Dispatches from the Edge : A Memoir of War, Disasters, and Survival (Hardcover)

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Disorganized and fast paced

by Vinny P on 1/22/2008

Anderson Cooper’s memoir (which is more a biography) is a face-paced, jumpy, disorganized conglomeration of memories. While Cooper has many interesting stories, he never spends enough time on any one to effectively probe into them and activate the reader’s senses. The horrible structure, lack of conflict, and little time spent on topics makes this book unfulfilling. Cooper starts by giving a background of a tsunami, explaining what it is and how it works. All of a sudden, he jumps into his child hood. In this memoir, Cooper jams as much about his life as he possibly can. The structure of the book is confusing. The childhood events in no way relate to the current day events. It seems like Anderson Cooper wrote a memoir and cut it up with his memories. The lack of a plot really hinders this book from achieving its full potential. With a lack of plot, comes a lack of conflict. Cooper merely tells story after story, never really building suspense or having a conflict. Without a conflict or rising action, the story becomes monotonous and repetitive for the reader. Often losing interest, you need to find a random place to stop because the 209-page book only has seven chapters. They seem endless and you struggle from page-to-page. One paragraph is about the most Cooper spends on any one episode. He gives such a short description of each event, the reader’s emotions are never really triggered to connect with the characters or the plot. He jumps from issue to issue, creating a mind-boggling interweaving of mini-stories that have absolutely nothing to do with each other. While it contains hundreds of intriguing stories, Cooper only gives a bit of each; no where near enough to be effective. He fails to build any plot of conflict in the memoir, and his structure is senseless and confusing. Overall the book was poor. It would be very interesting if Cooper excluded his life stories and wrote more about “war, disasters, and survival,” as advertised on the cover, the book would be a bigger, better hit.

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Product Overview

Over the last year, few people have witnessed more scenes of chaos and conflict than Cooper Anderson of CNN. He shares his own experiences of traversing the globe, covering the world's most astonishing stories.

From the Publisher:
Few people have witnessed more scenes of chaos and conflict around the world than Anderson Cooper, whose groundbreaking coverage on CNN has changed the way we watch the news. In this gripping, candid, and remarkably powerful memoir, he offers an unstinting, up-close view of the most harrowing crises of our time, and the profound impact they have had on his life.

After growing up on Manhattan's Upper East Side, Cooper felt a magnetic pull toward the unknown, an attraction to the far corners of the earth. If he could keep moving, and keep exploring, he felt he could stay one step ahead of his past, including the fame surrounding his mother, Gloria Vanderbilt, and the tragic early deaths of his father and older brother. As a reporter, the frenetic pace of filing dispatches from war-torn countries, and the danger that came with it, helped him avoid having to look too closely at the pain and loss that was right in front of him.

But recently, during the course of one extraordinary, tumultuous year, it became impossible for him to continue to separate his work from his life, his family's troubled history from the suffering people he met all over the world. From the tsunami in Sri Lanka to the war in Iraq to the starvation in Niger and ultimately to Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and Mississippi, Cooper gives us a firsthand glimpse of the devastation that takes place, both physically and emotionally, when the normal order of things is violently ruptured on such a massive scale. Cooper had been in his share of life-threatening situations before -- ducking fire on the streets of war-torn Sarejevo, traveling on his own to famine-stricken Somalia, witnessing firsthand the genocide in Rwanda -- but he had never seen human misery quite like this. Writing with vivid memories of his childhood and early career as a roving correspondent, Cooper reveals for the first time how deeply affected he has been by the wars, disasters, and tragedies he has witnessed, and why he continues to be drawn to some of the most perilous places on earth.

Striking, heartfelt, and utterly engrossing, Dispatches from the Edge is an unforgettable memoir that takes us behind the scenes of the cataclysmic events of our age and allows us to see them through the eyes of one of America's most trusted, fearless, and pioneering reporters.

Specifications

Publisher Harpercollins
Mfg Part# 9780061132384
SKU 202111137
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 0061132381
Release Date 4/10/2007

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Disorganized and fast paced by Vinny P on Jan 22, 2008

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