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Ranging from war journalism to crime stories to profiles on influential leaders to pieces on sports, gambling and the impending impact of supercomputers on the practice of medicine, this collection is Bowden at his best.
Pieces that will appear in the collection include, "The Three Battles of Wanat", which tells the story of a bloody engagement in Afghanistan and the extraordinary years-long fallout within the US military, "The Drone Warrior," in which Bowden examines the strategic, legal and moral issues surrounding armed drones, and "The Case of the Vanishing Blonde," which first appeared in Vanity Fair and recounts the chilling story of a woman who went missing from a Florida hotel only to turn up near the Everglades, brutally beaten, raped and still alive.
Also included are profiles on a diverse range of notable and influential people such as Joe Biden, Kim Jong-un, Judy Clarke who is well known for defending America's worst serial killers and David Simon, the creator of the successful HBO series The Wire.
The author of the bestselling Black Hawk Down will please fans and win new ones with this bracing collection of essays. Bowden is in his element charting the familiar and complex territory of American engagement in foreign conflicts, as in the titular essay, a tragic and nuanced account of "the worst single day in the seven-year Afghan conflict," in 2008, and its repercussions for the U.S. military and the families of the American soldiers whose lives were lost. But those only familiar with Bowden's war reportage will be pleasantly surprised to discover the variety of topics he has tackled in this collection, which includes a profile of Kim Jong Un that is by turns enlightening, level-headed, and hilarious, and an essay about journalism in the age of the Internet. In his introduction, Bowden justly thanks the Atlantic and Vanity Fair, which published the majority of pieces collected here, for their continued commitment to funding quality, in-depth reporting. With his rigorous and respectful approach to his subjects, multifaceted viewpoint, and wry sense of humor, Bowden proves that American journalism hasn't kicked the bucket yet.