For those interested in cold war history and military issues, this book is very interesting, and shocking. Since listening, I have researched some of what is discussed in this book, and it has all checked out. It is hard to believe that the story this book tells isn't more widely known. The narraration is good, and the research is very detailed. I highly recommend this book to those inclined to detailed history.
The detailed description of the development of technology that went into signals analysis in order to track the Russian Subs, as well as the details of several specific missions and situations.
Three memorable moments come to mind (and they are all extensive parts of the book): the development of Project Boresight; the implementation of Project Boresight during the Cuban Missle Crisis; the wire tapping operations in the Sea of Okhotsk.
The narrarator did fine. When a single narrorator attempts to change his voice to sound like multiple characters, it gets a bit comical. But the narration was well read, easy to listen to, and very clear.
There were a few points that were frustrating because the author's research seemed a bit off on some points. Particularly with regard to the Russian submarine K-129. I strongly recommend Red Star Rouge for a detailed history of that submarine and the US recover of the submarine. Other history books (some of them autobiography's by individuals actually involved in different aspects) have confirmed that some of Red November's information on the K-129 was not entirely accurate (e.g., in From The Shadows, Robert Gates himself writes that he presented the Russians with the bell from the conning tower of the K-129. Gates could not have done that unless the US had gotten more of the sub than Red November indicates the US recovered.)
For true fans of the sport, Fatsis got to live a dream that many of us would love to live.
As I listened, throuroghly enjoying Kagan's insights, thoughts and at times, wit, I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop -- the political statement that would show a bias or would ruin an otherwise very good analysis of current trans-atlantic politics. It never came. It is a fully enjoyable evaluation of the past and potential future. I highly recommend it.
I can't stop telling people about this story! I first heard about this several years ago, and am sorry it took me so long to finally get this book. Like some of the other reviewers, I sat in my car listening even when I got to where I was going. A true testament to the human spirit and tenacity. Fantastic writing with great phrases and imagery. I started this book at the begining of a long drive and this was perfect to make the long drive seem very short.
Obviously, the author has the credentials to speak on this issue, and he conveys his perspective very well. The first 3/4 of the book are very well written and provide a very good insight into terrorism. However, the last 1/4 of the book becomes very biased, as could be expected.
Without the written materials, this book loses a lot of its value. As an audio book, this is extremely repetative. The "memory tools" that it teaches you could be taught in 3 days tops, rather than 10. I found very little information that was truly helpful as a memory technique.
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