I read Steve Fainaru's book Big Boy Rules in a day and a half. It's relatively short, easy and quick to read, with a casual but evocative manner that quickly draws you into the narrative and keeps you there through the whole book.
Big Boy Rules is about mercenary companies in Iraq, the "Private Security Contractors" that perform all the convoy escort and protection details that the military doesn't want to or can't spare the manpower to provide. I am not going to dive into the political quagmire of whether or not mercenary forces should or should not be used over in Iraq; the fact of the matter is that mercenary troops have been a part of military life for thousands of years, and I suspect they will always play a role in such conflicts.
What does disturb me is that these mercenary companies have little to no objective oversight into who they are hiring, what their qualifications are (or whether or not they should be disqualified from employment) and how they are behaving once they are in-country. Throughout the course of this book, Fainaru looks at several security companies, focusing mainly on Crescent Security (which seems to be something of a bush-league outfit with questionable hires and management and poor equipment), but also discussing larger organizations such as ArmorGroup (whose review seems mostly positive) to Blackwater (who appear to be running rampant across all of Iraq).
I picked this book up to get a little more information on what the modern mercenary scene looked like, especially in Iraq. What it looks like, after reading Big Boy Rules, is that:
A) It all depends on the outfit who hires you.
B) It all depends on the missions you run and the area you operate within.
C) It all depends on your level of experience and whether or not you know when it's time to "bug out", or if you stay in too long and get a little cracked in the head.
From a "Post-Modern Pulp" angle, one could easily envision a series of adventure novels centered around a "crack security unit" operating out of Iraq, providing high-risk protective details and other paramilitary services that the military isn't or won't be able to handle. You could also take it a couple of other directions; perhaps your main character is a "one man security company" who sells his services to the highest bidder, operating on his own but encountering a whole host of characters throughout the theater of Iraq. Another possibility would be a rough-and-tumble merc outfit, a "bad news bears" styled group of highly skilled but irascible misfits who take the dirty, dangerous jobs that other, slicker companies won't touch.
Also, it should be noted that Big Boy Rules, without giving away any "spoilers", covers a pretty grim event in the history of mercenary outfits in Iraq. The events surrounding the activities of Crescent Security in the 2006-2007 time period go to show that many of these companies can suffer severe tragedies while in the line of fire and on the job, and they do fall into a weird gray area - they are supporting the war, working in conjunction with the governments of the US and Iraq to promote the rebuilding efforts, but at the same time, they are not afforded the same support and aid the military gives troops in the field.
All in all, I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for more information on private security contractors and mercenaries operating in Iraq, especially from the perspective of the "B-Teams". After all, not every company out there is Blackwater in terms of their gear and their reputation (for good and bad).