|I found this one in the remainder bin at the War Memorial. It's a biography (nobody writes their own autobiography anymore) of a womyn who served with "the Detachment", 14 Intelligence Unit, a secretive special forces unit that operates in civilian clothes in places like Northern Ireland, working alongside the more famous Special Air Service.|
The harrowing first third of the book details her upbringing as one of the working poor in a council flat, raised by a violent single mother (herself the victim of a wife-beating husband) constantly on the brink (or in the throes) or a nervous breakdown and how she eventually escapes into the British Navy.
The second third covers in meticulous detail the brutal, punishing training regimen that turns out operatives for one of the toughest and most dangerous assignments in the world. In the third, the book takes us down the streets and country roads of Northern Ireland, where anyone might be a terrorist and the special forces' job is hunting them down one by one. Our hero makes hand brake turns in a old Peugot with a baby seat in the back for camouflage, armed only with a 9mm Browning and an HK53 assault rifle. Her co-workers are sexist to the core, who gradually and grudgingly come to appreciate someone who can outdrink, outthink and outshoot them.