Breaking News

Martin Fletcher doesn’t claim to be a hero. Yet he didn’t flinch, either. During three decades covering wars, revolutions, and natural disasters, Fletcher worked his way from news agency cameraman to top network correspondent, facing down his own fears while facing up to mass killers, warlords, and murderers. With humor and elegance, Fletcher describes his growth from clueless adventurer to grizzled veteran of the world’s battlefields. His working philosophy of “Get in, get close, get out, get a drink,” put him repeatedly in harm’s way, but he never lost sight of why he did it. In a world obsessed with celebrities, leaders, and wealth, Fletcher took a different route: he focused on those left behind, those paying the price. He answers the question: Why should we care?             These extraordinary, real-life adventure stories each examine different dilemmas facing a foreign correspondent. Can you eat the food of a warlord, who stole it from the starving? Do you listen politely to a terrorist threatening to blow up your children? Do you ask the tough questions of a Khmer Rouge killer, knowing he is your only ticket out of the Cambodian jungle? And above all, how do you stay sane faced with so much pain?

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By Jack (The United States) · ★★★★☆ · February 03, 2009
There is no substitute for eyewitness accounts in history. Before Anderson Cooper gained popularity for "seeing the event for yourself," Martin Fletcher set the industry standard in the 1970s and 1980s for all field journalists, especially war correspondents. The encounters which Fletcher recount... ...more
By Kim (Winston Salem, NC) · ★★★★☆ · October 04, 2014
Martin Fletcher, known best as a TV reporter for NBC, has recent several books, including Breaking News about his work as a foreign correspondent. He started as a cameraman for NBC News in 1977 and 32 years later has retired. “He has won almost every award in TV journalism, including the du Pont,... ...more
By Tammam (Breda, 06, Netherlands) · ★★★★☆ · January 05, 2015
What I like best about Breaking News is Martin Fletcher's honesty. He scarcely tries to assume the role of a hero that set off to save the world, au contraire, he describes his motivations, selfishness, biases, and even opportunism; non of which reduces the fact that he was extremely lucky being... ...more
By Bill (Arlington, VA) · ★★★★☆ · July 11, 2014
Fletcher is an excellent writer, and he shares many of his interesting experiences in this book. He tackles some complex moral issues for reporters. For example, how appropriate is it to film someone dying of starvation? His stories set in Israel during the Intifidas were especially compelling fo... ...more
By Alper (Chicago, IL) · ★★★☆☆ · April 13, 2008
It seemed to me like what could have been a honest, unpretentious book got ruined by Fletcher's editor pushing him to 'tell the greater story". At every turn Fletcher connects the events he is narrating with the endless moral dilemmas of being a journalist and his family's holocaust history, over... ...more
By Toby (Belmont, CA) · ★★★★☆ · July 27, 2008
'Breaking News...' is a very compelling recollection of the life of a journalist who has covered some of the most important and brutal conflicts of the last quarter century. While it features many stories of how such a newsman actually does his job, the most interesting theme throughout the book... ...more
By Linda (Culloden, WV) · ★★★★☆ · April 11, 2008
This was an interesting read from one of broadcast journalism's veteran reporters. His insight into the life of a international war correspondent, jetting around the world to cover the latest conflict is part adventure story, part soul searching and part justification for why he does the things h... ...more
By Karen (The United States) · ★★★☆☆ · April 12, 2008
yet another journalist's memoir. but fletcher's tales of life as a young journalist in southern africa in the early 70s and his experiences in cyprus even out an account that is otherwise bogged down with reportage from more familiar - and overly chronicled - fronts. ...more
By Paul (The United States) · ★★★☆☆ · January 21, 2009
Memoir of NBC senior correspondent in Tel Aviv. His career as a war correspondent spans from Rhodesia and South Africa in the 70’s, to Israel, Somalia, Kosovo, and back Israel. He tries to understand the morality of his job, and why he does it. ...more
By Susan (Arlington, VA) · ★★★★☆ · May 01, 2008
I found it really thought provoking just about war in general. It was fascinating seeing behind the scenes of newscasts. ...more