Book Review: American Gun by Chris Kyle

“American Gun” by Chris Kyle is a captivating read on American history using ten firearms.  These ten firearms had a great impact on the birth of the nation and the growth and development as America became a super power.  Kyle is the author of “American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History.” This book, “American Gun,” was completed after his death by the strength of his wife Taya, who wrote the forward and acknowledgements. Chris Kyle tragically died while trying to do what he loved doing, “Help a veteran on his own road to recovery.”

Kyle very humbly chose ten firearms to give an excellent account of American history.  He allows other to disagree with him, but his expertise in police and military understanding make these weapons top candidates.  The ten firearms he chose are 1) the American Long Rifle; 2) the Spencer Repeater, 3) the Colt Single Action Revolver, 4) the Winchester 1873, 5) the 1903 Springfield, 6) the M1911 Army Pistol, 7) the Thompson Submachine Gun, 8) the M1 Garand Semi-Automatic Rifle, 9) the .38 Special Police Revolver and 10) the M16 Rifle. Kyle also wrote about many other firearms that compare to these weapons and served as proto-types to their development.

With each weapon, Kyle recorded excellent historical accounts of how the firearms were used.  Weaving in the stories and the weapon development will captivate every red-blooded American to consume this book.  Each of the riveting stories are well known in history, but Kyle brilliantly brings life to everyone from Sergeant York to Baby Face Nelson and to Collazo and Torresola. These last two planned a failed assassination attempt on President Truman.

If you have any enjoyment of firearms, you will completely enjoy this volume.  If you like history, you will appreciate the firearms that made history and were part of our lives. Kyle was the president of Craft International (, a world-class leader in training and security, and cofounded the FITCO Cares Foundation. As the book was drawing toward completion, Chris Kyle and his trusted friend Chad Littlefield died while trying to help a veteran. His personal motto was “it is our duty to serve those who serve us,” and he and Littlefiled died honoring this creed (book jacket). I salute Chris Kyle for his patriotism and his sacrificial willingness to help others until the tragic day of his death.


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