A gut-wrenching, beautiful memoir which explores toxic masculinity and the devastating consequences of war on one impressionable young soldier
Matt Young joined the Marine Corps aged eighteen, after a drunken night that culminated in him crashing his car into a fire hydrant. The teenage wasteland he fled followed him to the training bases of California. Young survived training and then three deployments to Iraq as an infantryman.
Eat the Apple is the searing and honest response to those years. Visceral, ironic, self-lacerating and ultimately redemptive, Young's story drops us unarmed into Marine Corps culture and lays bare the vulnerability of those on the front lines and the true, if often misguided, motivations that drove a young man to a life at war.
Tender and brilliantly written, Eat the Apple is a powerful coming-of-age story that explores toxic masculinity and maps the insane geography of our times.
Matt Young holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Miami University and is the recipient of fellowships with Words After War and the Carey Institute for Global Good. His work can be found in Tin House, Word Riot, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. He is a combat veteran, and lives in Olympia, Washington, where he teaches composition.