” by N. Helms
“The Killer Angels” by M. Shaara (free audiobook)

Primary Level Enlisted: Pvt.-Cpl.

“Ender’s Game” by O. Card (free audiobook)
“Gates of Fire” by S. Pressfield (free audiobook)
“Marine! The Life of Chesty Puller” by B. Davis
“My Men Are My Heroes” by N. Helms
“Rifleman Dodd” by C.S. Forester
“The Last Stand of Fox Company” by B. Drury and T. Clavin (free audiobook)
“The Marines of Montford Point: America’s First Black Marines” by M. McLaurin

Primary Level Officer: WO, 2nd Lt., 1st Lt.

“All Quiet on the Western Front” by E. Remarque (free audiobook)
“Battle Leadership” by A. Von Schell
“Gates of Fire” by S. Pressfield (free audiobook)
“Marine! The Life of Chesty Puller” by B. Davis
“Matterhorn: a Novel of the Vietnam War” by K. Marlantes (free audiobook)
“The Defense of Duffer’s Drift” by E. Swinton
“The Forgotten Soldier” by G. Sajer
“The Last Stand of Fox Company” by B. Drury and T. Clavin (free audiobook)
“The Marines of Montford Point: America’s First Black Marines” by M. McLaurin
“U.S. Constitution”
“With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa” by E. Sledge (free audiobook)

Career Level Enlisted: Sgt., SSgt.

“First to Fight: An Inside View of the U.S. Marine Corps” by V. Krulak
“Islands of the Damned” by R. Burgin and B. Marvel (free audiobook)
“Outliers” by M. Gladwell (free audiobook)
“Quartered Safe Out Here” by G. Fraserl (free audiobook)
“Soldiers of God” by R. Kaplan
“Storm of Steel” by E. Junger (free audiobook)
“The Defense of Duffer’s Drift” by E. Swinton
“The Forgotten Soldier” by G. Sajer
“The Killer Angels” by M. Shaara (free audiobook)
“U.S. Constitution”
“With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa” by E. Sledge (free audiobook)

Career Level Officer: CWO-2, CWO-3, Capt.

“Attacks” by E. Rommel
“Black Hearts” by J. Frederick (free audiobook)
“First to Fight: An Inside View of the U.S. Marine Corps” by V. Krulak
“Infantry in Battle (FMFRP 12-2)” by the United States Marine Corps
“Into the Tiger’s Jaw” by F. Petersen
“Islands of the Damned” by R. Burgin and B. Marvel (free audiobook)
“On Killing” by D. Grossman (free audiobook)
“Outliers” by M. Gladwell (free audiobook)
“Quartered Safe Out Here” by G. Fraser (free audiobook)
“Sources of Power” by G. Klein
“The Virtues of War” by S. Pressfield (free audiobook)
“U.S. Constitution”
“War Made New” by M. Boot

Intermediate Level Enlisted: GySgt., MSgt., 1st Sgt.

“All Quiet on the Western Front” by E. Remarque (free audiobook)
“American Spartan” by J. Warren (free audiobook)
“Fields of Fire” by J. Webb (free audiobook)
“Flags of Our Fathers” by J. Bradley (free audiobook)
“Helmet For My Pillow” by R. Leckie
“On Killing” by D. Grossman (free audiobook)
“The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us and What We Can Do About It” by J. Ramo (free audiobook)
“The Changing Face of War” by M. Van Creveld
“This Kind of War” by T. Fehrenbach (free audiobook)
“U.S. Constitution”
“We Were Soldiers Once…And Young” by H. Moore and J. Galloway

Intermediate Level Officer: CWO-4, CWO-5, Maj., Lt.Col.

“Battle Cry of Freedom” by J. McPherson (free audiobook)
“Blink” by M. Gladwell (free audiobook)
“Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War” by R. Coram (free audiobook)
“Brute: The Life of Victor Krulak” by R. Coram (free audiobook)
“Carnage and Culture” by V. Hanson
“Command Culture” by J. Muth
“Defeat into Victory” by W. Slim
“Forgotten Warriors” by T. Hammes
“Hot, Flat, and Crowded” by T. Freidman (free audiobook)
“Just and Unjust Wars” by M. Walzer (free audiobook)
“Military Innovation in the Interwar Period” by W. Murray and A. Millett
“Ripples of Battle” by V. Hanson
“The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us and What We Can Do About It” by J. Ramo (free audiobook)
“The Warriors: Reflections on Men in Battle” by J. Gray
“This Kind of War” by T. Fehrenbach (free audiobook)

Senior Level Enlisted: MGySgt., SgtMaj.

“Achilles in Vietnam” by J. Shay
“Assignment Pentagon: How to Excel in a Bureaucracy” by P. Smith and D. Gerstein
“Command Culture” by J. Muth
“Forgotten Warriors” by T. Hammes
“Hot, Flat, and Crowded” by T. Freidman (free audiobook)
“Just and Unjust Wars” by M. Walzer (free audiobook)
“No Bended Knee” by M. Twining
“The Face of Battle” by J. Keegan (free audiobook)
“The Mask of Command” by J. Keegan

Senior Level Officer: Col.-Gen.

“Another Bloody Century” by C. Gray
“Assignment Pentagon: How to Excel in a Bureaucracy” by P. Smith and D. Gerstein
“Dereliction of Duty: Johnson, McNamara, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Lies that Led to Vietnam” by H. McMaster
“Diplomacy” by H. Kissinger
“How Wars End” by G. Rose (free audiobook)
“Landscape of History: How Historians Map the Past” by J. Gaddis
“Little Book of Economics: How the Economy Works in the Real World” by G. Ip
“Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle” by S. Biddle
“Modern Strategy” by C. Gray
“Supreme Command: Soldiers, Statesmen and Leadership in Wartime” by E. Cohen
“Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln” by D. Goodwin (free audiobook)
“The Federalist Papers” by A. Hamilton
“The Guns of August” by B. Tuchman (free audiobook)
“The Landmark of Thucydides” by R. Strassler
“The Revenge of Geography” by R. Kaplan (free audiobook)

Aviation

“100 Years of Marine Corps Aviation: An Illustrated History” by R. Kaufman
“Hammer From Above: Marine Air Combat Over Iraq” by J. Stout
“Marine Air: The History of the Flying Leathernecks in Words and Photos” by R. Dorr
“On Yankee Station: The Naval Air War over Vietnam” by J. Nichols and B. Tillman
“The Art of Airpower, Sun Tzu Revisited” by S. Kainikara
“The Naval Air War in Korea” by R. Hallion
“U.S. Marine Corps Aviation Since 1912” by P. Mersky

Logistics

“Alexander the Great and the Logistics of the Macedonian Army” by D. Engels
“Clockspeed” by C. Fine
“Feeding Mars: Logistics in Western Warfare from the Middle Ages to the Present” by J. Lynn
“Keep from All Thoughtful Men: How U.S. Economists Won WWII” by J. Lacey
“Pacific Express: The Critical Role of Military Logistics In WWII” by W. McGee
“Recurring Logistic Problems as I Have Observed Them” by C. Magruder
“Supplying War” by M. van Creveld

Counterinsurgency

“Counterinsurgency Warfare” by D. Galula
“Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife” by J. Nagl and P. Schoomaker (free audiobook)
“Street Without Joy” by B. Fall (free audiobook)
“The Accidental Guerilla” by D. Kilcullen (free audiobook)
“The Village” by B. West
“War Comes to Long An” by J. Race

Roots of Maneuver Warfare

“Airpower and Maneuver Warfare” by M. van Creveld
“Assault from the Sea: Essays on the History of Amphibious Warfare” by M. Bartlett
“Maneuver Warfare” by G. Galvin and R. Hooker
“Maneuver Warfare Handbook” by W. Lind
“The U.S. Marines and Amphibious War: Its Theory and Practice in the Pacific” by J. Isley and P. Crowl

Wounded Warrior

“Ascent” by B. McGhie
“Courage After Fire: Coping Strategies for Troops Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and Their families” by K. Armstrong, S. Best, and P. Domenici
“Down Range: To Iraq and Back” by B. Cantrell and C. Dean
“Odysseus in America: Combat Trauma and the Trials of Homecoming” by J. Shay
“Once a Warrior Always a Warrior: Navigating the Transition from Combat to Home” by C. Hoge (free audiobook)
“Once a Warrior: Wired for Life” by B. Cantrell and C. Dean
“Overcoming Post-Deployment Syndrome: A Six Step Mission to Health” by D. Cifu and C. Blake
“Shadow of the Sword” by J. Workman
“Soft Spots: A Marine’s Memoir of Combat and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder” by C. Van Winkle
“Unbroken: A WWII Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption” by L. Hillenbrand (free audiobook)
“War and the Soul: Healing Our Nation’s Veterans from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder” by E. Tick
“Warrior Mindset” by M. Asken, L. Christensen, D. Grossman
“What It Is Like to Go to War” by K. Marlantes (free audiobook)

Strategic Thinking

“Critical Thinking: Tools for Taking Charge of Your Professional and Personal Life” by R. Paul and L. Elder
“General System Theory” by L. Von Bartalanffy
“Harnessing Complexity” by R. Axelrod and M. Cohen
“Rethinking the Principles of War” by A. McIvor
“The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable” by N. Taleb (free audiobook)
“The Copernican Revolution” by T. Kuhn
“Thinking Fast and Slow” by D. Kahneman (free audiobook)
“Thinking in Time: The uses of Histry for Decision Makers” by R. Neustadt and E. May

Regional and Cultural Studies

“Angry Wind: Through Muslim Black Africa by Truck, Bus, Boat, and Camel” by J. Tayler
“Eastward to Tartary: Travels in the Balkans, the Middle East, and the Caucasus” by R. Kaplan
“Monsoon” by R. Kaplan
“Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea” by B. Demick (free audiobook)
“The Great Arab Conquests” by H. Kennedy
“Understanding Arabs: A Contemporary Guide to Arab Society” by M. Nydell
“What Went Wrong? The Clash Between Islam and Modernity in he Middle East” by B. Lewis (free audiobook)

Leadership

“Developing the Leaders Around You” by J. Maxwell (free audiobook)
“Heoric Leadership” by C. Lowney (free audiobook)
“Leadership and the New Science” by M. Wheatly
“Lincoln on Leadership: Executive Strategies for Tough Times” by D. Phillips (free audiobook)
“Once a Marine” by N. Popaditch and M. Steere (free audiobook)
“Start With Why” by S. Sinek (free audiobook)
“The Power of Communication” by H. Garcia
“The Starfish and the Spider” by O. Brafman and R. Beckstrom (free audiobook)

Sours: https://www.usmcofficer.com/marine-corps-knowledge/commandants-reading-list/
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Here are the 46 books on the 2020 Marine Commandant’s Reading List

On Tuesday the Marine Corps released its revamped, 2020 reading list from commandant. And, boy, did it look different than years past.

It’s in a new format: Unlike previous years, there is just one list this year, for Marines of all ranks (and reading levels ― there’s at least one with pictures!). The list also includes podcast and periodical suggestions, to really balance it out and bring it into the 21st century.

Not only were books focused on female Marines finally included on the list, but so was a graphic novel by Terminal Lance comic strip creator Maximilian Uriarte. Viral courage and vulnerability researcher Brené Brown made the list. Medal of Honor recipient Kyle Carpenter’s book got a nod, so did the memoir of Marine icon Jim Mattis.

The full list is below. Which book are you most excited to read?

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Terminal Lance’s Max Uriarte, stories of female Marines added to radically changed Commandant’s Reading List

Commandant’s Choice

“The Kill Chain: Defending America in the Future of High-Tech Warfare,” Christian Brose.

Profession of Arms

“After Action: The True Story of a Cobra Pilot’s Journey,” Dan Sheehan.

“Black Hearts: One Platoon’s Descent Into Madness in Iraq’s Triangle of Death,” Jim Frederick.

“First to Fight: An Inside View of the U.S. Marine Corps” Victor H. Krulak.

“Forgotten Warriors: The 1st Provisional Marine Brigade, the Corps Ethos, and the Korean War,” T.X. Hammes.

“Hesitation Kills: A Female Marine Officer’s Combat Experience in Iraq,” Jane Blair.

“The Last Stand of Fox Company: A True Story of U.S. Marines in Combat," Robert Drury and Tom Clavin.

“The Marines of Montford Point: America’s First Black Marines,” Melton A. McLaurin.

“Marine Sniper: 93 Confirmed Kills," Charles W. Henderson.

“Neptune’s Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal," James D. Hornfischer.

“We Were One: Shoulder to Shoulder with the Marines Who Took Fallujah,” Patrick K. O’Donnell.

“Women at War: Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Conflicts,” James E. Wise Jr., Scott Baron.

Innovation

“Assault from the Sea: Essays on the History of Amphibious Warfare,” Merrill Bartlett.

“Code Talker: The First and Only Memoir by One of the Original Navajo Code Talkers of WWII,” Chester Nez and Judith Schiess Avila.

“Countdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the World’s First Digital Weapon,” Kim Zetter.

“Curious: The Desire to Know and Why Your Future Depends On It,” Ian Leslie.

“Issues on My Mind: Strategies for the Future," George P. Schultz.

“Learning War: The Evolution of Fighting Doctrine in the U.S. Navy, 1898–1945," Trent Hone.

“The Master Algorithm: How the Quest for the Ultimate Learning Machine Will Remake Our World," Pedro Domingos.

“Military Innovation in the Interwar Period," Williamson R. Murray, Allan R. Millett.

“On Call in Hell: A Doctor’s Iraq War Story," Richard Jadick and Thomas Hayden.

“Sgt Reckless: America’s War Horse,” Robin Hutton.

“The White Donkey: Terminal Lance," Maximilian Uriarte.

“Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century," P. W. Singer.

Leadership

“Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead," Jim Mattis and Bing West.

“Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts," Brené Brown.

“It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership," Colin Powell.

“The Leader’s Bookshelf," J. Stavridis, R. Manning Ancell.

“Legacy: 15 Lessons in Leadership," James Kerr.

“Resilience: Hard-won Wisdom for Living a Better Life,” Eric Greitens.

“Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business," Charles Duhigg.

“Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action," Simon Sinek.

“Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging," Sebastian Junger.

“Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption," Laura Hillenbrand.

"You Are Worth It: Building a Life Worth Fighting For,” Kyle Carpenter, Don Yaeger.

Strategy

“Cybersecurity & Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know," P. W. Singer, Allan Friedman.

“Fleet Tactics & Naval Operations, 3rd ed," Wayne P. Hughes; Robert Girrier.

“Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...And Others Don’t,” James C. Collins.

“Humility is the New Smart: Rethinking Human Excellence in the Smart Machine Age,” Edward D. Hess and Katherine Ludwig.

“LikeWar: The Weaponization of Social Media,” Emerson T. Brooking and P. W. Singer.

“A New Conception of War: John Boyd, the U.S. Marines, and Maneuver Warfare," Ian T. Brown.

“Monsoon: The Indian Ocean and the Future of American Power," Robert D. Kaplan.

“One Hundred Days: The Memoirs of the Falklands Battle Group Commander,” Sandy Woodward, Patrick Robinson.

“Red Star Over the Pacific: China’s Rise and the Challenge to U.S. Maritime Strategy," Toshi Yoshihara and James R. Holmes.

“Thinking Fast & Slow," Daniel Kahneman.

“The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds," Michael Lewis.

Andrea Scott is editor of Marine Corps Times. On Twitter: _andreascott.

About Andrea Scott

Andrea Scott is editor of Marine Corps Times.

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2020 Commandant of the Marine Corps Reading List (33 Books)

Description

Order the Official 2020 Marine Corps Reading List

The 2020 Marine Corps Reading list was recently published in ALMAR 023/20 and with some major updates. The USMC Reading List contains 50 books and is broken up between Profession Of Arms, innovation, Leadership, Strategy, CMC Choice, Fundamentals, podcast & Periodicals. *Due to COVID-19 related supply and shipping issues, purchases of this list will include the top 33 books available at the time of purchase.*

The Marine Corps puts out their reading list annually and it is published through the Marine Corps University Library.

Profession of Arms

  1. AFTER ACTION: THE TRUE STORY OF A COBRA PILOT’S JOURNEY by Dan Sheehan
  2. BLACK HEARTS: ONE PLATOON’S DESCENT INTO MADNESS IN IRAQ’S TRIANGLE OF DEATH by Jim Frederick
  3. FIRST TO FIGHT: AN INSIDE VIEW OF THE U.S. MARINE CORPS by Victor H. Krulak
  4. FORGOTTEN WARRIORS: THE 1ST PROVISIONAL MARINE BRIGADE, THE CORPS ETHOS, AND THE KOREAN WAR by T. X. Hammes
  5. HESITATION KILLS: A FEMALE MARINE OFFICER’S COMBAT EXPERIENCE IN IRAQ by Jane Blair
  6. THE LAST STAND OF FOX COMPANY: A TRUE STORY OF U.S. MARINES IN COMBAT by Bob Drury; Thomas Clavin
  7. MARINE SNIPER: 93 CONFIRMED KILLS by Charles Henderson
  8. THE MARINES OF MONTFORD POINT: AMERICA’S FIRST BLACK MARINES by Melton Alonza McLaurin
  9. NEPTUNE’S INFERNO: THE U.S. NAVY AT GUADALCANAL by James D. Hornfischer
  10. WE WERE ONE: SHOULDER TO SHOULDER WITH THE MARINES WHO TOOK FALLUJAH by Patrick K. O’Donnell
  11. WOMEN AT WAR: IRAQ, AFGHANISTAN, AND OTHER CONFLICTS by James E. Wise; Scott Baron

Innovation

  1. ASSAULT FROM THE SEA: ESSAYS ON THE HISTORY OF AMPHIBIOUS WARFARE by Merrill L. Bartlett
  2. CODE TALKER: THE FIRST AND ONLY MEMOIR BY ONE OF THE ORIGINAL NAVAJO CODE TALKERS OF WWII by Chester Nez; Judith Schiess Avila
  3. CURIOUS: THE DESIRE TO KNOW AND WHY YOUR FUTURE DEPENDS ON IT by Ian Leslie
  4. ISSUES ON MY MIND: STRATEGIES FOR THE FUTURE by George P. Shultz; Henry A. Kissinger (Foreword by)
  5. LEARNING WAR: THE EVOLUTION OF FIGHTING DOCTRINE IN THE U.S. NAVY, 1898–1945 by Trent Hone
  6. THE MASTER ALGORITHM: HOW THE QUEST FOR THE ULTIMATE LEARNING MACHINE WILL REMAKE OUR WORLD by Pedro Domingos
  7. MILITARY INNOVATION IN THE INTERWAR PERIOD by Williamson R. Murray (Ed.); Alan R. Millet (Ed.)
  8. ON CALL IN HELL: A DOCTOR’S IRAQ WAR STORY by Richard Jadick; Thomas Hayden
  9. SGT RECKLESS: AMERICA’S WAR HORSE by Robin L. Hutton
  10. THE WHITE DONKEY: TERMINAL LANCE by Maximilian Uriarte
  11. WIRED FOR WAR: THE ROBOTICS REVOLUTION AND CONFLICT IN THE 21ST CENTURY by P. W. Singer

Leadership

  1. CALL SIGN CHAOS: LEARNING TO LEAD by Jim Mattis; Bing West
  2. DARE TO LEAD: BRAVE WORK. TOUGH CONVERSATIONS. WHOLE HEARTS by Brené Brown
  3. IT WORKED FOR ME: IN LIFE AND LEADERSHIP by Colin Powell
  4. THE LEADER’S BOOKSHELF by Adm James Stavridis, USN (Ret.); R. Manning Ancell
  5. LEGACY by James Kerr
  6. RESILIENCE: HARD-WON WISDOM FOR LIVING A BETTER LIFE by Eric Greitens
  7. SMARTER FASTER BETTER: THE SECRETS OF BEING PRODUCTIVE IN LIFE AND BUSINESS by Charles Duhigg
  8. START WITH WHY: HOW GREAT LEADERS INSPIRE EVERYONE TO TAKE ACTION by Simon Sinek
  9. TRIBE: ON HOMECOMING AND BELONGING by Sebastian Junger
  10. UNBROKEN: A WORLD WAR II STORY OF SURVIVAL, RESILIENCE, AND REDEMPTION by Laura Hillenbrand
  11. YOU ARE WORTH IT: BUILDING A LIFE WORTH FIGHTING FOR by Kyle Carpenter; Don Yaeger

Strategy

  1. CYBERSECURITY AND CYBERWAR: WHAT EVERYONE NEEDS TO KNOW by P. W. Singer; Allan Friedman
  2. FLEET TACTICS AND NAVAL OPERATIONS (3rd ED.) by Wayne P. Hughes; Robert Girrier
  3. GOOD TO GREAT: WHY SOME COMPANIES MAKE THE LEAP AND OTHERS DON’T by Jim Collins
  4. HUMILITY IS THE NEW SMART: RETHINKING HUMAN EXCELLENCE IN THE SMART MACHINE AGE by Edward D. Hess; Katherine Ludwig
  5. LIKEWAR: THE WEAPONIZATION OF SOCIAL MEDIA by P. W. Singer; Emerson T. Brooking
  6. MONSOON: THE INDIAN OCEAN AND THE FUTURE OF AMERICAN POWER by Robert D. Kaplan
  7. A NEW CONCEPTION OF WAR: JOHN BOYD, THE U.S. MARINES, AND MANEUVER WARFARE by Ian T. Brown
  8. ONE HUNDRED DAYS : THE MEMOIRS OF THE FALKLANDS BATTLE GROUP COMMANDER by Sandy Woodward; Patrick Robinson
  9. RED STAR OVER THE PACIFIC: CHINA’S RISE AND THE CHALLENGE TO U.S. MARITIME STRATEGY by Toshi Yoshihara; James R. Holmes
  10. THINKING, FAST AND SLOW by Daniel Kahneman
  11. THE UNDOING PROJECT: A FRIENDSHIP THAT CHANGED OUR MINDS by Michael Lewis

CMC Choice

  1. THE KILL CHAIN: DEFENDING AMERICA IN THE FUTURE OF HIGH-TECH WARFARE by Christian Brose

Foundational

  1. CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA by James Madison, et. al.
  2. LEARNING (MCDP-7) by United States Marine Corps
  3. WARFIGHTING (MCDP-1) by United States Marine Corps

Podcasts

  1. Sea Control (CIMSEC)
  2. DODReads: What Are You Reading?
  3. The Dead Prussian
  4. Horns of a Dilemma
  5. Net Assessment (War on the Rocks)
  6. Modern War Institute Podcast
  7. War Room (US Army War College)
  8. Wavell Room: Contemporary British Military Thought
  9. TED Talks Daily
  10. WSJ The Future of Everything
  11. Global News Podcast (BBC)
  12. The Truth of the Matter
  13. The Security Studies Podcast
  14. US-China Dialogue Podcast
  15. Council on Foreign Relations
  16. The Backstory

Periodicals

  1. The Cove
  2. The Forge
  3. Grounded Curiosity
  4. Journal of Advanced Military Studies (JAMS)
  5. Leatherneck
  6. Marine Corps Gazette
  7. Modern War Institute
  8. Proceedings (US Naval Institute)
  9. Small Wars Journal
  10. The Strategy Bridge
  11. War on the Rocks
  12. Yellow Sheet (Marine Corps Aviation Association)

 


We are able to send to all Military FPO / AP addresses and can accept GSC Credit cards under the Micro-purchase level.

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Commandant’s Professional Reading List (Foundational)

Please note: You are viewing the Foundational Commandant’s Reading List, which is comprised of the CPRL as it was before General Berger released his new CPRL. To view the new CPRL Please Click Here

Commandant's Choice (All Marines)

ThisFirst to Fight
Victor H. Krulak

LtGen, USMC (ret)

Buy “First to Fight” at Marineshop.net

In this riveting insider’s chronicle, legendary Marine General “Brute” Krulak submits an unprecedented examination of U.S. Marines – their fights on the battlefield and off, their extraordinary esprit de corps. Deftly blending history with autobiography, action with analysis, and separating fact from fable, General Krulak touches the very essence of the Corps: what it means to be a Marine and the reason behind its consistently outstanding performance and reputation.

Krulak also addresses the most basic but challenging question of all about the Corps: how does it manage to survive – even to flourish – despite overwhelming political odds and, as the general writes, “an extraordinary propensity for shooting itself in the foot?” To answer this question Krulak examines the foundation on which the Corps is built, a system of intense loyalty to God, to country, and to other Marines. He also takes a close look at Marines in war, offering challenging accounts of their experiences in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. In addition, he describes the Corps’s relationship to other services, especially during the unification battles following World War II, and offers new insights into the decision-making process in times of crisis. First published in hardcover in 1984, this book has remained popular ever since with Marines of every rank.

Hue 1968
Mark Bowden

Buy “Hue 1968” at Marineshop.net

The first battle book from Mark Bowden since his #1 New York Times bestseller Black Hawk Down, Hue 1968 is the story of the centerpiece of the Tet Offensive and a turning point in the American War in Vietnam.

In the early hours of January 31, 1968, the North Vietnamese launched over one hundred attacks across South Vietnam in what would become known as the Tet Offensive. The lynchpin of Tet was the capture of Hue, Vietnam’s intellectual and cultural capital, by 10,000 National Liberation Front troops who descended from hidden camps and surged across the city of 140,000. Within hours the entire city was in their hands save for two small military outposts. American commanders refused to believe the size and scope of the Front’s presence, ordering small companies of Marines against thousands of entrenched enemy troops. After several futile and deadly days, Lieutenant Colonel Ernie Cheatham would finally come up with a strategy to retake the city, block by block and building by building, in some of the most intense urban combat since World War II.

With unprecedented access to war archives in the U.S. and Vietnam and interviews with participants from both sides, Bowden narrates each stage of this crucial battle through multiple viewpoints. Played out over 24 days and ultimately costing 10,000 lives, the Battle of Hue was by far the bloodiest of the entire war. When it ended, the American debate was never again about winning, only about how to leave. Hue 1968 is a gripping and moving account of this pivotal moment.

The Leader's Bookshelf
Adm. James Stavridis, USN (Ret.)
and R. Manning Ancell

Buy “The Leader’s Bookshelf” at Marineshop.net

For the last several years Adm. James Stavridis and his co-author, R. Manning Ancell, have surveyed over two hundred active and retired four-star military officers about their reading habits and favorite books, asking each for a list of titles that strongly influenced their leadership skills and provided them with special insights that helped propel them to success in spite of the many demanding challenges they faced. The Leader’s Bookshelf synthesizes their responses to identify the top fifty books that can help virtually anyone become a better leader.

Each of the works – novels, memoirs, biographies, autobiographies, management publications – are summarized and the key leadership lessons extracted and presented. Whether individuals work their way through the entire list and read each book cover to cover, or read the summaries provided to determine which appeal to them most, The Leader’s Bookshelf will provide a roadmap to better leadership.

Highlighting the value of reading in both a philosophical and a practical sense, The Leader’s Bookshelf provides sound advice on how to build an extensive library, lists other books worth reading to improve leadership skills, and analyzes how leaders use what they read to achieve their goals. An efficient way to sample some of literature’s greatest works and to determine which ones can help individuals climb the ladder of success, The Leader’s Bookshelf is for anyone who wants to improve his or her ability to lead – whether in family life, professional endeavors, or within society and civic organizations.

Legacy: What the All Blacks Can Teach Us About the Business of Life
James Kerr

Buy “Legacy” at Marineshop.net

What The All Blacks Can Teach Us About The Business of Life

The All Blacks are the world’s most successful sporting outfit, undefeated in over 75% of their international matches over the last 100 years. What is the secret of their success? And what can we – as individuals, companies and teams – learn from them?

Champions do extra.
They sweep the sheds.
They follow the spearhead.
They keep a blue head.
They are good ancestors.

In Legacy, best-selling author James Kerr goes deep into the heart of the world’s most successful sporting team, the legendary All Blacks of New Zealand, to reveal 15 powerful and practical lessons for leadership and business.

Legacy is a unique, inspiring handbook for leaders in all fields, and asks: What are the secrets of success – sustained success? How do you achieve world-class standards, day after day, week after week, year after year? How do you handle pressure? How do you train to win at the highest level? What do you leave behind you after you’re gone?

What will be your legacy?

Machine, Platform, Crowd
Andrew McAfee
Erik Brynjolfsson

Buy “Machine, Platform, Crowd” at Marineshop.net

In The Second Machine Age, Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson predicted some of the far-reaching effects of digital technologies on our lives and businesses. Now they’ve written a guide to help readers make the most of our collective future. Machine | Platform | Crowd outlines the opportunities and challenges inherent in the science fiction technologies that have come to life in recent years, like self-driving cars and 3D printers, online platforms for renting outfits and scheduling workouts, or crowd-sourced medical research and financial instruments.

Non-Obvious
Rohit Bhargava

Buy “Non-Obvious” at Marineshop.net

How To Predict Trends And Win The Future

How are a men’s grooming brand and frustrated “stuck-at-work” dads leading a revolution in masculinity post #MeToo?

What can the decline of a global lingerie brand and corporate hackathons teach us about how fear can stifle innovation?

How does hiring “neuro-diverse” workers and creating empathetic shampoo bottles signal a dramatic shift toward compassion in the workplace?

For the past 9 years, marketing expert and Georgetown University Professor Rohit Bhargava has curated his best-selling list of non-obvious trends by asking the questions that most trend predictors miss.

In this all-new ninth edition, discover what more than a million readers already have: how to use the power of non-obvious thinking to grow your business and make a bigger impact in the world.

In total, the Non-Obvious 2019 edition features 15 all-new trends across 5 categories including Culture; Consumer Behavior, Marketing; Social Media, Media & Education, Technology; Design plus Economics; Entrepreneurship. The book also features a detailed section with a review and rating for more than 115 previously predicted trends, with longevity ratings for each.

As with the original version, this new edition of Non-Obvious also delves into the curation process the author has used for years to build his Trend Reports and takes readers behind the scenes of trend curation (much to the delight of past readers who have been asking about this for years), and show them the methodology they can use to predict the future for themselves.

Warfighting
USMC Staff

Buy “Warfighting” at Marineshop.net

Warfighting is an authentic American philosophy of action that will thrill the millions of fans of SunTzu’s The Art of War and Musashi’s The Book of Five Rings. This modern classic of strategy and philosophy is the quintessential guide to prevailing in competitive situations, be it war, work, play, or daily living.

Sometimes life is war and sometimes business is war and sometimes you need to call in the Marines. Over the past two hundred years, the Marines have developed a reputation for getting the job done – fearlessly, boldly, and taking no prisoners. What better role model for the hidden warriors in ourselves? What better advice to call on when the stakes are high and sensitivity just isn’t going to work?

Written in 1989 as a philosophical and strategic guide-book for the US. Marine Corps, Warfighting is a worthy successor to SunTzu’s The Art Of War. With clarity, brevity, and wisdom, it describes the basic forces at work in every competitive situation whether on the field of battle, in the boardroom, or in the courtroom. With twentieth-century technology and its emphasis on speed and versatility, the rules of war and competition have changed. Warfighting‘s exploration of maneuver warfare takes readers beyond Sun Tzu’s classic lessons and provides them a more thorough understanding of what it takes to fight and win in the modern world. Currency’s edition of Warfighting features interviews with famous former Marines including F. Lee Bailey, Ed McMahon, and Donald Regan. They tell how they have used the Marine Corps’ battle strategies of strength and straightforwardness as their secret weapons in every confrontation, whether at a corporate, departmental, or personal level.

A World in Disarray
Dr. Richard Haass

Buy “A World in Disarray” at Marineshop.net

American Foreign Policy and the Crisis of the Old Order

Things fall apart; the center cannot hold. The rules, policies, and institutions that have guided the world since World War II have largely run their course. Respect for sovereignty alone cannot uphold order in an age defined by global challenges from terrorism and the spread of nuclear weapons to climate change and cyberspace. Meanwhile, great power rivalry is returning. Weak states pose problems just as confounding as strong ones. The United States remains the world’s strongest country, but American foreign policy has at times made matters worse, both by what the U.S. has done and by what it has failed to do. The Middle East is in chaos, Asia is threatened by China’s rise and a reckless North Korea, and Europe, for decades the world’s most stable region, is now anything but. As Richard Haass explains, the election of Donald Trump and the unexpected vote for “Brexit” signals that many in modern democracies reject important aspects of globalization, including borders open to trade and immigrants.

In A World in Disarray, Haass argues for an updated global operating system – call it world order 2.0 – that reflects the reality that power is widely distributed and that borders count for less. One critical element of this adjustment will be adopting a new approach to sovereignty, one that embraces its obligations and responsibilities as well as its rights and protections. Haass also details how the U.S. should act towards China and Russia, as well as in Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. He suggests, too, what the country should do to address its dysfunctional politics, mounting debt, and the lack of agreement on the nature of its relationship with the world.

A World in Disarray is a wise examination, one rich in history, of the current world, along with how we got here and what needs doing. Haass shows that the world cannot have stability or prosperity without the United States, but that the United States cannot be a force for global stability and prosperity without its politicians and citizens reaching a new understanding.

Each Marine shall read a minimum of five books from the “Commandants Choice” or “Grade Level” sections each year. The Grade Level titles are separated into five levels for both enlisted Marines and officers. These levels coincide with specific ranks and Marines should attempt to read all titles within their level prior to proceeding to a higher level.

In addition to the reading list, Marines are highly encouraged to incorporate periodicals into their reading regimens. Scholarly and professionally oriented articles published by independent magazines and journals foster innovation, PME development, critical study of the profession of arms, and serious discussion regarding topics of interest to the Marine Corps. Professional publications inform debate on current, topical issues of relevance to the Marine Corps and promote intellectual growth of the individual Marine.

Sours: https://mca-marines.org/blog/resource/commandants-professional-reading-list/
Leadership Lessons from Gen. James Mattis (Ret.)

Mom in general, somehow, now all agitated and angry. Everyone screams at me and everyone in the house. - And where does she come from, knows all this.

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I didn't even wear a condom. He spoke various pleasant words, sometimes clapping on the ass. I remember saying: -Do you remember in the summer after the clean-up, how I plant you on a heap of leaves.



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