Good Stuff! Mr. Holmes and 13 Hours, the book

Earlier this month I watched Mr. Holmes.


It left me with this fine peace. With this feeling of goodness and light, in spite of, or probably because of, a number of poignant moments. It also surprised me.

To write a story like this, to give people this kind of gift…

What a wonderful, powerful thing.

Now, it was not a thriller. It’s not an episode of Sherlock or Elementary. It’s not a murder mystery. It reminds me of Saving Mr. Banks most, but also of Miss Potter, maybe even The King’s English. It has that kind of tempo.

Basically, Sherlock Holmes is a much older man. He’s retired. And there’s a case he’s trying to solve. But, again, this isn’t a murder mystery. This story is about Sherlock himself and wisdom and the beauty of change whenever it occurs.

The story lingered with me, and I avoided reading or watching anything else for a few days to savor it. Give yourselves a treat. Watch this wonderful story.


The book 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi was the answer to so many questions.

13_Hours_ZuckhoffWant really happened in Benghazi?

What we’re we doing there?

Who are the brave men who tried to save the ambassador?

It was also a thrilling read in the tradition of Marcus Luttrell’s Lone Survivor. As such, it purposely avoids the political aspect of the incident. It’s not about what the officials of the United States government did, said, or knew, or the political firestorm that ensued.

It’s not a hit piece on Clinton and Obama, nor is it any kind of defense. Instead it simply documents the events on the ground in those last 13 hours, relying most heavily on what the five American security contractors who rushed to give aid said happened. Those men–two former Marines, two former SEALs, and a former Army Ranger—teamed up with Mitchell Zuckoff, the writer, to simply set the record straight.

I couldn’t put the book down. Not only because the book’s well-written and the characters and situation are compelling, but also because of the insight it shared into some key dynamics within Libya itself. For example, it helps you understand why the revolt against Muammar Gaddafi centered in Benghazi, not Tripoli. It also touches on some of the currents inside these Muslim-majority countries close to the epicenter of Sunni extremism—Egypt and Saudi Arabia–so volatile. And it shares details, large and small, as only those who experience such things first hand can.

If you want a fascinating account of really happened on the ground in Benghazi, get this book.


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