Bio & Bylines

0012Brian Castner is a nonfiction writer, former Explosive Ordnance Disposal officer, and veteran of the Iraq War. He is the author of All the Ways We Kill and Die, forthcoming in the spring of 2016, and the war memoir The Long Walk, which was adapted into an opera and named an Amazon Best Book for 2012. His writing has appeared at The New York Times, Wired, Outside, The Daily Beast, and on National Public Radio. In 2014, he received a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting to cover the Ebola outbreak in Liberia, filing stories for Foreign Policy, VICE, and The Los Angeles Review of Books.


“Castner writes in the tradition of Orwell and Kapuscinski.” – Joydeep Roy-Bhattacharya, author of The Watch

“Reading the book, I just kept thinking that you not only had one of the most nerve-wracking jobs imaginable…but it’s also the most gruesome job…. You need nerves of steel to do that kind of work.” – Terry Gross, on The Long Walk – July 9, 2012 Fresh Air interview





Bomb Squad Stories

One Degree of Separation in the Forever WarVICE Motherboard – 11/11/15
Having an Opera Made of Your LifeLitHub – 6/23/15
The Inside Story of the Boston Bomb Squad’s Defining Day – Wired – 10/25/13
Remember the Living – The Daily Beast – 5/26/13
The Cost of Our War, Name by Name – Wall Street Journal – 7/9/12

Ebola & Liberia Stories

The American Warlord Guilty of Torture – The Daily Beast – 4/7/15
On Reading Graham Greene in Liberia in a Time of EbolaLos Angeles Review of Books – 2/20/15
Hearts, Minds and Ebola: The US Army Drops in on LiberiaVICE News – 2/13/15
An Empty, Underused Medical Outpost Could Be the Future of the Ebola Fight Foreign Policy – 1/28/15
Progress in Liberia: Schools Shuttered by Ebola Set to Reopen – VICE News – 1/1815
“We are Fighting an Enemy, and the Enemy is Ebola” – Foreign Policy – 1/14/15
Giving Up the DeadVICE News – 1/14/15
Inside the US Army’s Ebola Lab in Liberia – VICE Motherboard – 1/13/15
Let This Ebola End: Liberians Prepare for 2015 with Parties and Prayer – VICE News – 1/5/15
– Pulitzer Center – Field Notes: West Point, Daily Talk, Helo Email, Music from Bethel Heart of Faith Church
– Pulitzer Center – Untold Stories: Teaching the Healthcare Workers of Liberia

Military & Veterans Issues

The Changing Face of Battlefield Medicine – VICE Motherboard – 9/15/15
“Ashley’s War” – A Look at the Use of Cultural Support Teams in Afghanistan – Foreign Policy – 4/21/15
REMFs Lead the Way! – Foreign Policy – 10/3/14
What the Islamic State Learned From the US About Fighting a War – The Washington Post – 8/26/14
Op-Ed – Torn Between Competing Perspectives on Iraq – The New York Times – 6/17/14
How a Thumb-Sized Gauge is Revolutionizing Traumatic Brain Injuries – The Daily Beast – 3/23/14
Who Should Kill? Looking for Answers in Erik Prince’s Memoir – The Daily Beast – 11/22/13
Building a Bridge From Combat to Civilian Life – The New York Times – 8/28/13
Op-Ed: Bridging the Gap Between Civilians and the Military – San Jose Mercury News – 4/28/13
In Defense of a Good Guy With a Gun – The Daily Beast – 4/27/13
War and Healing at Silicon Valley Art Gallery – The New York Times – 3/12/13
Moving Back East, Heading Back Home – Newsweek – 3/25/07

Book Reviews and Author Interviews

The Sexiest Memoir of the YearThe Daily Beast – 12/5/15
Storyteller as Plumber: An Interview with Kevin Kling – The Public – 11/4/15
Hipsters Go to WarThe Public 5/13/15
A Christmas Far From Home – Washington Independent Review of Books – 12/5/14
This Week’s Must Read: A Book on Iraq’s Nightmarish Reality – NPR All Thing’s Considered – 10/26/14
Afghanistan: A Stage Without a Play – Los Angeles Review of Books – 10/2/14
Fiction Honed in a Combat Zone: Michael Pitre’s “Fives & Twenty-Fives” – The Daily Beast 8/25/14
The Profanity of War: Phil Klay’s “Redeployment” – The Daily Beast – 3/1/14
Between Boredom and Terror: One Soldier’s Letters from Afghanistan – The Daily Beast – 2/6/14
Review of “Fire & Forget” – Foreign Policy – 10/8/12
Review of “The Yellow Birds” – Foreign Policy – 10/12/11
I Wish My Book Wasn’t a Memoir – Publisher’s Weekly – 7/6/12

Adventure and the Outdoors

After DeliveranceSaranac Review – 2014 (nominated for the Pushcart Prize)
BASE Jumpers Aren’t (All) Crazy – Outside Magazine – 7/30/14
Four Days on the Saranacs – Adirondack Explorer – 8/20/12


Down There, or Goodbye to my Long Regrets – ZOUCH Magazine – 9/11