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Even Silence Has an End: My Six Years of Captivity in the Colombian Jungle Hardcover – September 21, 2010

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Even Silence Has an End: My Six Years of Captivity in the Colombian Jungle + Captive: 2,147 Days of Terror in the Colombian Jungle + Out of Captivity: Surviving 1,967 Days in the Colombian Jungle
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Press HC, The; First Edition edition (September 21, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594202656
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594202650
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.2 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (158 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #274,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ingrid Betancourt lived in France and New Zealand before returning to Colombia to campaign for the presidency, when she was kidnapped. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Born December 25, 1961, in Bogotá, Colombia, Ingrid Betancourt was a politician and presidential candidate celebrated for her determination to combat widespread corruption. In 2002 she was taken hostage by the FARC, a brutal terrorist guerrilla organization. For more than six and a half years, the FARC held her hostage in the Colombian jungle. She was rescued on July 2, 2008.

Customer Reviews

This is a true story of the six + years that Ingrid Betancourt spent in the jungle of Columbia.
Clearly Ingrid Betancourt is an incredibly intelligent person to have written such a detailed account of her time in captivity.
Michael Poore
If I had not read the other books and knew so much about the story already I would maybe see things very differently.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

170 of 195 people found the following review helpful By B. Bauer on September 21, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I managed to get a pre-press copy of this book and was a bit stunned by its heftiness (it's well over 500 pages). But from the moment I cracked the first page, I simply couldn't put it down - I was often so engrossed in it during my commute I'd stay on the bus longer just to finish the particular chapter I was reading! Needless to say, the book is extremely well-written and has a very different tone than Ms. Betancourt's first book. Reading Even Silence Has An End, I felt every blister on her long marches through the jungle, shuddered with cold when she describes having to put on (again and again) damp and fetid clothes, and cringed at every abuse hurled her way by her captors.

I've read numerous other "hostage memoirs" and one thing I appreciate about Ms. Betancourt's book is that she acknowledges how captivity led to behavior she resented in herself. In this way, any negative comment about her fellow hostages is countered by holding up a mirror to herself and realizing that it is the circumstances of their imprisonment, not their characters, which caused strife and bitterness among the group (I applaud her for taking the high road and not resorting to name-calling). My only (minor) criticism is that aside from a brief chapter in the early pages, little is mentioned about her post-hostage life. I would love to read more about her reflections and adjustments, which must have been enormous and challenging, but maybe that's another book in the works.
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82 of 94 people found the following review helpful By J. Lee TOP 1000 REVIEWER on September 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I read this and then Out of Captivity: Surviving 1,967 Days in the Colombian Jungleto get a broader picture after seeing her on Oprah. Here's the ups and downs of this one for me:

Much of the time, I was frustrated and annoyed with Betancourt. Despite her being in a REALLY horrific situation, she generally comes across as incredibly arrogant, self-entitled and many times as bratty and foolish. At some points, I almost felt like the FARC would have happily given her back just to be rid of her if she hadn't been so politically important to them.

- She displays a pattern of making reckless decisions, failing to choose her battles with care, not thinking through consequences and deliberately antagonizing her captors. Ultimately, these result in probably much worse treatment for her and others dragged into her sphere.

- She neither details nor takes responsibility for any of her own selfish behaviour, justifying it as things everyone did on occasion given the circumstances. I believe this. But, then she throws Rojas, her initial captive companion, as well as others under the bus about their behaviour in petty detail.

Still, here's the thing - it's a fascinating story of survival. She's an exceptionally gifted writer. And, she's incredibly courageous even if sometimes her actions seem misguided or not well thought out.

- I can't imagine a place worse than the Amazon jungle to be held captive - forced marches of days through jungle and swamps, little decent food, bugs, diseases, chains, etc. The FARC are evil.
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223 of 273 people found the following review helpful By Natasha on September 25, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The story of Ingrid Betancourt is controversial. I read her book along with other books written by some of her fellow hostages and here is my recommendation: If you are looking for entertainment, this book can provide that. If you are looking for the full story, all the facts and a fair assessment, you should also read books written by the other hostages, such as "Out of Captivity" published in 2009 and a New York Times Bestseller, an excellent book written by the three Americans who were kidnapped and lived under the same conditions with Betancourt. There are other books available, written by some of the other hostages, there are also articles written in reputable news papers and journals about this subject as well.

Betancourt entered the enemy territory on her own free will after being advised against it by the Colombian government, informed of the dangers involved, and signing a release form stating that she assumed responsibility for entering the FARC territory. This would make her a victim by her own doing. All the other testimony offered by all her fellow hostages, is consistent in portraying Ingrid as an abusive and heartless human being, who was willing to endanger the lives of others to satisfy her needs. This considering that according to the hostages, Ingrid actually received special treatment while she herself treated everyone else in a ruthless manner. There are readers who would justify Ingrid's behavior due to the extreme conditions that all the hostages were subjected to. However, one would have to wonder, if all the hostages faced the same extreme conditions, why did no other hostage besides Ingrid, allegedly become vicious and abusive.
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97 of 119 people found the following review helpful By Ann Olswang on September 21, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Ingrid Betancourt's story is astounding. In 2002, she was taken captive by the Colombian guerrilla group the FARC and held in the dense Amazon jungle as a political hostage for six long years. Every page of this book brings you deeper into the jungle, so much so that every time I looked up from reading I had to remind myself I was not trapped in the Amazon, I was not held captive... Her eloquence brings the deprivation, the hostility, the fear, the squabbling, and the suffocation of the jungle to life. She is at times precise, at times poetic, but never maudlin or over-dramatic. The story speaks for itself, and she allows the events to unfold with natural grace. She is often self-critical when describing the arguments and tensions that arose between the hostages, who spent months and years in forced proximity. Eventually Ms. Betancourt was isolated from the other hostages, and one can only imagine the psychological torture of being chained, being denied permission to speak or even wave to the other prisoners, some of whom had become close friends. This is not a political account, nor is it a settling of scores, it is simply a story of survival under the worst possible circumstances. I cannot imagine feeling anything but awe for this woman.
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