Book Feature: Trained in Hell, Living in Heaven by Timothy Segrest

by | Sep 30, 2020 | Book Feature | 0 comments

Trained in Hell, Living in Hell by Timothy Segrest is a gripping novel that mirrors the realities of many PTSD patients.

Tim Segrest’s works are about his time in the military and his Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). His first two books, Perfect Flaws and Reflections of PTSD with my Perfect Flaws, both deal extensively with PTSD and the time he spent in the armed forces. The poetry that Tim wrote in these books has helped him overcome his personal battles. Since then, Tim has been producing several other works. One of them is the novel Trained in Hell, Living in Heaven by Segrest. For the first time, Tim Segrest shares to us a different masterpiece. Let us take a closer look.

An Autobiographical Novel

Trained in Hell, Living in Heaven is sort of an autobiographical novel written by Timothy Segrest. It is written in the form of a memoir narrated by a former US Special Forces sniper, Tim. The narrator shares his journey in the military beginning with the murder incident of someone that Tim felt deserved to die. Then we follow his enlistment in the military, private martial arts training in Japan, and his training in the Special Forces. The narrator also shares his participation in covert or black operations, his physical and medical condition, and a discovery that will change his life forever.

The main character of the book is Sgt.Timothy Segrest. The fictional Segrest is the protagonist and the story is told through his POV (point of view). The character shares the same name as the author. However, this does not mean that the whole story is reflective of the author’s personal experiences despite several shared experiences. As the story progresses, we see Tim as a dedicated member of the army. One day, Tim goes on a mission and in which the actual target was a civilian teenage girl. Worse, Tim realizes that the US government lied to the sniper team and knew all along the target was a civilian. This led Tim to suffer a moral crisis and lost his sense of self-control as a result of this incident. This dark incident and the deterioration of his physical and mental well-being contributed to his post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The incident changes Tim and despite being a caring and sensitive man, he is consumed by anger because of what he knows. Tim takes these dark memories with him as he lives a civilian life with his wife.

In many ways, the story of the fictional character mirrors that of the author. However, they are not entirely based on author Tim Segrest’s experiences. Nonetheless, Trained in Hell, Living in Heaven is without a doubt a very personal work. Segrest speaks to his readers from a very familiar place. It is also a narrative that is shared by many of the members of the military, especially those who are suffering from PTSD. Overall, Tim Segrest’s Train in Hell, Living in Heaven is a remarkable read.

About the Author

Tim Segrest was born in 1962 in Whittier, Ca. He graduated high school from la Mirada high school in 1980. After working for drafting pipe layout and design, Segrest joined the military in 1983. He began as a jet engine mechanic in the Air Force. Later, he transferred to the army where he was trained as a sniper. In 2004, Segrest was medically boarded out in 2004 because of a degenerative spine disease that affected his back.

Tim began writing in 2004 and his works have helped him overcome depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Tim has been married three times. He currently resides in Yuma, Arizona with his third wife.


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