Re: DREAMLAND: The Secret History of Area 51

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Message posted by Peter Merlin (Member since 11/13/2003) on September 20, 2023 at 16:56:54 PST:

I hope you enjoy reading my book as much as I enjoyed writing it. This is indeed a mighty tome. I call it "the Monolith" because it stands upright on its own.

I made some comments a while back, but many of them bear repeating.

Schiffer bent over backward to keep the price within the realm of affordability, and for that I am truly grateful.

DREAMLAND: The Secret History of Area 51 is the first ever scholarly history of the legendary flight test facility at Groom Lake, Nevada.
My book is unlike any previous volume covering this subject matter. It is based on more than 30 years of in-depth research including thousands of pages of declassified government documents and dozens of interviews with people who actually worked there. The narrative is presented in highly readable prose, but with same academic rigor I applied when writing peer-reviewed research papers and books for NASA and the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics.

This is a straightforward history. You won’t find any wild speculation or conspiracy theories. No breathless melodrama. You will find approximately 285,000 words and more than 700 photos and illustrations. Readers will find the writing lean and the content well organized and contextualized. This book should be of interest to anyone with a casual interest in Area 51, as well as to hardcore aviation enthusiasts and scholars of military history.

It must be distinctly understood that I used only UNCLASSIFIED source material. Again, let me make that perfectly clear: Only UNCLASSIFIED. This included declassified documents as well as material that was never classified to begin with. That’s all I had to work with, which suited me just fine. Throughout the entire narrative, I have carefully documented my sources for each chapter. They can be found in the End Notes section at the back of the book.

Fun fact: I have hidden a number of “Easter eggs” in the source notes. It’s kind of like those extra scenes that show up at the end of a movie after the credits roll.

No matter what you already know about the subject matter, I challenged myself to find new stories to tell, as well as new perspectives on old stories. In some instances, I simply added as many new details as possible to tell a more complete narrative than has been done previously. Wherever possible, I also corrected erroneous data that have long been accepted as gospel.

If I could have done so, I would have happily left flying saucers and Bob Lazar out of the narrative altogether. That wasn't possible. Those subjects are addressed appropriately within the context of Groom Lake history. Attentive readers will find that I couldn't resist playing with and subverting as many UFO tropes as possible.

I hope this book will be a fitting tribute to the many people who labored in silence and obscurity to keep our nation safe.

In Reply to: DREAMLAND: The Secret History of Area 51 posted by z.z.zzyzx on September 20, 2023 at 16:01:17 PST:


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