Martin Fletcher, now NBC News bureau chief in Tel Aviv, tracks his 35-year career as a foreign correspondent in the world's hottest areas of conflict. Narrator Stephen Hoye's vocal characterization of the author is elegant without being lofty. No matter how gruesome the reporting, Hoye sounds professional and in control, yet one is aware of strong emotions below the surface. Author Fletcher captures a world most of us would never want to inhabit. Among the experiences he recounts are the filming of a father as his baby dies in his arms and a woman, all skin and bones, dying an agonizing death. He also offers reflections on his own family's destruction in the Holocaust. A superb and mesmerizing production.
With humor and elegance, Fletcher describes his growth from clueless adventurer to grizzled veteran of the world's battlefields. His working philosophy of "Get in, get close, get out, get a drink," put him repeatedly in harm's way, but he never lost sight of why he did it. In a world obsessed with celebrities, leaders, and wealth, Fletcher took a different route: he focused on those left behind, those paying the price. He answers the question: Why should we care?
These extraordinary, real-life adventure stories each examine different dilemmas facing a foreign correspondent. Can you eat the food of a warlord who stole it from the starving? Do you listen politely to a terrorist threatening to blow up your children? Do you ask the tough questions of a Khmer Rouge killer, knowing he is your only ticket out of the Cambodian jungle? And, above all, how do you stay sane when you're faced with so much pain?
©2008 Martin Fletcher; (P)2008 Tantor
"An eye-opening, deeply felt memoir that brings us behind the cameras in the world's deadliest hot spots." (Kirkus)
"A historical overview, an example of a successful journalist's career, and a journalistic tour de force." (Library Journal)
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