Thursday, April 12, 2018

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

This nonfiction account by journalist Kim Barker takes place in Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2004-09.  Some nonfiction can be pretty dry; this is anything but.  I listened to the audiobook and it was a hoot!  Between the reader's expert inflections and the author's dry wit, I found myself laughing as I wended my way to Wegman's on Saturday.  Barker is a serious student of the absurd.

Aside from deftly explaining the often utterly confusing politics of the region, Barker gives the reader a sense of what it's like to live in a war zone, something most of us Americans know nothing about.  She describes how she and her fellow journalists got a high from the danger, some of them deliberately seeking seriously unstable situations and barely making it out alive. 

If you ever wondered where the Taliban came from, and why Afghanistan has been at war for so long, this book helps you to understand the country's history and why, incidentally, our attempts to "fix" things over there are not working. 

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