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Publisher's Summary

Red November is filled with hair-raising, behind-the-scenes stories that take you deep beneath the surface and into the action of the Cold War.

Few know how close the world has come to annihilation better than the warriors who served America during the tense, 45-year struggle known as the Cold War. Yet for decades, their work has remained shrouded in secrecy. Now, in this riveting new history, W. Craig Reed, a former navy diver and fast-attack submariner, provides an eye-opening, pulse-pounding narrative of the underwater struggles and espionage operations between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. that brought us to the brink of nuclear war more than once.

Red November is filled with hair-raising, behind-the-scenes stories that take you deep beneath the surface and into the action during the entire Cold War period from 1946 through 1992. Reed served aboard submarines involved in espionage operations, and his father was a top military intelligence specialist intimately involved in the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Reed is one of the first authors to obtain so many in-depth interviews with dozens of navy divers, espionage operatives, submariners, and government officials on both sides (including several Soviet submarine captains) about the most daring and decorated missions of the conflict, including top-secret Ivy Bells, Boresight, Bulls Eye, and Holystone operations.

Transcending traditional submarine, espionage, and Cold War accounts, Red November is an up-close examination of one of the most dangerous times in world history and an intimate look at the men and women who participated in our country’s longest and most expensive underwater war.

©2010 W. Craig Reed (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“If Tom Clancy had turned The Hunt for Red October into a nonfiction thriller, W. Craig Reed’s Red November might be the result. Here is the full-throttle and riveting story of espionage, secret missions, and the never-before-told tales of submariners on the front lines of a clandestine war. Not to be missed!” (James Rollins)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    177
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    168
  • 3 Stars
    78
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    23
  • 1 Stars
    8

Performance

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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    130
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    141
  • 3 Stars
    51
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    16
  • 1 Stars
    3

Story

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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    136
  • 4 Stars
    129
  • 3 Stars
    50
  • 2 Stars
    22
  • 1 Stars
    4
Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Good tech read

I enjoyed the book but potential readers should know it is very technical. I enjoyed this aspect but some might not care for it.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Former a Former CSDG-1 submariner

As a former CSDG-1 member having served on many of the boat in the book and some others for a total of 6 boats and 2 sub-tenders. I made some spec-op including the Big One. Story done pretty well.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A "Historical Fiction"

There were several moments where I found myself listening to this book thinking.. "That can't be right". After hearing about K-129 hitting the bottom at 200 knots I started doing some armchair research and very little of this book stands up to even basic scrutiny. It's an interesting story but belongs somewhere between "The Hunt for Red October" (fact based fiction) and "The DaVinci Code" (somewhat historically inspired fiction).

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Labored Detail

What disappointed you about Red November?

This book in my opinion gives way too much technical detail on tracking submarines prior to the satellite era.

I am a technically oriented person who thrives on nauticle engineering concepts and I found my mind wandering while listening due to the level if detail which I believe would bore most readers.

Even though I did not like the content, the presentation was very good.

Has Red November turned you off from other books in this genre?

No

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

Yes, very good

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

If you want techical detail of tracking submarines especially during the early 60's and the Cuban Missle Crisis, then this book is for you

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Included things I didn't previously know about

What made the experience of listening to Red November the most enjoyable?

Wove the technology and events (both in the subs and political) together to make a good story.

What did you like best about this story?

Information on the use of technology that I was not aware of previously.

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

N/A

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

No

  • Overall

Read it!

This was one of the most informative books I have read in awhile. Great book.

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Red November a disappointment

I had hoped for an exciting and thought provoking account of the cold war beneath the waves. Instead I received a dose of rather lame conspiracy theories, uneven story telling and little in the way of new information on this important period of time. IMHO poorly written and unsatisfying.

5 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Was he really ever on a submarine?

As a retired submarine sonar technician there were several things in this book that made me wonder whether Reed was ever on a submarine. He makes a few mistakes about how submarines operate that no one who had earned their dolphins would ever make, even if they had been off the boats for many years. The book "Blind Man's Bluff" tells the story of submarine intelligence operations much better, although it does not have the specific details that Reed shares here.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Where was the editor??

I purchased this book to learn more about the topic of submarines and their part in the Cold War. To that extent the book stays on topic but I am left with serious questions as to it's accuracy. There are so many errors in minor areas, i.e. while riding to meet with President Kennedy the author refers to "a dark, lowering sky in Washington, DC", but while meeting with the President he refers to rays of sunshine streaming into the White House windows?!!

The above minor error is indicative of at least a couple of dozen other similar errors though out the story. The problem with them is that it makes the technical and historical accuracy of the book questionable. I have absolutely no knowledge of submarines, their operation, or of the technology used to track them. I'm also in the dark with reference to the historical events involving submarines in the Cuban Missile crisis. My main reason for listening to this book was to gain ACCURATE knowledge in those areas, at the end I'm left with as many questions as answers.

The reviews of this book published in Amazon.com's website delve into technical difficulties in great detail. If you are listening to this book as a learning experience I urge you to read through those reviews.

All said, the book is interesting, held my attention, and stimulated further interest. So it certainly isn't all bad. Tom Weiner does a good job reading the book, especially since the writing style doesn't necessarily flow easily.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • BikeMeister
  • Woodbridge, Virginia United States
  • 09-27-12

Incredible Number of Inaccuracies-- Some Interesti

Would you try another book from W. Craig Reed and/or Tom Weiner?

no

What was most disappointing about W. Craig Reed’s story?

Huge number of inaccuracies-- some are stunning.

How could the performance have been better?

Needed some quality control-- totally fumbled pronunciation of Navy nomenclature.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Red November?

I would have reviewed the entire book, page by page for factual accuracy, and if I myself was not prior Navy, I would have brought in a knowledgeable consultant.

Any additional comments?

Many people have already written about the errors-- in my reading, one error per page is probably about right. Many of these errors are stunning. Most could have been avoided by some careful research or peer review before publication. I have the Kindle version as well as the Audible version, and there was obviously no quality control in the audio recording as well. A narrator is not born with the knowledge that military systems are referred to as "Mark 14" or "Mark 11" instead of sounding out the MK of the nomenclature as "emkay". Obviously no intelligent editing of the narration.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful