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For weeks after reading Most Dangerous, I found myself at casual lunches with friends, bringing up the Vietnam War.
Steve Sheinkin’s Most Dangerous is true history that reads like the best suspense novels.
Sheinkin has made a name for himself as a writer of fast-paced histories for young readers. Tim Manley: When he still worked at the Pentagon, Ellsberg was tasked with finding narratives of vicious assaults by the Viet Cong in South Vietnam in order to help convince the president to begin the sustained bombing of North Vietnam.
When you can turn something into a story, ita€™s more fun to read, easier to remember, and, hopefully, will do a better job of sparking curiosity and discussion. SS: What narrative nonfiction like Most Dangerous can do is really dive into a story and spend a lot of time exploring it. SS: I really enjoyed talking with Daniel Ellsberg, as well as with his wife Patricia Ellsberg, who is also a major figure in the story. The reaction to Ellsberg was probably a bit more hostile, maybe because of how divisive the Vietnam War was. Tim Manley is the writer and illustrator of Alice in Tumblr-land: And Other Fairy Tales for a New Generation, and the co-writer of The 10 Letters Project.


Daniel Ellsberg works as a government analyst in the Pentagon and abroad during the Vietnam War. Contrary to textbooks and tests which depict history as a series of names and dates to be memorized, Sheinkin shows how history is actually a story that we are very much playing out the consequences of today. But really, you’re right, stories are incredibly powerful, and I definitely thought about that while figuring about how to put this book together. The conversations didn’t change my views, but did provide some great material for enriching the story. Many think of Ellsberga€™s actions as courageous and even heroic today, but back then he got death threats and was called a second Benedict Arnold.
His one-person show, Feelings, debuted this year at the New York International Fringe Festival. My friend look at me with a worried brow as I go on to recount the whole story as though it’s the latest and juiciest gossip.
The documents he has access to include what became known as The Pentagon Papers, a 7,000-page collection which details the horrifying secrets behind the US’s involvement in Vietnam from 1945 to 1967.
Actually, the reaction to Ellsberg was probably a bit more hostile, maybe because of how divisive the Vietnam War was.


Everyone has a point of view, and I don’t try to hide mine, but I try to present the story accurately, and in such a way that readers can take different views on who is right and wrong.
When you can turn something into a story, it’s more fun to read, easier to remember, and, hopefully, will do a better job of sparking curiosity and discussion.
I love the image of one man, totally unimportant, walking into this massive center of powera€”what could he possibly do to get noticed, let alone to change the course of history? Many think of Ellsberg’s actions as courageous and even heroic today, but back then he got death threats and was called a second Benedict Arnold. But of course, details of what it was like to walk into a building on a particular day are not the kinds of things history books tend to record.



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