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  • First into Action

  • A Dramatic Personal Account of Life Inside the SBS
  • By: Duncan Falconer
  • Narrated by: Duncan Falconer
  • Length: 13 hrs and 39 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (241 ratings)

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First into Action cover art

First into Action

By: Duncan Falconer
Narrated by: Duncan Falconer
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Summary

This unique, gripping memoir is essential listening for anyone interested in the Special Forces and how they operate.

The Special Boat Service (SBS) has long been the forgotten sibling of British Special Forces, but no longer. Duncan Falconer's grippingly personal memoir finally lifts the lid on life, loss, training and operations in the toughest unit of them all—the SBS.

From joining up as a teenager, through SBS recruitment, training, and operational detachments, First into Action takes us on a journey through the SBS's history, operations and tactics seen through the lens of Duncan Falconer's remarkable story.

The SBS draws its manpower from the Royal Navy and Royal Marine Commando Units, and the Royal Marines are the oldest and most battle-honoured regiment in the world. First into Action is the first Special Boat Services memoir written from the inside.

©2022 Duncan Falconer (P)2022 Bonnier Books UK

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What listeners say about First into Action

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Much needed Account of the SBS

Although the author mentions that this is not an autobiography, His has certainly been an interesting story, I recall joining in the 70’s & when I was 19 i was clueless.


Well done Royal -!-

6 people found this helpful

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A Military Must Read

This book is captivating and read in an excellent manner by the modest, honest author.

3 people found this helpful

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Enjoyed from start to finish

Really enjoyed, great stories from the troubles in NI. Was hoping for slightly more recent conflict stories but still fantastic!

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An interesting story

I have always had a great respect for the SBS throughout their history. It is difficult in getting a book on the Squadron as the writer states there have been many written about the SAS but few telling the skills and bravery of these operators. I felt it was a pity to include so much about the SF works in Northern Ireland, i can see the interest in those not from the province but anyone growing up there through “the troubles” will be aware of what was going on.

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Good book but not the most dynamic reader

Really enjoyed the book and can remember reading this when I first passed out of CTC training many years ago, still remains as good today as it was back then but young Mr Falconer is a little flat as a reader at times.

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Superb account of real heroes

As an ex army infantry vet and having served in the troubles, I encountered these bearded mystery men coming in and out of private areas of camps getting into our vehicles in the middle of knowhere but never really knew the story. Like most I assumed SAS or 14 INT, little did we know. Thank you

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Brilliant

Very funny at times
Really well delivered
Fascinating story

It was an absolute pleasure to listen to this one.
I usually listen to audio books either on a run or before sleep. I was so gripped by this story I haven't slept in two days. It was very much worth it - many thanks!

I enjoyed the stories so much I have been telling them all to my partner. Will be listening again.

I would recommend this book to anyone.

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Really engaging listen

Not a “ hey look at me , shoot-em up “ book just a very straightforward account of this man’s life in the SBS , he has an axe to grind regarding how another unit get credited for SBS missions but it seems well founded. Well recommended even if your not a regular SF fan .

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inspirational listen

Having read the book years ago It was fantastic to relive the tale with the man that was actually there.
I'll keep this book (in paperback) on my shelf and will read it with my son one day in the hope he can be inspired by such honourable people and live a life of such integrity and professionalism.

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What a read

This is the best real world story of the special boat service I have read, having said that there aren’t many. The story of driving around country roads in the dark while tapping out Morse code with one hand and trying not to crash amazed me.That is but one story of many. I still have the original book that was released in 1999 and take it away with me on my travels obviously in the book there is no reference to Covid and as the author says he has added a few things in the audiobook that weren’t in the book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Don Currie
  • 29-12-22

Best I’ve ever read

This book is the best account of an operative’s life in an elite unit that I’ve ever read. It also gives deep insight into an organization that is perhaps least known in the world of special forces.

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  • Mark L.
  • 23-12-22

Great listen

An excellent insight into relative lessor known special forces group. Good stories both happy and tragic events.