Monday, August 10, 2020

The 37th Parallel

The 37th Parallel: The Secret Truth Behind America's UFO HighwayThe 37th Parallel: The Secret Truth Behind America's UFO Highway by Ben Mezrich
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Chuck Zukowski is obsessed with UFO sightings. This is his story.

Despite the pandemic, we flew my sister-in-law and brother-in-law into town for Miles' first birthday. Before they left town, Marc pushed this on me. My in-laws are much more into UFOs than I am but I resolved to give this a read.

I was huge into UFOs as a kid but have gotten increasingly skeptical over the years. As a result, I approached this as a work of fiction but reserved the right to change my mind later.

This reminded me of James Renner's True Crime Addict more than anything else. It was written in an engaging style and felt more like fiction than a factual work.

The 37th Parallel chronicles Chuck Zukowski sojourn into the world of UFOs, starting with cattle mutilations and eventually leading to a dig at one of the Roswell crash sites and beyond.

I'm not going to debate the existence of UFOs here. I'm sure there's life elsewhere but the thing about space is that it's quite big. Anyway, this book can be interpreted in two ways: either it's a very engaging piece of fiction with a shitty ending or an account of one man's wild goose chase.

If you take it as a work of fiction, this is some gripping stuff, although I found the time jumps annoying. If you take it as fact, Chuck's wife should have divorced his ass decades ago. Yeah, I get the pursuit of truth and I understand his obsession at times but was it really worth all the sacrifices along the way?

At the end, I guess I'll say I was very entertained by this and possibly a little convinced Chuck isn't wasting his time. Four out of five little green men.

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