• The History of the SAS

  • As Told by the Men on the Ground
  • By: Chris Ryan
  • Narrated by: Jamie Parker
  • Length: 11 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History, Military
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

Forged to fight guerrillas in the sweltering jungles of Malaya.

Tasked with storming mountain strongholds in the desert. 

Trained to hunt down the world's most wanted terrorists. 

This is the extraordinary story of 22 SAS. 

The history of the modern SAS is one of the great successes of postwar Britain. Since it was revived in 1950 to combat Communist insurgents, the Regiment has gone from strength to strength, fighting covert wars in Oman, Borneo, Northern Ireland, the Falklands, the Persian Gulf and beyond. In the process, it has become one of the most indispensable, and at times controversial, units in the British army.

Today, the SAS is regarded as the world's leading Special Forces unit, renowned for its demanding Selection course and its relentless ability to adapt to the changing nature of warfare. More than anything else, however, it is the determination and ingenuity of the SAS soldiers that has made the Regiment what it is today. 

Drawing on his extensive network of contacts and his own experiences, Chris Ryan tells the story of the men on the ground. From the earliest patrols in the Malayan jungle, through to the storming of the Iranian embassy, the daring raids behind enemy lines in the Gulf War and up-to-minute missions to capture or kill notorious terrorists, this is the gripping, no-holds-barred account of Regiment operations. Above all, it is a story of elite soldiers fighting and triumphing against seemingly impossible odds.

©2019 Chris Ryan (P)2020 Hodder & Stoughton Ltd

What listeners say about The History of the SAS

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Excelent book about the history of the SAS

well written and narrated, not focus on just personal experiences but in the regiment as a whole. incredible facts about the evolution of the squadron. I highly recommend!!

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To the point account

Great to hear a SF operator have such deep knowledge of history and cover these in honest, matter of fact tales. The calling and dedication of any soldier risking their lives to protect those that they do not know can never be taken for granted, sharing these stories is the only way of giving people a glimpse into their realm.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-01-20

If you have even the slightest interest in the UKSF..this is the one.

This book is exactly what I was hoping it would be.. Only reason not given absolute full marks would be because Chris Ryan isn’t narrating himself. With that being said, the narrator for this is excellent and head and shoulders above the majority of others I hear. Sounds like he’s telling you a story rather than reading a story.
Excellent audiobook.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Me®
  • 02-05-20

Narration Nuisance

The acronym SAS is used around 3 million and 6 times in this book but in 3 million of the 3 million and 6 times the narrator pronounces it S ai S.
For what reason I do not know, but it gets annoying rather quickly. Surely the author had a listen before release and could have told him it pronounced S A S?
Liked the book but the narrator unnecessarily made it hard to listen to in more than short spells.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-17-20

Gritty, detailed and interesting.

Focuses on details most skip over when talking about the SAS as well as delivering a clean and detailed account of the history of the SAS without overwhelming the reader. Easy to digest, well written and thoroughly interesting.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Vinces
  • 03-15-20

compelling listen from beginning to end

An interesting account of the lives of the SAS soldiers and the challenges. Well narrated keeps you engaged .

2 people found this helpful

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  • craig capewell
  • 05-13-20

Brilliant!!

Really great listen. Thoroughly enjoyed listening to the amazing achievements of the betst SF regiment in the world.

1 person found this helpful

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  • John Young
  • 04-30-20

Brilliant

I have listen to this book twice now and will listen again very soon. The books cover so much and I never did know what was in then hangers in Aldergrove when I was there, just known as Group

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-23-20

Look no further

Outstanding history of the modern post-WW2 SAS, full of anecdotes and brilliantly narrated by former Regiment man Chris Ryan.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kevin
  • 04-01-20

Great Proud History

Good in site to the SAS on the challenges of modern warfair and the historic struggle with those at the top of armed forces who were happy to send ill equipped soldiers to battle with 99% chance of fatalities.
Thankfully the moden soldier is more protected

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  • David
  • 11-18-21

Excellent

This is one of the best military books I’ve read or listened to. Perhaps there could have been more about the long range desert group during WW2 but that’s a minor criticism because the book covers WW2 (briefly) through to modern times.
Here’s a recommendation to follow this up: Killing Rommel by Steven Pressfield.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-10-21

Chris Ryans at his best.....

Chris Ryans best work bar none.... 2nd best book on the regiment ive ever read! Jamie Parker dose this story justice. 100% recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-07-21

Nothing new here

Yet another retelling of the history of the British SAS. A bit too much ' in my day' to make it a worthwhile military history. Leans heavily on other sources. The author clearly does not like officers as a class taking the opportunity to belittle them at every opportunity.

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  • Ben Doyle-Cox Platypus
  • 01-10-20

SAS history wrap up

Chris Ryan has done a nice job of putting together some of the history of 22 SAS,
Its interesting to hear his personal views on some aspects.