- Author Antonio J. Méndez
I wasn’t sure whether to read the book or see the film for this first, but as the book came afterwards, I wasn’t worried when we watched the film before I got round to reading. It turns out that the author, intelligence officer extraordinaire, didn’t really want to tell the story at all but the CIA declassified the mission as part of some anniversary celebrations. A film was made, and then this book followed, to tell how it really happened.
I enjoyed reading the book - a bit of a slow start but it gradually got more and more interesting as it became less about politics and more about logistics. Seeing how the mission fit into the general CIA protocol and how it related and compared to other exfiltrations was interesting. I did think it showed the film up as being too Hollywood, as they didn’t have any of the problems they had in the movie - they were clearly added in to make it more exciting.
Still, it was good to read the real account of what happened, and it’s a story very well told whilst keeping the secrets that need to remain.