Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Area 51 An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base by Annie Jacobsen

Area 51 is the nation’s most secretive, domestic military facility. It is located in the high desert of Southern Nevada, seventy-five miles north of Las Vegas. Its facilities have been constructed over the past sixty years around a flat, dry lakebed called Groom Lake.

The U.S. government has never admitted it exists.

This book is a work of non-fiction.

The stories I tell in this narrative are real.

--Annie Jacobsen, Author

Product Description
Area 51

It is the most famous military installation in the world. And it doesn't exist. Located a mere seventy-five miles outside of Las Vegas in Nevada's desert, the base has never been acknowledged by the U.S. government-but Area 51 has captivated imaginations for decades.

Myths and hypotheses about Area 51 have long abounded, thanks to the intense secrecy enveloping it. Some claim it is home to aliens, underground tunnel systems, and nuclear facilities. Others believe that the lunar landing itself was filmed there. The prevalence of these rumors stems from the fact that no credible insider has ever divulged the truth about his time inside the base. Until now.

Annie Jacobsen had exclusive access to nineteen men who served the base proudly and secretly for decades and are now aged 75-92, and unprecedented access to fifty-five additional military and intelligence personnel, scientists, pilots, and engineers linked to the secret base, thirty-two of whom lived and worked there for extended periods. In Area 51, Jacobsen shows us what has really gone on in the Nevada desert, from testing nuclear weapons to building super-secret, supersonic jets to pursuing the War on Terror.

This is the first book based on interviews with eye witnesses to Area 51 history, which makes it the seminal work on the subject. Filled with formerly classified information that has never been accurately decoded for the public, Area 51 weaves the mysterious activities of the top-secret base into a gripping narrative, showing that facts are often more fantastic than fiction, especially when the distinction is almost impossible to make.
What I Can Tell You:

My husband and I have had a mutual love of all things associated with Area 51. Most of our downtime TV watching focuses around documentaries mentioning Area 51.  When the book arrived and I saw the size, I though, my goodness, how will I ever finish this book? It is after all 544 pages and weighs 1.9 lbs. Fear not my friends. The book is wonderfully written and beyond interesting and if read for entertainment and interest you will enjoy. If you are looking to fill in any "black holes" in the mystery surround Area 51, you will undoubtedly be disappointed. While reading some sections out loud my husband would chime in with "that has been dissolved"  or "that is inaccurate".  

The point is this, we may never really know what is factual and what is legend but Annie does a good job of storytelling. I was interested and while it often felt embellished or contrived, the book, if you are interested in Area 51 was entertaining. 

For more information about Area 51 or to hear the story, visit NPR for a story entitled

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy from Hachette Book Group for my honest opinion. I received no monetary compensation.

1 comment:

  1. This book is very interesting, and will keep you engaged. It seems acurate, and shines light on secret matters conducted within the US. It sort of feels like a history course in Americas best kept secrets. The author pulls declassified documents, and stories of verified area 51 a.k.a. watertown employees together for an interesting view into how American government conducts its secret experiments. In addition, there are details of who really is in charge of the United States. I used to think the President was.


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