Review: You Are Free

You Are Free by Matthew Montague

My review on

Sea Story – Not for Everyone (which leaves more for me)

It’s obvious from the vastly different ratings here that this book isn’t for everyone. That may be because some readers were unwilling to give the second-person narrative style a chance. It is slightly unconventional, but is set in the present tense and is very fast-paced.

This is an account of a sailor on a modern surface ship with all the accompanying technical terms, acronyms, oxymorons and obscenities. However, the author added linked footnotes to help with those (except the obscenities, alas).

The tone is irreverent, the structure is very short chapters, and the story is very simple. Having been in the Navy myself, I could relate to much of the content. The descriptions were well-done and I found myself remembering things from long ago.

Overall, I found the characters interesting and life-like, except the protagonist. I wanted “you” to feel more emotion and I wanted to care more about “you.” That would have made the story more meaningful all around.

© Jan McClintock of We Need More Shelves

Spread the love

4 thoughts on “Review: You Are Free”

  1. Hello and thanks for reading my book. It was very experimental and published on a whim (the world of e-publishing) but a lot of people are reading it. Which I love. Have you read my other (more conventional) short stories? What did you think?


  2. The ship in this book was not a destroyer, sounded like an LHD. I found the narrative style easy to get into. The footnotes were a great hep in familiarizing me with the navy lingo. Although I spent years in the Navy reserve life in the fleet has it’s own vernacular. All together I liked it, thought the ending was sudden but fitting. I will check out more of Montague’s books and recommend it to my nephew who ships out to “great mistakes” in January, he seems to think he’ll walk out of a school a E-6, I left an E- 5 and that was after 6 years. Navy sure has changed.

  3. SK2 V, I hear you about the many changes since I’ve been active duty, as well (over 20 years ago now – yikes!). And thanks for the correction on the type of ship. I will make that fix now. Not sure where I got that…

Comments are closed.