Fail-Safe

  • by Eugene Burdick, Harvey Wheeler
  • Narrated by Kevin Kraft
  • 8 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Something has gone wrong. A group of American bombers armed with nuclear weapons is streaking past the fail-safe point, beyond recall, and no one knows why. Their destination - Moscow.
In a bomb shelter beneath the White House, the calm young president turns to his Russian translator and says, "I think we are ready to talk to Premier Kruschchev." Not far away, in the War Room at the Pentagon, the secretary of defense and his aides watch with growing anxiety as the luminous blips crawl across a huge screen map. High over the Bering Strait in a large Vindicator bomber, a colonel stares in disbelief at the attack code number on his fail-safe box and wonders if it could possibly be a mistake.
First published in 1962, when America was still reeling from the Cuban Missile Crisis, Fail-Safe reflects the apocalyptic attitude that pervaded society during the height of the Cold War, when disaster could have struck at any moment. As more countries develop nuclear capabilities and the potential for new enemies lurks on the horizon, Fail-Safe and its powerful issues continue to be relevant.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

This 1962 novel is one of the best suspense...

...thrillers ever. The premise is that the US accidentally launches a nuclear attack on Russia in 1962 and then tries to stop it. Written at the height of the Cold War Fail-Safe presents what the authors believed was a plausible scenario.

This is another case where the audio version of a book is clearly superior to the print version. I've never listened to a Kevin Kraft narrated book before. Kraft is incredibly outstanding in narrating Fail-Safe. His Boston accent when speaking the part of the US president made me believe I was listening to JFK.

Only 36 Audible listeners have rated Fail-Safe and only 7 have written reviews. Fail-Safe deserves much more attention!! (There have been 237 Amazon reviews.)
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- Wayne "I love espionage, legal, and detective thrillers but listen to most genres. Very frequent reviews. No plot spoilers! Please excuse my typos!"

Fail Safe Audio Book Good For The Drive!

Would you try another book from Eugene Burdick and Harvey Wheeler and/or Kevin Kraft?

Kevin Kraft took what was an extremely dry topic and infused enthusiasm into the audio presentation.


What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

I was surprised at what the president of the United States did after the unintentional act perpetrated upon Russia.


Which scene was your favorite?

The ending was my favorite part - really unexpected.


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

No - I think the subject matter may be too dated to be appealing to a contemporary audience.


Any additional comments?

The narrator did a very good job presenting the different characters. I would definitely listen to another book narrated by Mr. Kraft.

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- Jenny

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-12-2013
  • Publisher: Audible Studios