Area 51: An Uncensored History of America’s Top Secret Military Base
Author: Annie Jacobsen, $27.99
The secrets of Area 51: An Uncensored History
It is the most famous military installation in the world. And it doesn’t exist. Located a mere 75 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 55 additional military and intelligence personnel, scientists, pilots, and engineers linked to the secret base, 32 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 thought about the secrets of Area 51:
I was very anxious to read Area 51 and, boy, it sure did not disappoint. It’s not a quick or effortless read, mind you…there is a lot of information packed into its 500+ pages. That isn’t to say it’s overwhelming, though, because it is anything but. I just found myself wanting to read slowly and methodically, so I could soak it all in, and really get a handle on the importance and the impact of the information Annie Jacobsen provided.
I will admit, I’m a sucker for conspiracy theories (not that I buy into them lock, stock, and barrel, mind you…but I do find them fascinating to dissect) and the “secrets” of Area 51 has no shortage of them. This has it all and, from my first reading of it, it appears Jacobson has done extensive (to say the least) research into every aspect — and all the secrets — of Area 51 (not the least of which is the Roswell “incident”). If you have any interest in American politics, American history, American spy programs (such as the development of the U2 program)…you get the idea…this book is a must-read. It simply can’t be ignored or, heaven forbid, overlooked.
While Area 51 might not answer every question or resolve every dispute, it is, without question, a book that has been a long time in the making. Reading this book was like an indulgence for me, a guilty pleasure — an inside look into a world so shrouded in secrecy that we’ve become intrigued/fascinated/obsessed with it. This book definitely filled in a lot of holes in my knowledge about the secrets of Area 51 and should, at the very least, provide some satisfaction to even the most hard-core theorists.
I was not compensated for writing this post. I was provided a sample copy of Area 51 to facilitate my review. My opinions are 100% honest and 100% mine. This post contains an affiliate link.