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Jeff

Clarendon Hills, IL, United States

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  • Area 51: An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Annie Jacobsen
    • Narrated By Annie Jacobsen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1414)
    Performance
    (984)
    Story
    (992)

    Myths and hypotheses about Area 51 have long abounded, thanks to the intense secrecy enveloping it. Some claim it is home to aliens, underground tunnel systems, and nuclear facilities. Others believe that the lunar landing was filmed there. The prevalence of these rumors stems from the fact that no credible insider has ever divulged the truth about his time inside the base. Until now.

    A User says: "Reality, always more interesting than fiction."
    "Intriguing for the history"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Jacobsen does a fine job of telling the story of Area 51, especially the spy plane missions that originated from there flying U-2 and A-12 aircraft. I've been a more-than-casual student of post WWII aircraft development over the years and I found much in this book I had not found elsewhere. If one is a aircraft history buff, this book will be very interesting.

    The information about the CIA and how it utilized the base was also interesting but I have more doubts as to the accuracy of the author's statements and conclusions. By the nature of national intelligence there will be gaps in the narrative. I find Jacobsen's speculations in filling in some of those gaps sometimes a bit far-fetched.

    The decision to have the author read her own book was, I believe, a mistake. She has a somewhat "sexy," breathy voice which is interesting for a short time, but after a few hours it becomes irritating. I think the book would have been better served read by a reader with far more experience in professional reading. It's not as demanding a book to read as a novel, where the narrator must keep characters straight for the listener by voice quality, but there is something to be said for the experience a professional reader has.

    I bought it for the content, not for the reading. If I had it to do over again I think I would have purchased it in print. It has some interesting information but the reading just doesn't make it for me. Be sure to listen to the sample - if you feel you can listen to her voice for a long time, I encourage you to give it a try. The content of the book is worth it.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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