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Fail-Safe | [Eugene Burdick, Harvey Wheeler]

Fail-Safe

Something has gone wrong. A group of American bombers armed with nuclear weapons is streaking past the fail-safe point, beyond recall, and no one knows why. Their destination - Moscow. In a bomb shelter beneath the White House, the calm young president turns to his Russian translator and says, "I think we are ready to talk to Premier Kruschchev." Not far away, in the War Room at the Pentagon, the secretary of defense and his aides watch with growing anxiety...
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Publisher's Summary

Something has gone wrong. A group of American bombers armed with nuclear weapons is streaking past the fail-safe point, beyond recall, and no one knows why. Their destination - Moscow.

In a bomb shelter beneath the White House, the calm young president turns to his Russian translator and says, "I think we are ready to talk to Premier Kruschchev." Not far away, in the War Room at the Pentagon, the secretary of defense and his aides watch with growing anxiety as the luminous blips crawl across a huge screen map. High over the Bering Strait in a large Vindicator bomber, a colonel stares in disbelief at the attack code number on his fail-safe box and wonders if it could possibly be a mistake.

First published in 1962, when America was still reeling from the Cuban Missile Crisis, Fail-Safe reflects the apocalyptic attitude that pervaded society during the height of the Cold War, when disaster could have struck at any moment. As more countries develop nuclear capabilities and the potential for new enemies lurks on the horizon, Fail-Safe and its powerful issues continue to be relevant.

©1962 Eugene Burdick and John Harvey Wheeler, Jr (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (15 )
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  •  
    Nancy 09-26-14
    Nancy 09-26-14
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    "Rave Reviews for an Exceptional Narrator"
    What about Kevin Kraft’s performance did you like?

    Kevin truly made the story come alive for me. As someone who has a long commute daily and was apprehensive about listening to a book rather than reading the pages of a book, Kevin's narration of the story made it easy for me to transition. His voice is clear, crisp and you can hear the passion, drama and story in how he becomes each character to relay the chapters of the story to you via his voice. I got sucked into the story purely because of Kevin and looked forward to him joining me on my drive every day. I looked forward to him sharing the next bits of the story and realized that even though this would not be a natural selection for me as a book lover, he piqued my interest. I would love to hear more books narrated by Kevin to see what other stories he can pull me into and let my imagination run. Well done Kevin!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jenny Utica, MI, United States 01-12-14
    Jenny Utica, MI, United States 01-12-14
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    "Fail Safe Audio Book Good For The Drive!"
    Would you try another book from Eugene Burdick and Harvey Wheeler and/or Kevin Kraft?

    Kevin Kraft took what was an extremely dry topic and infused enthusiasm into the audio presentation.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    I was surprised at what the president of the United States did after the unintentional act perpetrated upon Russia.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The ending was my favorite part - really unexpected.


    Could you see Fail-Safe being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    No - I think the subject matter may be too dated to be appealing to a contemporary audience.


    Any additional comments?

    The narrator did a very good job presenting the different characters. I would definitely listen to another book narrated by Mr. Kraft.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin and Kali Starr Knoxville, TN. 12-26-13
    Kevin and Kali Starr Knoxville, TN. 12-26-13

    Kali Starr

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    "Fail-Safe knocked me for a loop!"
    If you could sum up Fail-Safe in three words, what would they be?

    Could really happen


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The president.
    I felt a real connection to the character. The way he gathered opinions and used the people he has chosen to make decisions, the readers (or listeners) are privy to knowledge he doesn’t have and yet his actions are bold and startling. I felt at ease with his manners and voice, it exuded confidence and determination.


    Have you listened to any of Kevin Kraft’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes. In this instance his reading was more of a performance, not over the top mind you but a steady storytelling and his use of different character voices was great. I listen while driving and I need something interesting to help me stay sharp on the road. It was very enjoyable.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I did laugh out loud when protesters "They burned the book, then apologized to a non-listening public"
    But at the end I really wanted MORE, what happens next.


    Any additional comments?

    This was the first audio book I listened to that I had not read or seen the movie first, it took me a while to get into the characters with all the set-up required, it was worth it and it may be just the way I am :o)

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clare B. Gerber Penfield, NY 12-03-13
    Clare B. Gerber Penfield, NY 12-03-13 Member Since 2014

    cbg

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    "Cliffhanger ending!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Fail-Safe to be better than the print version?

    For me YES. The narrator was terrific and brought the story to 'real' life.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I liked all as they played an important part.


    What about Kevin Kraft’s performance did you like?

    Kevin Kraft has a rich barratone voice with a hint of an accent. One that I loved to listen to.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    Very thought provoking. A very good read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Douglas 07-17-14

    I listen while I drive, jog, do dishes and exercise. Now I can catch up on my books and get everything else done too!

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    "Can technology still destroy us? A great book."
    Would you listen to Fail-Safe again? Why?

    Yes, because it's so rich in thought about the implications of science, war, technology and ethics. Listening to it more than once would uncover more nuances.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved the build up at the end and the incredible surprise ending.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The tense discussions between the President and his translator and Khrushchev and his translator. It was amazing (and scary!) to see how much could get "lost in translation".


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Learning of the president's decision, and how much he cared about everyone in the world.


    Any additional comments?

    I have vivid memories of watching this classic black and white movie with my father on the TV set. It was riveting then, and was equally riveting to listen to. The narrator gave a finely paced performance, and he must have chosen to make the president JFK, because his Massachusetts accent was very good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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