Operation Blue Light by Philip Chabot with Laurie Anne Blanchard
When I was done eating, he gave me some gum. He and I both took two sticks.
"Now don't throw away those wrappers," he said. "Here is what you do. Fold them this way. Then this way. One end fits into the other." It made one link. "Then do that again with the next wrapper. And you'll have a chain. Then, if you get one that is a yard long, you show it to your doctor. You'll get to stay in here for another six months."
What led you to pick up this book? I love reading anything at all about psychics -- their personal accounts of psychic experiences, in particular, but I also like paranormal fiction with psychic heroes or heroines.
Describe the book without giving anything away. Operation Blue Light is one man's account of his psychic experiences in the 1960s, during a time when the MKULTRA experiments took place (think Conspiracy Theory).
Okay, that's not enough info. Can you tell us more? Well, since you asked . . . okay. Philip Chabot (not the author's real name) begins the book with a gripping account of his arrival at a hotel after a lengthy cross-country drive. Exhausted, he takes a shower and makes a phone call, sleeps and then escapes past 4 rifle-wielding men in suits. What has happened? In order to find out, we must backtrack to Philip's high school years and learn about his early psychic experiences, which were followed by a mental breakdown (caused by the stress of college and the way people feared him after he made an accurate prediction) then time in a psychiatric ward. It wasn't till long after his breakdown that Philip's psychic ability resumed.
Oh, dear. I have so much more to say about this book. This is rough. I truly believe that everyone has a 6th sense and some are more "tuned in" than others. Those who read this blog regularly have heard a few of my own stories. In the author's case, his experiences were more "telepathic" than "vision-oriented". Sometimes he simply saw events through someone else's eyes, as they occurred. This part I believe. However -- and it's a big however -- what the author describes in this book involves government agents using his telepathic ability. I expected a kidnapping, maybe drugs . . . some sort of testing against his will.
Instead, Philip Chabot's psychic experiences resumed when he was removed from tranquilizers. Truth? I think he had some sort of episode of manic psychosis. What he describes sounds very, very much like the descriptions of two people I know who have been diagnosed as bipolar and experienced extreme episodes of mania. I believe the voices in the author's head were very real to him and his experience is every bit as real to him, to this day. But, my gut says the experience was mental; and, the sheer quantity of different people he claims to have communicated with telepathically was the most convincing factor.
Recommended? Iffy on recommendation. In spite of pedestrian writing and poor editing, the first two-thirds of the book was extremely gripping. I was just dying to know what was going to happen to Philip. Somewhere around that turning point, though (between about pages 180-200), his cross-country journey began. And, I realized it wasn't at all what I expected. There are pages and pages of rambling "psychic" conversation with alleged agents in Russia, Great Britain, the U.S. and China. I struggled to finish the last 75 pages of the book. Add a little kidnapping, some drugs, and it would make a great movie. I loved quotes like that above -- a real blast from the past. Does anyone remember how to make gum wrapper chains? But, the last third was a huge let-down, in my humble opinion.
Cover thoughts: The cover really appeals to me -- the phone with a cord torn from its cradle. And, it fits. The whole story is wrapped around a single phone call.
I think I'm caught up. I've hardly read at all, today, but I hope to amend problem by tomorrow. Now that I've typed up three reviews, I need to hurry up and finish three more, right? That's how it seems to work, lately.
Wait, where did that link to the giveaway go? Relax, it's right here. If you haven't signed up or you don't see anything great, don't worry. I'm pretty sure I've got to dump a few more books on you guys. The library is getting a minor windfall of donations, as well.
And, now, I'm off to bed. Hope everyone is having a glorious weekend!
Bookfool, who believes she is caught up (but we know that sensation never lasts long)