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Area 51: The Dreamland Chronicles Paperback – November 15, 1998


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Holt Paperbacks (November 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805060405
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805060409
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,749,140 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Although dozens of books have been written about the infamous Roswell, New Mexico, and "Area 51," north of Las Vegas, Nevada, both supposed sites of extraterrestrial biological entities (EBEs), most of these books rely on indirect evidence and questionable witnesses, and the present work is no exception. Darlington (The Mojave, LJ 4/1/96) conducted a series of interviews and direct observations of the now tourist-infested Area 51 site. Unfortunately, he uncovered no new evidence or credible testimony to finally prove the existence of EBEs. Darlington follows the trials and tribulations of Bob Lazar and Glenn Campbell (not the singer)?characters with dubious backgrounds who attempt to spread their beliefs in UFOs. Unless readers are interested in the life of an amateur UFO investigator or trailer life, they will likely find nothing new or even entertaining here.?Mark E. Ellis, Albany State Univ., Ga.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"This witty yet disturbing book reminds us that citizens in a free society still have the power to challenge the secret activities of government."--Steven Aftergood, The Federation of American Scientists

Catch this page-turner before those damn CIA goons seize all the copies."--Maxim magazine

Customer Reviews

His research into this book is meticulous.
Mark
We had a great time, bought the T-shirts and some UFO books at the Area 51 research center and met some of the people mentioned in the book.
D. Kralis
It's good for skeptics, enthusiasts, and interceptors alike, and what I like is that he never gives up hope.
Ufowriter

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mark on October 1, 2001
Format: Paperback
David Darlington has written what is my favorite book on the most secretive place on earth. He mixes fact with fiction, in the form of what the self-proclaimed Area 51 "experts" believe to be fact.
His research into this book is meticulous. He recounts a pretty good history of the base up through the first flights of the F-117. Many people whose names have become synonymous with Area 51 appear in this tale. Glenn Campbell, Tom Mahood, and Mark Farmer are portrayed as being more rational, while others,such as Bob Lazar, are shown as the charlatans that they are.
Fact is often stranger than fiction, or so they say. If that is true, it also means that fact is funnier than fiction. Darlington captures the colorful personalities of the people who call Dreamland their home. I was particularly amused by Glenn Campbell's affinity for Las Vegas buffets (and Bob Lazar's affinity for Las Vegas brothels...)
If the book can be faulted, it can be said that Darlington writes it from a somewhat skeptical point of view. But he really lets the characters write the story for him. Everyone has their own theory abut the mysterious base. The entertainment comes from these stories.
Don't let the title fool you. This book's really about the Area 51 fanatics, not the base. But, based on our limited knowledge of what really happens at Area 51, the Area 51 sub-culture has taken the base's place in our hearts and minds.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 24, 1999
Format: Paperback
The book was useful and interesting in it's explanations of the Groom Lake test site in the 50's, and in discussing the development of the U-2 and SR-71. Aside from that, the book offers very little in the way of useful information regarding the current activities and status of "Area 51" as it is called.
The books doesn't seem to reach a solid conclusion as to whether Area 51 is still basically a flight test center for secret (and admittedly, exotic) aircraft, or a haven for UFO's and every type of unsavory government conspiracy. Instead the book seems to leave this up to the reader, and so doesn't really accomplish very much.
Furthermore, the book later focuses on the activities of Area 51 watchers, rather than on the Groom Lake test site itself.
I am frequently disappointed by the gullibility of the American people, and the tendency to want to believe that an all-powerful government is "covering up" crashed alien spaceships, and back-engineering alien technology. Few people ever stop to consider that if the government wanted to cover something up, the most logical thing to cover it up with would be something even more interesting, hence the UFO craze. This begs the question; what is the U.S. Government REALLY hiding? For example, consider this point: Why would anyone need a 3 mile long runway to land alien saucers?
As alternate reading material I suggest the following: For anyone interested in secret and "black" aircraft projects, read "Dark Eagles". For those interested in the UFO phenomenon, read "The Real Roswell Crashed-Saucer Coverup". True, it approaches the topic from a skeptics point of view, but anyone who considers themselves to be objective should be willing to listen to a critic.
Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By B. Jackson on April 17, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book I would warmly recommend to anyone interested in the patchwork quilt of subcultures which make up the United States. A well-written and humorous book, I was very glad that Darlington did not spend much time speculating about Area 51, but rather wrote this book as a recounting of the folklore and a cross-section of the many kinds of people which inhabit the area and in their own ways contibute to "Ufology."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 20, 1999
Format: Paperback
I picked up this book as I am interested in the folklore of the area, plus in anything related to X-FIles and conspiracy. The theme of my own website is Area 51 inspired. I found this book to be entertaining and informative, a real page turner. It was written with wit and sanity, and not one of those off the wall UFO's everywhere new agey type books. It offers an indepth study of the history, key people involved, the area itself and the general folklore of Dreamland, a military research base that the gummint claims does not exist. Anyone who is interested in learning more about Area 51 should definitely read this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Blue-Rat on October 20, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This book is not really about Area 51, it's about the people obsessed with the place, and their battles with the US government. Sure there's background detail but Darlington obviously finds the conspiracy phenomenon and the way it alters lives more interesting than trying to find 'the truth'.
Very funny but also quite depressing, one gets the sense that Darlington is trying to show how these individual obsessions with Area 51 are ultimately futile, like flies swatted by a mad horse.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 13, 1998
Format: Hardcover
This book is remarkable for maintaining a foot in wonderland and a foot outside in the mundane and boring world -- and Darlington, our observer, seems ready to go whichever way the evidence finally points -- but it keeps pointing back and forth across that strange boundary.
At first I thought that Darlington's style was inching toward self-display, but now I would praise his prose as brilliant and evocative. He paints a fascinating portrait of the culture surrounding Area 51, a portrait that is aesthetically vivid, intellectually stimulating, respectful of the wildlife and tongue-in-cheek, all at the same time -- perhaps his characterization of Glenn Campbell is a bit of a projection: "even as he wallowed in the tackiness . . .he somehow managed to remain detached, . . .recognizing and embracing his own alienation."
If you want to think some new thoughts, read this book.
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