I've tried and tried to get through this book, but I haven't finished it yet. Maybe if I would have bought the book instead of the audio file...at this point, I'm tempted to rent the movie just so I know how it ends.
It amazes me that one man with a vision can change the course of history. It is too bad that the unintended consequences were so severe. My hat is still off to Charlie Wilson.
Very dry, completely lost interest at several point in the second file of the book, didn't finish it. Way too much detail in areas that I didn't think were pertinent to the point of the story. I would only recommend this if you don't know ANYTHING about the Afghan-Soviet story at all.
I like Charlie Wilson. I like the writing. I like the author. I like the movie. If it didn't happen recently then you'd think it was fiction. Worth it.
I learned a great deal but it was far from an exciting read. It reads in a "just the facts" manner. One would think that a book on spies would have more intrigue.
This is how we felt. I purchased this right before a long tedious road trip. Both my husband and I listened for hours. It was engaging, entertaining and educational. Just to know that this was all going on when no one bothered to report on it or blab all over the media. This is where the real story is - after the fact when the job is done. I have always said it is better to ask forgiveness than to ask permission - Charlie Wilson is one of these guys with the same rule!
I don't know. Maybe these things won't bother other people, but it seemed as if there were a lot of either typos in the text or misreadings by the reader. Describing the "hollowed halls" of Yale, talking about "flaunting the rules," telling of an antique car so old it had more than "three thousand miles on it." And so on and on and on. These things just jolted me every time I heard them. The ms should have been proof-read, or the reader needs to be more careful. I've "read" probably a thousand books on tape, cd, and as downloads, and I've never encountered anything like this. Great story, tho.
What Charlie Wilson, the CIA and various others did was pretty extraordinary, but the telling is anything but. Mr. Crile’s choice to delve into the background of every character as a way of explaining the motivation for playing a part in the Afghan resistance is distracting. I also found it confusing the way Mr. Crile, attempting to tell the story chronologically, also bounces back and forth in time, again attempting to unveil all the significance of each event, choice, meeting, etc. Rather than rewind constantly to figure out where I was in time and where the timeline had diverged, I decided to let go of the details and try to keep track of the bigger picture. Mr. Crile fails in one other important point - at the end of the second section (of three) I found it difficult to find a compelling reason to keep listening. We already know the ending, but unlike Mr. Eichenwald’s excellent "Conspiracy of Fools," there is no suspense or intrigue here. There are colorful characters who overcome many obstacles; there are colorful stories with humorous or interesting outcomes; but those ingredients don’t complete the recipe of a good story.