Sunday, March 16, 2008
Non-Fiction Monday: Naked in Baghdad
Naked in Baghdad, by Anne Garrels
Okay, if you've looked through some of these posts lately, you'll notice that I have a thing for NPR. It's been that way for a long time. Working there is still one of my dream jobs (along with full-time writer, general counsel for a totally law-abiding company, and just about any of the recurring roles on The West Wing).
One of the things I love about Naked in Baghdad is that it reminds me that, while working for NPR may happen someday, I'm never going to be a war correspondent. (Yes, I do occasionally need the reminder.)
Other reviews: Bookloons, A Modest Construct, Curled Up With a Good Book
Meet the author: NPR bio
What stuck with me: I can't say enough great things about this book. I will say that I listened to the audio version, so my take on the book is shaped by listening to Garrels and her husband Vint Lawrence read their respective sections. Both of them have a wonderful way with words, along with just the right touch of sarcasm and irony.
Naked in Baghdad also makes me want to re-learn Russian, which the non-Arabic-speaking Garrels was able to fall back on again and again. Not that I expect to spend a lot of time in countries that were once supported by the Soviet bloc, but you never know.
Where this book is going next: My copy, being audio, isn't going anywhere. But there are two types of people I recommend the book to - those who want to read about the Iraq war, and potential journalists.
Makes me want to read: Thomas Ricks' Fiasco has been on my TBR list for a long time, along with Imperial Life in the Emerald City. I also want to read The Punishment of Virtue, another book with an NPR connection.
Makes me want to reread: Noah Adams' All Things Considered.
Bonus: I didn't think about it when I set out to write this review, but this weekend marks the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. In the New York Times, there's a retrospective by John Burns, who makes a few appearances in Naked in Baghdad. The Washington Post's book section is also devoted to war analysis this week.
The Non-Fiction Monday roundup is at Picture Book of the Day.