Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2012-10-22
- Reviewer: Staff
Bestselling author Bowden (Black Hawk Down) follows the long and often cold trail from 9/11 to a compound in Abbottabad, Paki-stan, where âa hand-picked... Dream Teamâ of U.S. Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden, in this sketchy and surprisingly vapid account. Relying on interviews with President Barack Obama and many of the national security officials directly involved in the planning of the mission, Bowden shows how âa sophisticated targeting engineâ that included supercomputers and surveillance drones tracked down the elusive terrorist mastermind beginning with a single name. Bowden did not interview any of the SEAL team members on the raid, and the action takes place mostly in comfortable government offices far from the tip of the spear. Despite silence from the SEALs, the omniscient author knows what was on their minds (âThe one thing... always in their thoughts was danger...â) and in their hearts (they âwere veterans of many raids, hardened to violence and deathâ). The hero of Bowdenâs narrative seems to be Obama, who risked his presidency on the type of uncertain raid that had doomed Jimmy Carter. Readers expecting a detailed, dramatic account of the raid on the Abbottabad compound will be disappointed. Agent: Robert Barnett, Williams & Connolly. (Oct. 16)