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16 Reviews
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended
I found War Reporting for Cowards to be an excellent read. It is clearly written, informative and funny. I especially suggest this book to someone with an interest in combat journalism.
It is not so much about the war, but about the author's reaction to being on the frontlines. That is why I liked this book so much. Being in the British armed forces, his story...
Published on 7 July 2005

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3.0 out of 5 stars Pretty bad, but maybe as good as it gets
This book has a lot of substance, but is too heavy on confessions of personal foolishness. It has gripping eyewitness accounts of the 9/11 attacks, the Anthrax bio-terror scare, and the US invasion of Iraq. But most of the book is a self-depreciating account of the author's life to date. The war reporting part only starts with chapter 12, and the invasion starts on page...
Published on 29 Mar 2008 by Brian Griffith


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4.0 out of 5 stars Great Fun, 1 July 2011
This review is from: War Reporting for Cowards: Between Iraq and a Hard Place (Paperback)
Toby Young may have been the originator of Loser lit. Chris Ayres however is the master of it. Very entertaining.
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4.0 out of 5 stars grows on you ...., 5 May 2009
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Chris Miller (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: War Reporting for Cowards: Between Iraq and a Hard Place (Paperback)
I'm very glad I kept at this book - I really didn't like the way it began in the war zone, I thought it would stay there and simply get repetitive. But going back to where chris ayres' career began was just great. It was a fascinating insight into journalism and the madness of working in America. then when it got back to the war zone you are really rooting for the author. glad I stuck with it!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Pretty bad, but maybe as good as it gets, 29 Mar 2008
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This book has a lot of substance, but is too heavy on confessions of personal foolishness. It has gripping eyewitness accounts of the 9/11 attacks, the Anthrax bio-terror scare, and the US invasion of Iraq. But most of the book is a self-depreciating account of the author's life to date. The war reporting part only starts with chapter 12, and the invasion starts on page 206.

Throughout the book, Ayres remains basically non-critical of everything but himself. Concerning the Iraq War, about as close as he gets to giving personal opinions is the following:

"How was I supposed to feel at this point? Glad that Saddam was going to get his comeuppance and excited by the professional challenge ahead? Or should I have felt moral outrage at the imperial violence about to be visited on Iraq, and pround of my role in exposing the horror of twenty-first-century warfare?
To be honest, I didn't feel any of those things.
All I felt was an overwhelming concern about my personal safety. And, of course, a tug of guilt over my own selfishness.
To my right, a man was smiling at me. I recognized him as a reporter for National Public Radio. 'Hey," he stage-whispered. "Ever get the feeling we're cheerleaders on the team bus?" He continued smiling.
I nodded and continued sipping the dregs of my cappuccino."

But then, maybe embedded war reporting doesn't get much better than this anyway.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Easy Read, 14 April 2007
This review is from: War Reporting for Cowards: Between Iraq and a Hard Place (Paperback)
I got this expecting to read a fast-paced insight into war reporting at the frontline in Iraq, thus giving reason for the author to be the self-confessed coward that he apparently is. This, however, was not the case with the author not even getting to Kuwait let alone Iraq until more than halfway through the book. However, while I was not provided with the adrenalin fuelled story I expected, I still found it to be an easy autobiographical read of the authors progress from student to reporter, and the horrors of 911, to embedded war reporter in Iraq.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed War Reporting for Cowards, 6 July 2005
Hello,
I found War Reporting for Cowards to be an excellent read. It is clearly written, informative and funny. I especially suggest this book to someone with an interest in combat journalism.
It is not so much about the war, but about the author's reaction to being on the frontlines. That is why I liked this book so much.
Being in the British armed forces, his story struck a cord with me. However I can't imagine anyone not enjoying this read.
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Crass with a few interesting insights, 25 Aug 2006
This review is from: War Reporting for Cowards: Between Iraq and a Hard Place (Paperback)
Truly unbelievable that anyone could be so naive and ill-prepared for entering a combat zone or that The Times could rely so heavily on such an inexperienced journalist for its reporting requirements. It did provide a rather surprising insight into the world of "view and lift" journalism generally, but I felt so little empathy with the whining Ayres about 9/11 and Iraq it was difficult to truly enjoy this book, so I guess he achieved his objective. The coverage of other races/places seemed largely superficial and it did seem to diminish in some way the experience of other embedded journalists, but it was an easy read and offered a few interesting insights. Any serious insights are still better gleaned from the likes of John Simpson and Fergal Keane.
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War Reporting for Cowards: Between Iraq and a Hard Place
War Reporting for Cowards: Between Iraq and a Hard Place by Chris Ayres (Paperback - 5 Jun 2006)
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