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Publisher's Summary

Throughout the Gulf War of 1991, unprecedented restrictions on the media’s access to the battlefield kept the true story of that brief, brutal conflict from being told. Now, after two years of intensive research, Rick Atkinson has written what will surely come to be recognized as the definitive chronicle of the war.

Crusade follows the unfolding battle from the first night to the final day, providing vivid accounts of bombing runs and White House strategy sessions, fire-fights and bitter inter-service conflicts. Weaving individual stories into the larger narrative, Atkinson represents the allied campaign against Saddam Hussein as a wholly new kind of war, one that has transformed the nature of modern warfare.

©1993 Rick Atkinson (P)1996 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"An engrossing account. Rich in pertinent details, the powerful narrative leaps nimbly from Washington to Riyadh." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Story

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A very decent account of the gulf war

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Yes. Gives a pretty detailed account of the sequence of events. I am actually a gulf war vet according to Congress' definition (no direct combat for me though), but I learned a lot of things I hadn't known about it from this book.

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

One sub-plot has sort of already been done with "Jarhead", but there are a lot of other things that could probably be turned into a movie. And it would probably be a pretty decent film if they did the whole thing.

Any additional comments?

One annoying thing is the author's unconcealed political grandstanding at various points. The book would have been a lot better if he could have restrained himself on that point.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

I found the narrator to be good

What about Jeff Riggenbach’s performance did you like?

I think the narrator is just fine. Ok, the occasional long pause makes me wonder if I'm about to get a phone call, but I'm not going to deducts points for that. To my ear, his pronunciations are correct.

I'm mainly writing this because I nearly skipped over this audible book because of the negative comments. I am glad I didn't.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Hal VT
  • Bennington, VT USA
  • 04-13-13

Great account of Desert Shield/Storm

Would you consider the audio edition of Crusade to be better than the print version?

No. In fact, I got most of the way through this, then ordered it in hardcover.

What did you like best about this story?

Atkinson has a knack for finding a perfect middle-ground between The War as an event run by entire coalitions of governments and massive military units on the one side, and the troops in the proverbial trenches on the other side. It is therefore more readable than a history of politics and policy or of divisional maneuvers and terrain, while being broader in scope than, say, Jarhead. Stylistically, his writing brings things to life while giving the "big picture" history.

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

This was my first. As other reviewers have doubtlessly pointed out, he mispronounces household names like Dick Cheney and Colin Powell. He also pronounces Arabic place names oddly; though "Sa-OO-di" may well be technically correct, it's not how anyone pronounced it when I was there twice with Operation Southern Watch. Aggravating.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Narrator needs a pronunciation guide

Would you consider the audio edition of Crusade to be better than the print version?

Unfortunately no. The narrator's inability to pronounce simple words correctly consistently detracted from the grand scale of the story. While some of these words were understandable (i.e. military jargon and Arabic words/names), others were just silly pronunciations of common English words. If someone familiar with the content "proof-listened" his recording, it certainly didn't show.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Content Terrible Narrator

The content of the book is excellent. It covers in detail the events of the war with the same piercing insight and level of research one finds in other great works about war such as The Guns of August. A distinguishing feature shows in the moments where small jokes and levities of the individual soldier and squad are sprinkled in to highlight the human experience of the war.

The narrator for this audio book, however, is by far the worst I’ve ever heard in an audio book. LibriVox’s volunteers are more consistent. He is unable to pronounce dozens of relevant words, mangling well know names so badly they are not recognizable, butchering place names, and at times even stumbling over basic vocabulary to render comprehension difficult.

Go compund his staggering failures of pronunciation (which you will encounter every few minutes for the duration), he also stutters through the book like Captain Kirk with his brain set to stun. He often says the first syllable of a sentence, pauses for several seconds, and then restarts. These pauses are perfectly timed to make you think the recording is paused by accident or you are receiving a call (if listening on a phone.) They often happen in the middle of key events, destroying the author’s pacing.

It’s a great book on the First Gulf War. But know you will likely return it after you finish because I couldn’t imagine listening to it twice.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

we lived through it, saw the news accounts...

and now this book fills in the gaps. Answers questions, dispells myths , sometimes unpleasantly, but all in all a good account of a moment in US history.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Detailed military history

Like everything Atkinson writes, well researched, thorough, and detailed. I’ve listened to most of his work. This is just as good as his other stuff. Riggenbach did a good just with the narration but the a long pauses peppered throughout. I assume they indicate new paragraphs. They are a little off putting but not ruinously so.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Not bad

Somewhat left leaning account of events. Narration voice and cadence is good but plagued by distracting mispronunciations

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Good book / Distracting narration

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Overall, I thought this was a good account of the Gulf War. It appeared well researched and well written. I have listened to quite a number of audiobooks covering WW1, WW2, Korea, and Vietnam and thought the author's approach to telling his story was easy to follow and kept me interested. I recommend the audiobook despite the narrator's rather perplexing mispronunciation of names and various words that marred what was otherwise a decent narration.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The narrator's mispronunciation of well known names can distract the listener from an otherwise good audiobook. I went so far as researching the offending pronunciations to determine if my expected pronunciation was wrong, but no, it was the narrator. I can't fathom how it was not addressed during editing. It is a shame as the narration was otherwise decent.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good story not much opinion

The book gives plenty of stories about the war but does nothing for opinion.