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Darryl CherneyToday there are few progressive heroes left. But even the ones who have died must be killed again by literary assassins like Kate Coleman.
—Darryl Cherney, Earth First! colleague of Judi Bari
Posted October 17, 2008
Posted October 19, 2005
Kate Coleman deftly introduces the reader to the fictional life of Judi Bari. Bari was a woman who sought fame and fortune posturing as an environmental activist in the late 80's and early 1990's in northern California. Coleman's brilliant expose shows Bari as a hypocrite of the worst sort. This book is a shockerWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 18, 2005
Kate Coleman weaves an engrossing tale - a story of a 1990 car bombing in Oakland, California which the victim, Judi Bari, sought to portray as a plot by the government and timber interests to eliminate Bari as an environmental activist. Coleman's wonderfully sourced reseach leads the reader to consider the possibilities that Bari is far more likely to have been the victim of domestic violence at the hands of an ex-husband rather than as a target of the FBI. The author shows Bari as a sometimes brilliant strategist who at the same time compartmentalized her own personal life and played off those who surrounded her against one another.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 3, 2005
Kate Coleman is to be commended for examining the true story of Judi Bari, a shameless self promoter who posed as a 'nonviolent activist' while plotting murder. Coleman goes into the complex world of Bari who sought fame, power, and personal fortune to the exclusion of any lasting or meaningful environmental legacy.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 1, 2005
I read with great interest Kate Coleman's recent book on Judi Bari. The book makes a compelling case for reopening the investigation of the bombing that crippled Bari as well as offers a sympathetic view of the complex and legendary icon that was to become a vicarious diva for many activists. As a person who knew both Bari and especially her former husband, Mike Sweeney, Coleman's book offers insight into both Bari's followers as well as her personal life. The book also poses many questions regarding the role of Bari's former husband, Mike Sweeney,in the bombing of Bari's vehicle that left the radical diva disabled. For those who wish to compare and contrast interpretations of history and political points of view in the interest of good critical thinking; this book is a must. Dr. Danny Weil, ESQ. The Critical Thinking InstituteWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 24, 2005
I've been interested in Earth First! for a long time, so I got this book right away. I was immediately struck by some of the extreme statements and allegations about Judi Bari that I'd never seen before, so I did some fact-checking. It seems like most of the book is just made-up instead of being factual. Example: the author's claim that Bari turned her back on forestry activism in favor of working on her FBI lawsuit and playing the role of martyr. All of us on the North Coast remember Bari's leadership of the huge Save the Headwaters Campaign, which continued until she died of cancer. And the whole rest of the book is like that. It's fiction that uses real peoples' names.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 29, 2005
Kate Coleman's 'Secret Wars of Judi Bari: A Car Bomb, the Fight for the Redwoods, and the End of Earth First' claims to be a biography, but is so fraught with errors from the title to the final paragraph that it should not even be classified as nonfiction. As Co-Coordinator of the Mendocino Environmental Center, I worked with Judi Bari for ten years, and can personally attest to many of the errors. Ms. Coleman did not interview me; she did not interview members of Judi Bari's family, nor many of her closest associates. Nor, apparently, did Ms. Coleman do any fact checking. Even if Ms. Coleman did not want to interview those closest to Judi Bari, many of the errors could have been avoided by conducting Lexus / Nexus searches or Google searches. Not only are there many documentable errors, the whole tone of the book is derivisive and mean-spirited. Judi Bari's legacy lives on despite the car-bomb attempt on her life, despite losing her battle with the cancer that took her from us far too early - and her legacy will live on despite Kate Coleman's (bad) fictionalized account of her life.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.