By: Eric Blehm
WaterBrook Press, 2012
Review by: Annette Ensz
Five years ago, Navy SEAL Adam Brown deployed to Kunar Province in Afghanistan. While the Special Forces soldiers around him packed extra ammunition when they left the base, he took a notepad. Brown slung his weapon on his back and knelt in the dirt by the feet of village children. He wrote down their shoe sizes. With the help of his wife, Kelley, and church members back home, he handed out over five hundred pairs of shoes during that tour.
The shoe story takes up about half a page in Fearless. It serves as an aside in a more harrowing context of Afghani battlegrounds and SEAL Team Six missions. But it sets the tone, helping the reader understand the type of heart Adam Brown possessed.
Brown’s story carries us from his grade school years to the day he dies in combat. This man’s passion for freedom inspires readers to brave their own inabilities and insecurities. While some profanity and coarse accounts infiltrate the tale, they make it easier for the reader to identify with Brown. A few bad decisions after he becomes a Christian eventually help to solidify his faith and marriage. As Brown learns to wrap his identity in Christ, he finds the courage to pursue a calling beyond what he allowed himself to imagine.
In this narrative, New York Times best-selling author Eric Blehm (The Only Thing Worth Dying For) sets out to tell a hero’s story. He stumbles on something better—a riveting tale of redemption. Through a series of interviews, Blehm pieces together snapshots of the SEAL’s life into a collage of salvation in action. The author’s simple style reveals a warrior who cares about family time more than bullets and his team more than his own life.
Blehm has written other biographical accounts of remarkable military men. So have many other authors: Marcus Luttrell, Mark Owen, Rorke Denver. But Adam Brown’s faith sets Fearless apart. His hope in Jesus Christ proves inseparable from the other aspects of his life. Brown’s final wishes included someone telling his entire testimony, from dark days of drug addiction and prison to his perseverance through to SEAL Team Six. His family sought out Blehm in hopes that “others might be inspired to seek faith and overcome their own struggles” (251).
The result: a straightforward testament of friends and family to the disciplined, funny, kind, courageous heart of Adam Brown and the God who created him fearless.