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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (120 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: W. Craig Reed Narrator: Tom Weiner Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Few know how close the world has come to annihilation better than the warriors who served America during the tense, forty-five-year struggle known as the Cold War. Yet for decades, their work has remained shrouded in secrecy. Now, in this riveting history, W. Craig Reed, a former navy diver and fast-attack submariner, provides an eye-opening, pulse-pounding narrative of the underwater struggles and espionage operations between the US and the USSR that brought us to the brink of nuclear war more than once.

Red November is filled with hair-raising, behind-the-scenes stories that take you deep beneath the surface and into the action during the entire Cold War period from 1946 through 1992. Reed served aboard submarines involved in espionage operations, and his father was a top military intelligence specialist intimately involved in the Cuban Missile Crisis. Reed is one of the first authors to obtain so many in-depth interviews with dozens of navy divers, espionage operatives, submariners, and government officials on both sides (including several Soviet submarine captains) about the most daring and decorated missions of the conflict, including top-secret Ivy Bells, Boresight, Bulls Eye, and Holystone operations.

Transcending traditional submarine, espionage, and Cold War accounts, Red November is an up-close examination of one of the most dangerous times in world history and an intimate look at the men and women who participated in our country’s longest and most expensive underwater war.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “If Tom Clancy had turned The Hunt for Red October into a nonfiction thriller, W. Craig Reed’s Red November might be the result. Here is the full-throttle and riveting story of espionage, secret missions, and the never-before-told tales of submariners on the front lines of a clandestine war. Not to be missed!”

    James Rollins, best-selling author of The Doomsday Key

  • Red November is palpably gripping and packs the excitement of a real-life thriller. I felt like I was literally on-board a submarine in the middle of a hair-raising mission and on the brink of World War III.”

    David Morrell, bestselling author of The Shimmer

  • Red November is a compelling narrative that covers most of the years that I rode the boats. The action in the book is particularly intriguing, as I shared many of the same experiences endured by the characters portrayed within the pages. Submariners will enjoy the book, as did I.”

    T. Michael Bircumshaw, Editor, American Submariner

  • Red November is a terrific, real-life thriller, filled with larger than life warriors, technological wizardry, undersea games of chicken, and a civilian world perched unknowing on the brink of push-button nuclear destruction. History buffs, naval warfare enthusiasts, and all Tom Clancy fans are guaranteed to love this book.”

    Barry Eisler, author of Fault Line

  • “This is an astonishing and important book. With its new disclosures about covert submarine operations during the Cold War, and especially its eye-opening account of what really happened at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, Red November is a book that anyone with an interest in espionage or clandestine naval operations should read.”

    George Friedman, author of America’s Secret War and The Next 100 Years

  • “This is an astonishing and important book…Red November is a book that anyone with an interest in espionage or clandestine naval operations should read.”

    George Friedman, author of America’s Secret War and The Next 100 Years

  • Red November delivers the real life feel and fears of submariners who risked their lives to keep the peace. Smart, detailed, and highly entertaining, this is a story everyone should read. I live in a submarine town and I can tell you, men who live underwater for 90 days at time, ferrying nuclear weapons, are unsung heroes. My hat is off to Craig Reed for telling their story.”

    Steve Berry, author of The Paris Vendetta

  • Red November is one of the most suspenseful and frightening books I’ve read this year. It gives you a new appreciation for the major role submarines play in shaping world history. They may be out of sight, but after reading this book, they will never again be out of mind.” 

    Raymond Obstfeld, co-author with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, On the Shoulders of Giants: My Journey Through the Harlem Renaissance

  • “This history of the Cold War beneath the sea reads very much like a thriller…For serious submarine buffs, a feast.”


Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Gary Brecht | 2/15/2014

    " Written by one of the participants in the cold war submarine warfare of the past couple decades, this is an inside glimpse into the nerve wracking operations undertaken by our military to preserve superiority. The brinkmanship of the sixties and subsequent covert naval operations take center stage in this non-fiction account. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Sheri | 1/26/2014

    " Having "submariner blood" on both sides of the family (My maternal great uncle went down on a sub off of Kiska in WWII and my father was a cold-war submariner), I have read several books on the subject. Although the subject matter can get pretty technical sometimes, the overall stories always fascinate me. Putting a small group of people in a enclosed area and subjecting them to danger is the ultimate test of the human psyche. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Ed | 1/4/2014

    " Book was ok, book kind of Wandered all over the place. I personally like Blind Man's Bluff a lot better. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Sam | 11/17/2013

    " this is a absoultly great book, and opens your eyes to just how close war could of broken out. it is a great read for anyone that is intrested in the cold war or other wars "

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About the Author

W. Craig Reed served as a U.S. Navy reconnaissance diver, submarine-weapons technician, and special-operations photographer deployed on nuclear fast-attack submarines. He earned commendations for completing top-secret operations during the Cold War and is an alumnus or member of several military, veteran, and technology associations. Born into a Navy family on the island of Guam, he is now a partner in a technology marketing-consulting firm and lives in Silicon Valley, California.