Extended Audio Sample

Download These Heroic, Happy Dead: Stories Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample These Heroic, Happy Dead: Stories Audiobook, by Luke Mogelson Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Luke Mogelson Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2016 ISBN: 9780451484253
Regular Price: $18.95 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $12.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

A dazzling debut that forms an immensely moving portrait of the war in Afghanistan and life in, and after, the army.

With his harrowing debut, Luke Mogelson provides an unsentimental, unflinching glimpse into the lives of those forever changed by war. Subtle links between these ten powerful stories, filled with narrators teetering on the edge and locations as far flung as Dahana, magnify the spectrum of the war’s effects on soldiers and those around them, and the violence that carries over from Afghanistan and bleeds into their everyday lives.

Troubled veterans first introduced as criminals in “To the Lake” and “Visitors” are shown later in “New Guidance” and “Hellfire,” in the fighting that shaped their futures. A seemingly insignificant soldier in “New Guidance” becomes the protagonist of “Dogging Bear,” where his self-interest has fatal consequences. The fate of a hapless Gulf War vet who reenlists in “Sea Bass” is revealed in “Peacetime,” the story of his equally self-destructive National Guard buddy. A shady contractor job gone wrong in “A Beautiful Country” is a news item for a reporter in “Total Solar.” Shifting in time and narrative perspective—from the home front to active combat, between experienced leaders, flawed infantrymen, a mother, a child, an Afghan-American translator, and a civilian journalist—these stories take the full measure of the human scale of war.

Here is an evocative, deeply powerful work about duty, loss, and the redemptive
force of storytelling, charting the legacy of violence and the plight of people hungry for atonement. Written with remarkable insight, These Heroic, Happy Dead heralds the arrival of an extraordinary new talent.

Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • Ten well-crafted stories of people scarred by war. . . . Mogelson avoids dwelling on trauma but circles it constantly, carefully exploring its fringes. The New York Times Book Review
  • Commanding and resonant, deeply felt and rich in visceral detail. . . . The best stories in These Heroic, Happy Dead are arguably among the finest the genre has produced. The New Republic
  • We can now induct Luke Mogelson into that vital band of warrior storytellers—from Tim O’Brien and Michael Herr to Phil Klay and Elliot Ackerman—who, with great eloquence and moral courage, have labored, on both the battlefield and the page, to keep America honest about its foolish wars. Bob Shacochis
  • These Heroic, Happy Dead will undoubtedly serve as a new model by which war stories are measured. Consequence
  • Masterful . . . Mogelson’s first book of stories is pristine. David Means, Salon.com
  • The author’s refusal to condemn or condone his characters’ troubled lives gives this collection its particular power. Instead, Luke Mogelson bears witness to his soldiers and their actions, and in doing so honors their full humanity. Reminiscent of Hemingway's In Our Time,  These Heroic, Happy Dead is an extraordinary debut, and it deserves a wide and appreciative audience. Ron Rash
  • “These Heroic, Happy Dead, is the best and most haunting book about the Afghan war that I’ve read. . . . This book hums with momentum and tension. Joshua Partlow, Publishers Weekly
  • A stunning debut from a major talent; this book is up there with the best of modern war stories, from Hemingway to Tim O'Brien. This is a book which is going to last. Philipp Meyer
  • The men and women in These Heroic, Happy Dead are object lessons in what makes a book haunting and unforgettable.  The Paris Review Daily
  • Mogelson manages to do something beautiful and new in his work. . . . In addition to the excellent writing, Mogelson’s stories impress even more because his skill is matched with significant personal knowledge or impressive research on subjects. The Rumpus
  • Like Denis Johnson and Thom Jones, there are shards of grim humor in some of these stories, but for the most part it’s a merciless reckoning with war’s ignobility. . . . Mogelson captures the unnerving beauty that follows devastation. San Francisco Chronicle
  • Luke Mogelson’s stories kicked me straight in the chest. The poisonous effects of war on soldiers is one of literature’s most ancient subjects, yet Mogelson writes with such freshness and fire that you feel new ground being broken, you feel the tremors of the secret pain that binds together Mogelson’s cast, and you feel the giant rumble of talent. Jonathan Miles
  • “Beautiful and spare. . . . Eloquent. . . . Mogelson is a genius of the ordinary. The Buffalo News
  • A New York Times Book Review Editor's Choice
  • Memorably and darkly funny. . . . Mogelson gives a nuanced, empathetic look into lives irrevocably altered by conflict. . . . His writing is reminiscent of Hemingway’s. . . . The reader trusts Mogelson’s steady, lucid prose to outline the inner lives of these men. The Nation
Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author
Luke Mogelson is a contributing writer at The New York Times Magazine and a recipient of the National Magazine Award in 2014. His fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The Hudson Review, The Missouri Review, and The Kenyon Review. He lives in Paris.