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Out of the Darkness and into the Blue

Surprising Secrets, Tactics, and Training Concepts, A Memoir from One of Kalamazoo's Top Cops
Narrated by: Jeff Hoyt
Length: 7 hrs and 20 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (103 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

For 25 years, peace officer Robert T. Christensen patrolled the streets of Kalamazoo, keenly aware every decision he made could have serious, even fatal, consequences. He learned this lesson early in his career, when a belligerent suspect beat the young rookie unconscious.

Throughout his career, Christensen made a habit of reviewing his actions. What tactics had he used? What immediate circumstances prompted his decisions? Could a slight change in strategy have improved the outcome? Viewing every situation as a learning experience molded Christensen into one of Kalamazoo's top cops.

Out of the Darkness and into the Blue recounts the most significant encounters in Christensen's career, but is more than the exciting memoirs of a veteran police officer. Christensen follows each chapter with a thorough analysis, discussing tactics, and training concepts relevant to his experiences.

Along the way, Christensen tackles many of the most important topics in law enforcement today, from racial profiling and deadly force to the challenges LGBT individuals face in a predominantly heterosexual field.

A fascinating exploration of one police officer's thought processes, Out of the Darkness and into the Blue is an entertaining listen and valuable resource for anyone learning about - or serving in - the criminal justice system.

©2014 Robert T. Christensen (P)2014 Robert T. Christensen

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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couldn't stop listening

Extremely insightful look into the work of police officers. Not only is this book very educational to police officers but also it provides a great understanding to citizens of the daily pressures of police work and the situations they face.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Intriguing Read

Would you listen to Out of the Darkness and into the Blue again? Why?

I will be listening to this book again in the future. The first-hand accounts of what the writer encountered throughout his career in law enforcement and military is nothing short of intriguing and interesting. A very well-written memoir.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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great stories from a great cop

tells great stories but takes the time to give tactical advice as well, a must read

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Better than expected

I wasn't sure if I would like this book but to my surprise it was really awesome. Definitely recommended for LEOs

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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great book

I love the book and the narrator was exceptional. I live in Michigan for 17 years so it had a familiar feel as he was specific about the places he worked.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Good book

Enjoyed listening would recommend interesting stories and interesting department fire/police wondering if they still do fire calls

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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awesome book

I encourage all people who are looking into law enforcement and all people who are new officers to read this book. There are some great insights on the value of community policing and a few officer safety tips. The book is a great Balance of an entertaining story mixed with a training manual. If you only pick up one thing in this book it could make a big difference in how you do your job. THIS IS A MUST READ.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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“Just the facts ma’am”

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

Yes. I found it a compelling read.

What did you like best about this story?

I liked that one can see the humanity of the writer despite the effect of professional detachment.

Which character – as performed by Jeff Hoyt – was your favorite?

Dumb question, it is a memoir. There is only one character. Although the narrator did a brilliant job.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

“Just the facts ma’am”

Any additional comments?

In his memoir of his career as a Public Safety Officer and Military Man, Mr. Christensen adopts the tone of the old TV series Dragnet and its star character Jack Webb. The author studiously keeps his emotional life well battened down and presents the material in a, “Just the facts ma’am” approach of that famous series. The result is a non-sentimental look at his career broken by the staccato of radio police chatter when describing events. This is not a touchy feely tell all book. The author remains as emotionally armored up as he describes his life and events as he says he did in the locker room getting ready to go on duty to deal with everything from the mundane offences to handling the human detritus of bad choices and horrific crimes. However, with all of the assumed indifference of professional detachment something human does come through of the man underneath the badge.

We as citizens demand a lot of our law enforcement people. I use the term people as opposed to officer as we often forget there are people underneath the badges and color of authority. We may not like that we are getting a ticket as opposed to a warning as our self-important lives are interrupted by our own inattention to the speed limit of other infraction, however, there is usually no malice in the enforcement duty being performed.
The same officer that has just annoyed you by a citation may well be the one that is breathing life into you as you lie by your car unconscious from an accident.
What I found most valuable was being able to see into the mind of an officer as he makes mistakes and quickly attains the professional poise we expect of public law enforcers. Mr. Christiansen reviles the strategy and thinking behind policing actions. Knowing what to expect is comforting to know as a citizen.

Despite his best efforts at professional detachment there are strong clues as to what type of man he was as an officer. The adjectives that spring to mind are principled, fair, compassionate, confident, yet he remains vulnerable when crap hits the fan such as the senseless death on duty of friends and colleges or citizens that were simply at the wrong place killed by a stray bullet. There are times the author confesses to feeling dead inside until time and opportunity presents him with a chance to save a life and restore his hope and joy in living. The man simply thrives for the opportunity to make a difference that counts. One tends to sense deep wells of emotion that is all buttoned up under his armor of professional detachment.

I look forward to seeing what else he might add to the literary world when his focus is not directed at himself. Perhaps he can share some of that intense feeling that lies just under the surface.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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He was awesome

The majority of the story can barely be heard over the backing of his own arm patting himself on the back. There was some insight on the duties of a patrolman, However this sounded very much like a narcissistic person reminding everybody how great he is. I appreciate the service you provided for his community,however there are also some questions as to whether or not he was a law-enforcement officer as you stated at times instead of a policeman.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Alright<br />

In a lot of points I felt as though there was a lack of continuity. The author's work did not match the narrator's rendition. Overall it was a good book but poor Audible.