Friday, May 29, 2009

The Irregulars and Operatives, Spies, and Saboteurs

The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British spy ring in wartime Washington by Jennet Conant and Operatives, Spies, and Saboteurs by Patrick K. O'Donnell, non-fiction category

You would think that a real life book about espionage would be interesting, but two books in a row proved that not to be the case. Maybe it's because the author has to leave out too much, or because there is not enough good source information, so the author has to guess. But both of these were hard to get through. Too much boring detail to get through and not enough pictures. Too much politics, not enough action.

I really enjoy Roald Dahl as an author, so I was looking forward to The Irregulars. I had no idea that Britain was working so hard to sway American policy toward World War II and get Americans involved. This should have been an interesting book. But I got lost in all the names, and if anything interesting happened, I missed it. Two stars is being generous, but I did enjoy the biographical parts about Dahl's family life and early writing career.

The second book was about the OSS, organized by division. WAAAAAY too much detail. There were maps, but I was still confused about what was going on. The most interesting part to me was about the 'amphibious squadron' - sorry, I had a Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow moment. But you know what I mean, the forerunners of the Navy Seals. I also liked the part about how the OSS got started. But I basically skipped around in this one too. Neither is recommended unless you are a major WWII buff or a big fan of Roald Dahl's

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