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I was completely enthralled with the beginning half of this book - the author wove a good story and kept me entranced with true events about a disturbing time. I found myself suggesting this to many other "boomers" who might, like I, have protested the Vietnam War in the 60s, didn't know the clear response to people like us from the FBI and have been intrigued by the despotism of J. Edgar Hoover.
It is a good read but not all the way through. I got bogged down with the level of detail that Betty Medsger used and found that her story telling ability didn't continue through the second half of the book.
Like a former reader, I also found it puzzling why a man read the book when it is written by a woman. I also found the editorializing he did through the way he read the book to be annoying.
Despite all of this, I didn't stop reading the book because I do think those at the heart of the book - the men and women who carried out the burglary -- need to be honored and praised for their courage. Each of us needs to know what despicable acts were perpetrated in the name of democracy and learn from the knowledge.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
The heist of the century didn’t involve banks, jewels, or art.
A secret team of people from all walks of life banded together in order to bring down one of the most powerful men in American history. It took bravery. It required ingenuity: they couldn't pick the door lock, so they left a note asking that the door be left open...and it worked!
There was betrayal: one backed out and threatened to turn them in. Finally, there was loyalty—they kept their secret for forty years.
The Burglary revisits what the American people didn’t KNOW before the Media burglary. Dissident groups knew they were being torn apart from the inside, but nobody could prove it.
What the burglars found put a light on Hoover’s COINTELPRO, and the FBI’s illegal and sadistic suppression of dissent in America.
Chapter 1 asks, “Who would to go to prison to save dissent?”
These were ordinary people in the anti-war movement: “a professor of religion and former freedom rider; a day-care director; a physicist,a cab driver, an antiwar activist, a lock picker, a graduate student haunted by members of her family lost to the Holocaust and the passivity of German civilians under Nazi rule.”
Each one stepping outside the law to do what they felt was right.
Bronson Pinchot, Audible’s "Narrator of the Year," gives yet another stellar performance. He has such a feel for inflection and intonation that his narration that I knew.... we'd found the one. I asked Betty to introduce herself and read her very special acknowledgements, so you'll hear her wonderful voice as well.
26 of 27 people found this review helpful
This is the original conspiracy story. It will have you saying "no" quite often. Truth is more stranger than fiction here and it is scary to know that leaders that are so powerful can be so off the wall.
Read brilliantly, I listened more than once because the story matter is mind blowing!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?
The basic story is interesting, important and fascinating but the mountains of irrelevant detail, repetition and circumlocution means that this book is only for those who really have nothing better to do.
What will your next listen be?
It might be a book on J Edgar Hoover - this certainly was not one.
What didn’t you like about Betty Medsger and Bronson Pinchot ’s performance?
The writing is agonizingly prosaic and uninteresting despite the subject matter which in other hands would be a cracking story. Bronson is only as good as the material.
You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?
No - apart from the underlying story
Any additional comments?
0 of 2 people found this review helpful