From Publishers Weekly
Before Gorbachev, the study of UFOs in Russia depended on samizdat dissemination, but with the advent of glasnost, publication of UFO sightings is no longer restricted, according to the author. In 1990, American ufologist Vallee ( Revelations ) visited the Soviet Union with French journalist Martine Castello to talk with scientists and interview those who claim to have contact with UFOs. Like accounts of sightings in this country, the Soviet sightings generally feature space vehicles either round or saucer-shaped, with creatures, if present, more or less anthropomorphic and ranging in height from three to 10 feet, some with three eyes or outsize mouths. Only believers in UFOs will find this report convincing.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
Newsworthy brief by ufologist Vallee (Confrontations, 1990, etc.) on how the Iron Curtain hid from Western eyes not only a people in chains but also perhaps a star-fleet's worth of UFOs and their bug-eyed occupants. It was on the heels of the notorious Voronezh sightings of 1989 and the first warm breezes of glasnost that Vallee was invited by the Soviet press agency Novosti to visit the USSR to meet with leading Soviet ufologists. In this chronological account of that trip, the author blends pungent travelogue with crisp science reporting, noting, for instance, that ``the depression that engulfs you as you get closer to the Soviet Union is not a delusion....It was as if light itself had been confiscated. There was a dreary blanket over the airport buildings, the dusty air, the people themselves.'' Yet upon his arrival Vallee found myriad scientists eager to exchange notes--an ironic result, he realized, of ``censorship itself,'' which had forced Soviet ufology into ``unofficial networks'' where it flourished. In sit-downs with Soviet researchers, he discussed in detail the Tunguska explosion of 1908 (perhaps caused by destruction of a nuclear-powered craft), the Voronezh incidents, and about 40 other close encounters, and marvelled at the widespread Soviet technique of ``biolocation''--a kind of dowsing of ``biological fields''--to investigate UFOs. He also visited the cosmonauts' training center, learning--and here reporting apparently for the first time in the West--that Yuri Gagarin was drunk when he fatally crashed his airplane. And, gratifyingly, Vallee found considerable Soviet interest in his core theory that UFOs are extradimensional, not extraterrestrial. A ``preliminary catalogue'' of Soviet UFO sightings appends the text. An intriguing example of glasnost in action and an important ufological document opening up rich new veins of exploration for researchers and buffs alike. (Eight-page photo insert--not seen.) -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.