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This is not just the best book I have read all year (and last year for that matter) it's a book you really should hear rather than read, if you can. The narrators are the people who lived this adventure: Anne Garrels, NPR correspondent tells the story of what it was like to be one of only a dozen journalists who remained in Bagdad during the war while her husband Vint Lawrence reads his own wonderfully written email updates about Anne that he sent to friends and family. Part of the book is about Anne Garrels' individual journey through tangles of corrupt bureaucracy and bombs and the people of Baghdad who often risked their safety to help her. It's a window onto the city and the people of Baghdad, very intimate and personal, well apart from network news coverage. Part of the book is the story of a married couple and how they championed each other under difficult and often frightening conditions. It's a book about courage, chaos, bribery, frustration, love, friendship, dirty water, duct tape and dust and I think that makes it a classic. Give it a listen.
108 of 111 people found this review helpful
I found Anne's reporting very good and extremely accurate. It reflects the views of the Iraqi's I encountered while working at the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA). I wish she had pounded CNN a little harder over thier dramatazation of events before they knew any facts but she remainded focused on her story.
I believe a little more historical background could have been given at the beginning to help understand how Sadaam could come to power and how the Iraq situation adds to the unrest in the Middle East.
The Brenda Bulletins were endearing at first but nerve racking in the end. They were presented at too slow a pace and were often repetitive of what Anne had already said. Anne was a brave correspondent in a very dangerous area. I got that without having to be told that every ten minutes.
I can say the views that Anne presents from the Iraqi's is 100% in line with what I experienced. Although I only give this three stars for the presentation. I give it five stars for a must read.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful