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Download Area 51: An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Area 51: An Uncensored History of Americas Top Secret Military Base Audiobook, by Annie Jacobsen Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,221 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Annie Jacobsen Narrator: Annie Jacobsen Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: May 2011 ISBN: 9781609410926
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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 US 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.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A highly readable history that is a dream for aviation and military buffs…an engaging look at the secret world in the Nevada desert.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • Cauldron-stirring. [AREA 51] is not science fiction. It is an assertive account, revelatory ... Ms. Jacobsen has put together a set of strong allegations about Area 51's covert history ... Her research into the world of 'overhead,' the aerial espionage that needed to be developed in extreme secrecy, is compellingly hard-hittting ... the book is noteworthy for its author's dogged devotion to her research. The New York Times
  • A compelling narrative of 50 years of covert operations by the CIA, the U.S. military, and the mysterious "Atomic Energy Commission".... Her meticulous research makes for a fascinating read, as it intersperses the accounts of secret government projects with anecdotes from the people who made those projects happen. Rachel Larimore, Slate
  • An informative history...about the creativity, political acumen and courage of the high-flying Cold Warriors who sought to protect the free world in the decades after World War II. Andrew Dunn, Bloomberg
  • "Jacobsen's take veers from the standard conspiracy narrative in just about every imaginable respect."Earl Swift, Popular Mechanics
  • What Jacobsen believes happened in the New Mexican desert is more frightening than UFO conspiracies... Elizabeth Bair, Dallas Observer
  • “A cross between The Right Stuff and The X Files.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “More than enough to convince the listeners that there’s more in this desert country than sand and scorpions.”

    AudioFile

  • “An endlessly fascinating—and quite scary—book.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • A Los Angeles Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dean Sundmark | 1/24/2014

    " History of area 51 based on declassified materials. Mostly a history of the development of spy planes, addresses CIA, cold war, Cuban missile crisis and culture of secrecy. Not much on paranormal in this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Don | 1/23/2014

    " Long on history; short on sensationalism at least until the very end; this book tells us the story of various government efforts, primarily by the CIA, to perfect the art of spying. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Socrates | 1/18/2014

    " It was interesting and filled in some gaps of knowledge. I didn't know about some really cool technology that was purposely left behind (like at jackass flats) because of politics. Hopefully someday we'll go back and dig up the tech specs and use it for something good. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dooley | 1/11/2014

    " Enjoyed this book. It provided plausible answers for questions I thought I would never know. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rebecca | 1/5/2014

    " Very interesting book! The author was a little dramatic about some things -I stopped counting how many times she used the word "unprecedented", but otherwise it was a very interesting history of America's nuke programs, spy planes and all things classified at Area 51. I am not usually a big reader of non-fiction, but I recommend this one. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ellin | 12/28/2013

    " Interesting and scary book with lots of declassified information regarding Area 51 history. I liked it but I had a hard time getting through it...was expecting it to be a page turner and was disappointed that it wasn't. Wished it had been in chronological order...felt like the stories were all over the place in terms of when they happened. But I still liked it and found the events the author related fascinating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Max Wilson | 12/24/2013

    " The "real" story of the crash at Roswell (via recently declassified documents) is unbelievably amazing and something I hadn't considered. Great read so far. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pedro | 12/23/2013

    " Very entertaining read with a very mild degree of tinfoil hat paranoia. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Trevor | 12/11/2013

    " Interesting and controversial. I heard an interview with this author on NPR and decided to read the book. Some very controversial suggestions here, beyond even what you might expect for this topic. Worth reading. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andie | 11/23/2013

    " Not about little green men...a lot of great info about the aircraft and weapons that were tested there "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kim G | 10/25/2013

    " My inner X-Files fanatic compelled me to pick this book up. The truth is out there, just saying. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jo | 6/26/2013

    " Being a fan of the old tv show The X Files I thought this would be right up my street. I couldn't get into it at all and gave up after 2 or 3 chapters. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Monty | 4/28/2013

    " great well-researched documentation of military & intelligence history that gets flushed right down the fucking toilet in the last chapter with silly horseshit "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maryanne Flynn | 2/18/2013

    " Very interesting. I had no idea how much nuclear testing we had done in Nevada. The author's explanation of The Roswell incident is incredible. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Charlene | 12/1/2012

    " Very interesting ... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Christopher | 7/8/2012

    " This was the best book I have read for a long time. Jacobsen did a superb job of researching the facts. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Annette | 3/21/2012

    " fascinating and chilling "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Genie | 2/26/2012

    " Interesting, very detailed book. She saves the most interesting until the very last but according to the author, there are many items in the book that have not been previously known. I do not know if this is true or not. It is also hard to evaluate her version of the Roswell events. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul | 2/4/2012

    " Some glaring errors in here. But is an interesting read for all those intersted in conspiracy theories and secret stuf. Worth a read but don't buy it! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Holly | 11/25/2011

    " If you're looking for a book about alien autopsies and little green men then this book is *not* for you. It was however one of the most interesting books I have ever read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Alain | 9/28/2011

    " Why too much BS about flying saucers and other patiently ridiculous stuff to make the things that should have been credible, credible. Some good parts, but I can't trust the judgement of an author who reports, with apparent wide-eyed credulity, on ET type stories as if they could possibly be true. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jana | 6/30/2011

    " Not likely to finish. But some pretty interesting and relatively credible info in the front - bombshell weirdness in the back. Soapbox: An unidentified flying object is just that - not necessarily an alien spacecraft and if the Air Force tests stuff out there, well . . . "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sharon | 6/26/2011

    " I'm not sure what's more embarrassing, that I read this or that I tagged it as non-fiction. I was enthralled by it, but that doesn't mean it isn't junk. Get your basic tabloid-style sensationalist journalism here. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joe | 6/19/2011

    " Interesting Book. Appears to have spent much time reading declassified government records. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Michael | 6/14/2011

    " The first and last chapters were quite interesting. The rest was a bit tedious. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Socrates | 6/14/2011

    " It was interesting and filled in some gaps of knowledge. I didn't know about some really cool technology that was purposely left behind (like at jackass flats) because of politics. Hopefully someday we'll go back and dig up the tech specs and use it for something good. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nick | 6/11/2011

    " I really enjoy timeline like reading and historical accounts. I was a little disappointed when mid-way through the book, the accounts started to jump back and forth in the timeline. I was also unhappy with how quickly the big reveal had very little build up. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 6/9/2011

    " Bit drawn out - some interesting stories but a bit repetitive. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jim | 6/8/2011

    " Given that I am not made of paranoid cloth, nor am I much interested in UFO hype,
    it was very interesting to read the history of this part of Nevada based on the government declassified information.
    Helps explain a few thing, though the conspiratists among us will continue . . . "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Chris | 6/7/2011

    " I kind of wish I had skipped to the last 10 pages.There are certainly more authoritative works on the development of the stealth program by the CIA and its early missions and these topics take up 95% of the book.

    Those last 10 pages certainly will stick in my memory though. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kiira | 6/7/2011

    " As the book went on it became more and more disorganized, often skipping between decades within the same chapter. I'm not all that familiar with post-WWII American history, so I learned a lot. Definitely interesting! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ryan | 6/7/2011

    " Very enlightening on the whole nuclear testing and cold war era secrecy. "

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About the Author

Annie Jacobsen is a contributing editor at Los Angeles Times magazine and an investigative reporter whose work has also appeared in the National Review and the Dallas Morning News. Her two-part series The Road to Area 51 was one of the most read in the Los Angeles Times magazine. A graduate of Princeton University, she lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two sons.