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Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  133 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Inspired perhaps by this summer's blockbuster film adaptation of Carl Sagan's Contact, a handful of nonfiction works have been reissued, all of which explore the possibility that we are not alone. C.D.B. Bryan's Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind: A Reporter's Notebook on Alien Abduction, UFOs, and the Conference at M.I.T.--an engrossing work written for those skeptical a ...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published June 1st 1996 by Penguin (first published April 1st 1995)
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Rachel
Ever wondered if the truth really was out there?



I always have. Growing up I always had an interest in UFO sightings, alien abductions and close encounters. My mom witnessed multiple UFO sightings throughout her life and so have I; most recently I saw one while driving back to her house in the New Mexican desert just a couple of years ago. Now if what I saw was actually extraterrestrial is up for debate, but it was definitely an unidentified object!

So while I always had an interest in these topi
...more
Todd N
Nov 15, 2007 Todd N rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I first read this book in the late 90s, and it had a strong effect on me. First of all, the descriptions of abductions, especially the ones under hypnosis, scared the crap out of me. (Sleeping with the lights on scared.) But mainly I was struck by the serious tone covering a topic that most people would dismiss with a snicker.

I learned on Wikipedia that CDB Bryan was John O'Hara's stepson, which helps account for why he is such a good writer. And I learned from his NYTimes obit that his bio fath
...more
TrumanCoyote
Mar 26, 2013 TrumanCoyote rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jeepers--a whopping great read! Liked his tone of open-minded skepticism throughout. Boylan was a pud--but everybody else was pretty cool; actually the only real dinks were the scientist types with their bloated pious self-important nonsense--like the guy taking a couple pages to "explain" the Old Hag phenomenon. Also found it interesting (as a sidelight) how many different things can go wrong with pregnancy; like the bunch-of-grapes thing and all that. (I never knew.) Also like the humorous tou ...more
Erik Graff
Feb 11, 2010 Erik Graff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ufologists
Recommended to Erik by: Michael Miley
Shelves: sciences
Michael Miley mailed me the telephone-book-sized, spiral-bound proceedings of the alien abduction conference held at MIT in 1992. I read it at the time, then, when he told me about Bryan's book about the conference, I picked it up and read it as well. All-in-all it is a fair bit of reportage, going beyond the conference itself to include matter obtained from interviewing some of the principals. Bryan does not subscribe to the aliens-from-spacecraft hypothesis, but he does take the abduction phen ...more
Brian Ridge
Started off strong but this book really dragged at the end. Way too many accounts of hypnotherapy sessions. Still, a good resource for those interested in alien abductions.
Eric Simpson
Jul 31, 2016 Eric Simpson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Caveat: What follows is the review of a book that I originally read in 1998 and reviewed in July, 2001. My thoughts and review of the book today, I think, would not be the same as they were 15 years ago. However, since I have no intention of re-reading the book to provide an updated review, the following will have to suffice.

The Scenario
You are driving at night, perhaps alone, or maybe with a friend. In the distant sky you see something strange, a light or a series of lights, moving in odd and
...more
Rachel Pieters
This book took me a long time to get through, simply because it was just so packed with information. I enjoyed C.D.B. Bryan's journalistic no-nonsense and analytical style of reporting and interviewing in regards to the subject matter. I enjoyed the attention to detail and the sheer scope of the possibilities of what is being presented. I will be using this book to make several notes for research, so this was an incredibly helpful book as far as information and perspective collecting goes. An ex ...more
Grant
Nov 25, 2008 Grant rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have a weakness for this stuff. This one is written with a refreshing skepticism for a book of this nature, but it focuses too much on uncharacteristically bizarre and incongruous reports when there seem to be far more interesting ones mentioned that go unexplored. There is also a lot of focus on government conspiracy nonsense that is known to be trumped up (Majestic 12, etc.) when the actual abductee experience is a far more interesting phenomenon, whether you believe it represents something ...more
Lesley
Jan 11, 2009 Lesley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very concise. While a bit verbose I found this book to be well researched.
If you are interested empirical evidence on this subject you won't be disappointed.
One is left with little doubt that these abuctions happened and that there is absolutely
nothing we can do about it.
I was left with questions as to commonality. Why were certain people chosen?
A good if lengthy read that will ask more questions than it answers.

TaleofGenji
May 22, 2012 TaleofGenji marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I registered a book at BookCrossing.com!
http://www.BookCrossing.com/journal/11145739
Mario Hernandez
Okay book, not great. Put some new ideas in my mind but nothing real mind blowing. It's a long read and boring most of the time.
Stacey Franklin
Jul 12, 2012 Stacey Franklin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm so tempted to give this a 5! Just because it's SO interesting to me & I've read it so many times. I want to believe! ;) 4.25
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Surprised at the lack of comment /discussion here 1 6 Sep 24, 2008 10:06PM  
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Courtlandt Dixon Barnes Bryan, better known as C. D. B. Bryan, was an American author and journalist.
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