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Plan of Attack


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About the Author

Bob Woodward is an associate editor at The Washington Post, where he has worked for forty-seven years. He has shared in two Pulitzer Prizes, first for the Post's coverage of the Watergate scandal with Carl Bernstein, and second in 2003 as the lead reporter for coverage of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. He has authored or coauthored eighteen books, all of which have been national nonfiction bestsellers. Twelve of those have been #1 national bestsellers.


Woodward (Bush at War) recently said that this book has as much new information as any of his 12 previous ones. Indeed, Woodward presents a fact-filled account of Bush's decision to go to war against Saddam Hussein's Iraq in 2003. Already, the book has stirred controversy based on its conclusion that Bush decided to go to war in January 2003 and not two months later, as he claims, and for its recounting of CIA director George Tenet's exclamation that the existence of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in Iraq was a "slam dunk." Woodward is at his best when he shows how foreign-policy issues became the battleground of pro-war cabinet members and the moderate Secretary of State Colin Powell, who despite his misgivings about fighting a war without UN support went from reluctant warrior to war supporter. President Bush is portrayed as unwavering in his belief that war against Saddam Hussein was right, although no WMD have been found, American soldiers continue to die, and Iraq remains an unstable nation. At times the reader can be overwhelmed by an abundance of facts and the author's shifting from one topic to another. However, some notable chapters about intelligence in Iraq are as engrossing as the best espionage thrillers. Woodward has written a memorable narrative of modern presidential decision making that all public libraries must own.-Karl Helicher, Upper Merion Twp. Lib., King of Prussia, PA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Tim Rutten, Los Angeles Times A remarkable book, one that fulfills the too often ephemeral promise of what has come to be called investigative journalism....The American people seldom have been given this clear a window on their government's most sensitive deliberations.
David Cook, The Christian Science Monitor Richly detailed, awesomely sourced...a granular record of the nation's march to war with Iraq, gleaned from interviews, memos, phone records, and PowerPoint presentations.
Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times Engrossing...Woodward uses myriad details to chart the Bush administration's march to war against Iraq. His often harrowing narrative not only illuminates the fateful interplay of personality and policy...but underscores the role that fuzzy intelligence, Pentagon timetables and aggressive ideas about the military and foreign policy had in creating momentum for war.
Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times Instantly essential...By far the most intimate glimpse we have been granted of the Bush White House, and the administration's defining moment.

While researching this book, Woodward (All the President's Men; Bush at War) interviewed more than 75 individuals and spent three and a half hours over the course of two days with George W. Bush himself. The resulting account of the decisions made before and following the start of the Iraq war has raised hackles on both sides of the political spectrum. While many conservatives see it as a smear on the administration, many liberals feel Woodward has handled the situation with kid gloves (a criticism that is only reinforced by the fact that Plan of Attack is at the top of the President's reading list on his Web site). Reading in first person as Woodward, veteran actor and audiobook reader Gaines does a superb job of conveying this important information in a mature yet charged manner. His voice is smooth and measured, and his timing, modulation and emphasis are perfectly suited to both the material and to Woodward's narrative voice. Because it is done so well, Gaines's delivery becomes transparent-a window through which we can view Woodward's text without distraction. Simultaneous release with the S&S hardcover. (Apr.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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