Top critical review
3 of 4 people found this helpful
Alright, but I prefer the DVD
on April 17, 2012
First of all I want to state that this isn't a bad book. As a factual accounting of K-129's background and Project Azorian, it's very well put together. But I bought it hoping it would supplement the documentary on DVD, and that wasn't the case. While the book has more facts and history than the DVD which historians and trivia buffs will appreciate, those details didn't add to the narrative, and even distracted from it. (Meal schedules from the Glomar Explorer? Really?) Some of the writing is slightly awkward, though not enough to be a big issue, but overall it feels rather dry (if you'll excuse the pun) and clinical. What I thought was the most dramatic event during the entire salvage operation, which was covered in detail in the documentary, was over in a few short, factual paragraphs in this book. I felt that the only substantive material not covered in the documentary is the discussion of possible causes for the K-129 disaster.
The documentary, which I cannot recommend highly enough, does get a bit technical at times but is for the most part a gripping and dramatic accounting of one of the greatest maritime engineering feats in history. This book, sadly, failed to draw me in in the same way, and adds very little to what you learn in the film. If you're looking for an exhaustively researched reference book, by all means pick this up. If you seek an engaging account of an audacious Cold War mission that nearly pulled off the impossible, stick to the DVD.