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The Reluctant Partisan

October 22, 2014

I’m going to leave this here. If you’ve ordered and read The Reluctant Partisan, Volume One: The Guerrilla, feel free to leave comments, positive or negative, in the comments below.


From → Uncategorized

  1. koldsteel762 permalink

    Are there still books available ?

  2. david permalink

    No I have not read it, but that was a callous comment left by E. No one is forcing him to buy a copy at any price. Few people know the work that goes into writing a book. By the way, are copies still available?

  3. Quietman permalink

    Finally: Task, Conditions, Standard. Thanks. Raised morale a bit, hereabouts.

  4. ROBERT b BUTLER permalink

    I believe I ordered and left a deposit for your book. Pretty sure I don’t have it, but have been in and out of hospital, and honestly do not remember if it was to be in hard copy, on line, or what I was supposed to do. I know I wanted a hard copy, but may just have deposited on the E-book. If you could tell me what to check or what to do next, I would be grateful. Thanks, Bob Butler.

  5. I ordered the ebook version. I have to say it is a very motivating book with lots of real how-to’s to get yourself and your group up to snuff.The thing with this book, is Mosby lays out how he would train an irregular force. You get proficient in what his book teaches and you will have a better chance of surviving TEOTWAWKI. This book is probably my favorite. I didn’t realize how much I didn’t know. We are trying to implement the training in this book within our group. The problem for us comes down to PT. You have guys who are in great shape, then you have those who are a long way from being in shape. Pretty sure Mosby has mentioned PT before.

    • Also to add, if you ain’t in shape or you “think” you are shape, if you implement the training Mosby lays out. You really find out.

  6. Bradford C joy permalink

    Got my Copy,,, haven’t gotten into it yet. Looking forward to snow falling, coal stove burning, a cup of coffee and the recliner with the book in hand. I KNOW I’m gonna like it,,, and will learn a thing or two. Then I’ll go out in the snow and cold and do PT!

  7. Volunteerveteran permalink

    I have finished about 2/3 of the book, skipping around in a completely random way. The level of detail and the amount of knowledge shared in this book is amazing – for an admitted “knuckle dragger” Mosby is a smart mofo. This book is better than any relative books that I have read – more real world fact, than hypothetical opinion. I highly recommend…full knife hand!

  8. John, The book is what I would call inspirational. I have read similar books and still found a wealth of information that had not been touched in the others. From my perspective I would rate this a must read. Great job and I look forward to the next installment.

  9. G Young permalink

    Great book or should I say training manual. It’s packed full of great information and no fluff. If you’re debating getting a copy, don’t. Well worth the money.

  10. Troy permalink

    It occupies the number one slot in my array of books on the subject, it’s absolute gold. Very well written and organized, I really appreciate that it’s not littered with fluff- every word has an instructional purpose. I’ve purchased another copy for a Brother, and will probably buy more copies to pass along to those who could appreciate it.

    • I agree 100% Troy. What I love is Mosby lays it out there that if you want yourself and your group to have the best chance of surviving a confrontation, this is how you do it. Not only how to do it, but to also be able to hold every member accountable to a certain set of standards.

  11. For those of you with no prior .mil experience, or those of you that do but don’t have the depth of knowledge and skill required to train up a civilian self-defense group, this manual is for you. Stop pissing and moaning about the cost and just get the fucker.

    If you are like most folks, you have tried to read through the ranger handbook (SH21-76), or the Infantry Platoon (FM 7-8) but if you don’t have a strong frame of reference to work from, it becomes a bit overwhelming trying to decipher all the mil-speak, or you understand the concept of WHAT to do, but lack the HOW to do it. This is where JM’s book comes in. It will explain and expand upon what the big army manuals have outlined, hanging meat on the sometimes bare bones. He also goes the extra mile and explains when the doctrine of a self-defense group differs from an organized army, and how that affects the T,T,P’s necessary to defend your home, neighborhood, or retreat. For example learning how to fire and maneuver with semi-auto battle rifles as a base of fire, rather than belt-fed machine guns.

    And if this wasn’t enough, the kicker is he breaks it down into key skills, and then explains how to teach it to someone, as performance-based learning objectives. This is completely missing from any other book on the subject. Knowing something and being able to teach it to someone else are two totally separate skills. Not only are you getting the information, but you also get the template for teaching it to others. So while you can learn this stuff from any good light infantry NCO, having a guy with a ranger and SF background, gives you the knowledge AND the system for training your group, in an unconventional warfare setting.

    So if you think it would be prudent to train a little group of people for those awkward social moments, you know, like the collapse of western civilization, this book will be worth it’s weight in gold. Literally.

    My wish list for Vol 2: Go into how to set up and run a complete home or retreat security plan. More info on how to “repel boarders” when under attack. And last resort, how to evac the home/retreat under fire. I would think this would be very similar to an “A” camp, out in indian territory. Without crew-served weapons, and explosives. : (

  12. David Bowser permalink

    I haven’t completed the book yet. Next chapter is “Hide and seek for Adults”. I usually average one book a month, So I would say I’m a fairly avid reader. Like anyone who reads a fair amount, I can give an opinion on how it rates to other works that are published. In my opinion the book reads and flows well (I was worried that it wouldn’t). It’s organized well. It is easy to understand even without prior service under your belt. There are some typos but it isn’t a big deal for me.

    Reading this book is helping me remember everything I forgot about the basics. I purchased this book for a couple reasons. 1) How can I apply what i learned in the Army for what I think is a possible scenario in our future. 2) To re-learn and remember things I forgot. 3) I was curious about the thought process of another 18 series and about what he found works and doesn’t work in Combat. How does he recommend what works in combat to what is relevant for me in a possible state side partisan scenario? 4) I earned an SF tab but only spent a short time on a team (93-95) So I was just plain curious on if or how much had changed tactics wise since I was in. Hardly anyone had combat experience when I was in save for a few guys from Battalion, So I was curious and thirsty for knowledge from someone who had actually been downrange.

    I believe this book accomplishes what it was designed for….. To give the common everyday guy a guide to conduct Guerrilla warfare. What the every day guy can expect and how he can train and what to train to be effective. It’s done in a way that’s easy to understand. To the point without a lot of fluff.

  13. geewhizzzkid permalink

    I personally think the book was as good as it could have gotten, no boring details or anything. Most of it was pretty much what I’ve read on the blog with a bunch more detail and emphasis added. The biggest thing I liked about the the book was the fact that weren’t really too many pictures because I tend to just look at them and move on. Max V’ s book had a lot and I had to force myself to actually read the fucking thing. Also, I liked the “train the trainer” aspect because that helped me understand everything better. Finally, you got me really engaged in reading it, which is a huge plus.

    Despite all the good, here’s some constructive criticism: spiral bound and large print would be really nice. If you are going to make those changes soon, I’m buying another.

    If I could do it over, I would have bought two. And here’s why: I kept wanting to dog ear, write, and highlight everything. But, I need to keep it neat for when I loan it out.

    In short, we loved the book and just keep on keeping on man…..

  14. One Son permalink

    I haven’t yet ordered the most recent version of the book, but I did order the original which I received a year ago. Frankly, this is my “go to” book on training. I took a course with Mosby, then have backed that up with the book. Now, bear in mind, I’ve never been in the military, just a redneck with a serious love of guns and such. Sounds like the most recent edition is far more polished, but I highly recommend you get your hands on any copy you can.

  15. RobRoySimmons permalink

    What the above guys have said

  16. Wes permalink

    The book is great. I can’t fucking wait to try a cric with a house key in the woods hahaha. Really though, the book is worth buying I have no military experience but I would suggest to read the ranger handbook before hand. learning some of the basics from the ranger book made it easy to understand and follow a lot of what was going on in John’s book. There may be a handful of things in the book that you know already, (physical fitness and weapons handling basics mostly) but unless your one of these certified badass there will be a lot you don’t know. I look forward to the next book. I hope it comes sooner than later. John good job, and thanks man.

  17. Jay permalink

    I would love to comment, however, I have yet to receive my book which was ordered 4 weeks ago Sunday through Forward Observer. Tried to contact John several times with no avail. YMMV

    • freewanderer1 permalink

      Jay, send him another email, he should get back to you within a day or two. Book so far is solid, I’m in grad school now, thats my excuse for not finishing it, but the parts I read are pretty good, up to the rifle drills, then I sort of fazed out, realizing I need to reanct the movements, or I need to get real into it and dismantle the book into a spiral aja I need to buy another one soon.I’m former mil and can tell the book is pretty solid and not too technical and dry like the usmc mcis or fms.

  18. Andrew permalink

    I have also yet to receive my copy, ordered through FO mag. Order confirmed 18 days ago on 10/5. I understand you’re not Amazon, but an emailed notice that it actually shipped would be nice. Eagerly awaiting it, from what people have been saying it’s exactly what I need.

  19. Jack permalink

    I’m in the same boat waiting for the book but haven’t asked anyone yet.

  20. freewanderer1 permalink

    Jay, email him again i’m pretty sure for others reasons he did not get your email, he’s pretty good for it. read it as far as the rifle drills, then I fazed out and realized I needed another book so I can make one a spiral and reenact the movements to a T. Havent read it all, due to being in grad school and my 40 hour plus deskrider gig. Im former mil and can say this book is not dry like the usmc fms or mci’s.


  21. Comrade X permalink

    Great book, John is a lot smarter than he looks, and he does know how to communicate. It is now on my bookshelf between Failure of Civility and Contact.

  22. t f A-t permalink

    First rate. If you could only have 1 book for reference -this is it. Nothing like those boring FMs that were a chore to read. JM combines basic and advanced tactical doctrine and personal anecdotes into an entertaining reading experience for all. This is one of those books that won’t be collecting dust after it’s read one time. It could be called The Partisans Bible.

  23. Rich Young permalink

    Loved the book. The info contained within is invaluable. Needs an index. Still has numerous misspellings and several unintended (I think) ideas, such as not putting your weapon back into a magazine pouch when dropping and retaining a partial magazine.

  24. Brett Lively permalink

    I received my book from John with no problem . Four weeks is a long time,but the book is well worth the wait. Doing anything with FO is a big pain in the ass.

    • David Bowser permalink

      Personally, I thought that ordering the book through FO was a lot easier than getting a money order and sending it via snail mail. Yes, it took about four weeks to get but i would rather click and pay than run and get a money order.

  25. Matt in K.C. permalink


    He stays really busy. He won’t do you wrong.


  26. Texas Frederic Bastiat permalink

    The reluctant partisan is a great resource- it’s more than just the ranger handbook. It’s written in plain English, has copious humor and personable tidbits that make it interesting.

    I found the topics easy to understand, despite my lack of military service, primarily due to the quality of the writing and to my attendance to the Arizona patrolling class. So, in some ways, I know how Mosby communicates in person, the intensity of the drills, and the importance of good PT.

    I can credit Mosby to being the source that really motivated me to start lifting heavy barbells, when I came across his blog a little more than a year ago. After meeting him in person and going through the humbling battle drills in Arizona, my efforts were redoubled. I’ve since torn the ass out of three of my favorite business slacks due to the growth of my flutes and hams from squats and deadlifts! (Worth the cost of new pants). I’ve also put on about 15 lbs of muscle since the Arizona class in February. One of the great things about the book is that I even changed up my daily PT program even more after reading that section in the book- I moved away from strict overhead press in favor of push press (for the triple extension), and substituted bench press for another leg day to do squat cleans. And I do a lot heavier metcons now, trying to incorporate a 40lb weight vest into everything.

    In summary, the book is great. It covers a lot of ground, and even provides some solid outlines for teaching folks how to shoot. It goes through the details of troop leading procedures and and other tasks that aren’t as clear in the military manuals.

    It’s now our standard reference for security, patrolling, PT, and individual skills

    Looking forward to future volumes from Mosby

    • Texas Frederic Bastiat permalink

      I should probably clarify that I meant “glutes and hams”, and that I tore the pants when getting in and out of my truck.

  27. HarryNettles permalink

    It is a great resource John. I am savoring every word. I was not a ground pounder during my career but am a warrior at heart. I am working with a small tribe and developing some skill sets you outline in the book. Thanks for all of the great info.

    Harry “The Trainer”

  28. Heimdall permalink

    If you have no military experience whatsoever, this book is the training blueprint to get you up to snuff as a basic guerrilla.

    If you were in the miltary, but your primary job wasn’t training locals to become guerrillas, this book is your training curriculum to bring locals up to snuff as basic guerrillas.

    Overall the book is excellent. Negatives: There are some typos, he doesn’t spell out some acronyms, I would prefer a sturdier cover. These really aren’t that bad.
    Positives: Covers a LOT of ground, excellent choice of subjects for chapters, chapters progress in the manner I would teach them.

    This is a great book. I hope Volume 2 is about developing/running the Auxiliary or the Underground.

    And on a side note, I know the gentleman who wrote about being excited to do a cric in the field was joking, but here is my 2 cents. I’ve done them on live pigs. A LOT, and I was trained by some of the best SOF medics there are. And let me tell you, if I’m right there when you get a crush injury/gsw to your face AND I’ve got the scalpel and nasal pharangeal to use on you, you have MAYBE a 50% chance of me killing you with the procedure. You’re joking, so haha, but please go to a live tissue course.

    • Wes permalink

      Yes I was joking, and I would not try to do any invasive procedure that I have no training or credentials to perform… It was only a joke because of how outrageous it sounded in the book about using a key.

  29. ghoster permalink

    Any chance of shipping this book into Canada in the near future? I checked the shop and the only shipping is US domestic.

  30. Daniel permalink

    Buy it. (no seriously).

    I already commented about the book in another thread, but, to say again, it is well worth a read; in my case, I read it more than once. Mine has been given the higlighter marker and postit flag treatment, like any other outstanding reference.

  31. Wheelhouse permalink

    I was reading the book sections info online by Mosby and at the bottom of the page he mentions a hardback version. I don’t see different versions in their store – for those of you who have the book, is it paperback or hardback?

    • It’s a hard COPY version. It’s a trade paperback type cover. It’s designed to go in a cargo pocket or rucksack so guys can use it in the field while they’re training.

  32. Sled238 permalink

    Perhaps for the undecided I can offer some thoughts.
    1. This ain’t no knocked together cut and paste bullshit. There is logical progression and flow that tells me Mr Mosby spent a LOT of time organizing the structure of the info.

    2. When it shows up in the mail, walk straight to your desk and get a highlighter before you even open it. This isn’t a book where you rip three pages out and you have 90 percent still in hand.

    3. Information dense. No fruit loops here, boys, this is meat. Some pages are going to take multiple readings, not because of poor writing, but due to semi-complex items being unraveled so that you know HOW to issue an operations order, as well as WHY your op order is structured the way it is.
    If you are not .mil you will start to see to how these things fit together.

    4.the appendices (for my classmates, that the stuff in the back of the book you never read) are very much part of the learning. Ignore it at your dissatisfaction, because it will begin to instruct you in how to instruct.

    5. Ok, the negatives: somehow the author- who has never met me and doesn’t even live in an adjacent time zone – failed to personally autograph the title page with something along the lines of “to the greatest dude that ever walked and kicked ass in the twentieth AND twenty first centuries; much love ( but not too much! Don’t ask don’t tell,) you humble and most obedient servant John Mosby”. A minor quibble, and really beneath my notice, but still….
    Oh , and it would have been nice if he would have at least gave a passing nod to working out, but I guess he felt it hypocritical to suggest that, with fries in one hand and donuts in the other.
    (Ok, people, if you’ve never read anything by this guy, I’m gonna warn you: he has a……..THING….about preaching the goodness of physical training. Seriously).

    Yes it is expensive. Like two or three rifle mags, or a couple boxes of ammo. Wait, I bought THOSE and didn’t bitch, and most of that stuff is gone! Huh, funny how that worked…..

    I will leave you with this: there is SOMETHING in the book you NEED to know, and don’t.

  33. chefjon permalink

    Just got the book today. The knowledge looks impressive. The font? I need to invest in a magnifier to read it. What is it? 6pt type?

    If you intend to use the knowledge, the $70 will seem like the best deal you EVER got. If you’re sitting in your mom’s basement with an orange dick, just buy more nylon.

    • Believe it or not, it is 12-point font. Unfortunately, shrinking the pdf to fit the print size reduced it more than anticipated. Sorry. But, look at the bright side….it’ll fit in a ruck.

      • chefjon permalink

        No worries about “the bright side” here! The content looks amazing. Just what I’ve been looking for…for awhile now.

        You should let people know that it isn’t really “358 pages ” though. If the type was larger, I think would be over 1k, at least!

        I’m very satisfied with my purchase. Thanks again!

  34. A Non E Mouse permalink

    Good books are hard to find. More often than not regurgitation is what gets published. Not so after beginning to read Volume One. I appreciate your candor and have found abundant value with every turn of the page. I look forward to purchasing the second volume.
    To those who are easily offended by an honest assessment from a professional percpective of the sad state of affairs and what each of us can actually do to prepare ourselves for the hard work that’s coming, this book is not for you. In fact save your money because manscaping products are expensive.
    But if you are tired of yelling at the liars on TV (even if they could hear you, they don’t care) and are exhausted from trying to convince those around you, just stop. Buy the book. Stop talking, and read it. Then read it again and get it through your own head that sitting on the couch is exactly where they want you to be.

  35. JoeC permalink

    Let me start by saying thanks.Your book is a shit ton of info , all of it good,solid, and ,most importantly, easy to read . Your professionalism and patriotism are unquestionable . I appreciate the 4 letter words very fucking much as they are among some of my favorite in the English language as well and help to emphasize points you are trying to make , we have that in common . As a former combat arms soldier and voracious reader I give it 2 thumbs up . Looking forward to volume 2 . JC

  36. Morgan Ryan permalink

    Dude – I tried everything humanly possible to buy your book and the website WOULD NOT allow me to do so. Said it was in my cart, but it wasn’t multiple times.
    Heard good things, maybe I’m too late, I don’t know. I just saw it on Survivalblog, maybe that was old.

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