Cover UFO Photo © Bill Heinsohn/Tony Stone Images; Copyright ©1999 by Richard Belzer; Copyright (P)1999 NewStar Media Inc.
This is a fun listen. I really liked it. Richard Belzer is dry, and has a very subtle sense of humor, but it works. He presents some very interesting points in an amusing way. Conspiracy buffs will love it, and fans of sarcastic humor will appreciate the way he spears the JFK issues and UFO research. I recommend it.
Belz hit a home run with this book. Do you think Oswald was a patsy? That the moon landing was filmed on a sound stage in Hollywood? That the men in black have paid you a visit? This is the book for you. As a fan of Richard Belzer's standup work, and later his character on SVU, I was tickled to see this book in the audible "stacks". It doesn't disappoint.
Belzer's delightfully acerbic, and surprisingly compelling, paranoia shines here. Whether talking about the Kennedy assasination (which he devotes more than half of the book to) or the cover-up of alien encounters, Belz injects each argument with enough common sense, humor and (partially) plausible evidence to make the book both engaging and thought-provoking.
I listened to this poolside during a recent vacation and it made an excellent diversion. If you're looking for Anna Karenina, this won't be the book for you. On the other hand, if you enjoyed the x-files, have an open mind, and think Oliver Stone may have been on to something, pick this one up.
I have just bought the audible book and only listened to maybe 15 minutes of it. Im sure the book is great but im finding it very hard to listen to with the sound effects and the tinny sound of his voice. It sounds like the reader is in the bathroom or somewhere and is in a hurry to read it.
It was RUINED by tragic recording session, and Belzer is not a narrator (But an exceptional actor!). Was this recorded at his kitchen table? Richard, did you record this on a pocket cassette recorder? Tragic, so I picked up the actual book. VERY good. GO GET THE ACTUAL BOOK!
Fixed the recording. Just nightmarish. Other than that, the work is exceptional.
Roy Dotrice, perhaps.
You couldn't make a movie of this book. At least, not ONE movie.
Again, this book has been ruined by the author's narration, and the pathetic recording session. Go get the book. You'll like the book.
The author sounded like he was reading through the phone during the whole book. There were multiple cheesy sound clips throughout the book as well that I thought was very annoying. The JFK chapters were interesting, but no new news or theories there. The UFO chapters were far fetched in my opinion. Overall I gave it a 3/5. I'm sure there are better books out there on these subjects.
Maybe. It was entertaining. And gives another perspective to history from a comedic viewpoint.
Although I don't recall Elvis being mentioned, the aliens and JFK part were interesting enough - though he has held onto some urban legends that have been disproved time and again. It's almost as if this book was meant for pro-conspiracy people who will believe anything that seems to prove their position.
He's a professional actor, so his delivery was professional. I don't mind the profanity. It adds spice to the book.
If I had the time, yes. Although historically inaccurate in some places, it's entertaining to hear the pro-conspiracy side in a sarcastic and comedic delivery.
He gets a lot of things wrong. I would suggest anybody who listened to this to also listen to 'Reclaiming History', Just so you know where this book departs from history and goes into wild conspiracy theories. There has to be some balance here!
Sounds as if the author was reading a collection of superficial and dated articles from newspapers, tabloids and periodicals - and read so perfunctorily! I could not listen to this book as recorded but rather skipped ahead from chapter to chapter hoping the content would improve – it did not. This recording seems like a naked grab at trading on this actor's then fame, to establish himself as an author (fail)… perhaps it worked for some but not for me. What a total waste of time and an Audible credit.
I will break this review into 2 sections. Content and Audio.
It is read by Belzer and at times sounds as though an eighth grader is reading it in front of the class. Other times it seems as though Belzer is riffing and if you are getting content that was not in the book. There are annoying sound drops accompanying his "factoids" and other areas. It's like the "I'm in hell show" and Bob and Tom are the hosts! Only without the humor... hence the hell part!
He pulls most(over 90%) from books by conspiracy king Jim Maars. So much so that in fact the book should be retitled as being the cliff notes of Jim Maars' works. Thus, it is a sideshow of Belzer trying to push something off as fact and ignoring recent evidence to the contrary. In fact he touts the infamously debunked "Norman Similas" photo as being a given fact. As if he had actually seen the image. Which of course he hasn't because it doesn't exist. This is allegedly a photo taken from across the street that supposedly shows 2 figures standing at the window and a rifle barrel sticking out.
Other leaps of logic, tenuous threads, debunked nonsense, and blind faith in Jim Maars' research(if you can call it that) without the slightest rechecking of the data permeate this work. The snarky quips and humor that was only funny circa 1982 also rule the day.
In short, go watch Oliver Stone's JFK. It is more entertaining, just as factual, and no annoying Belzer jokes.
Whatever your feelings on conspiracy theories, this is a fun book. Belzer is typically dry in his reading, and while I take all his facts with a grain of salt, he makes some interesting arguments.
Unfortunately, every few minutes, there are these weird, loud, annoying tin-can-as-a-rim-shot type sound effects, and they get really irritating really fast. I have no idea what the producers were thinking.
I've been a fan of Belz since as long as I can remember. This was one of my first Audible buys. It takes some getting into, but the narration is typical of the Belz. I can truely recommend this title to anyone who likes DRY humor.
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