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Customer Reviews for Thomas Nelson Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue

Thomas Nelson Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue

In November 2004, Roy Hallums was working late at his Baghdad office when armed kidnappers broke in and took him away. He spent the next 10 months in a concrete pit, bound and blindfolded. Freed by coalition forces in September 2005, Hallums shares the story of his captivity and rescue---and the faith that sustained him. 256 pages, hardcover from Nelson.
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Customer Reviews for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Review 1 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Honest recounting of unimaginable times

Date:August 5, 2011
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Haelie
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
What would you do if you were kidnapped in a foreign country knowing practically none of their language nor their intentions behind your kidnapping?
Would you - could you survive? Considering torture, unsanitary living conditions, and uncertainty of rescue or release...How long? A few days? Possibly even a few weeks?
How about almost a full year?
Roy Hallums did. As the title of his book alludes, he was even literally Buried Alive, yet his faith in God and his resolve to live and see his family again miraculously carried him through to the time of his unexpected and dramatic rescue.
This book is not one that will have you sitting on the edge of your seat with suspense, nor is it filled to the brim with him expressing his love for and faith in God. However, Mr. Hallums recounts with straight-forward, realistic honesty the tortures and emotions he and his stateside family endured throughout his 311 day captivity. Not just 10 months, to him each of the 311 days was unique and difficult in itself. And throughout his retelling of these days, from both his and his loving family's perspective, the thread of God's love and provision over them is woven. Though the story is in no way beautiful, until his blessed rescue at least, the tapestry of God's plan for his life is to be treasured.
In addition to gaining a better understanding of what goes on in all aspects of kidnapping in foreign lands, I was most touched by the dramatic rescue of Roy Hallums. It brought me to tears to read how our military men risked their lives to go in and save his and anyone else they may find.
"The first rescuer pulled off an American flag patch that was velcroed on the sleeve of his uniform and pressed it into the palm of my hand, which he clasped with a handshake.
'You've been rescued,' he said to me.
I hugged him and thanked him. To this day, I carry that little flag in my pocket wherever I go." (pp. 206-207)
During these times of international struggle in our world, this book would be an interesting, informative, and enlightening read for you. This man's struggle in captivity is not to be taken lightly as there are so many others daily who are enduring very similar circumstances, many without the hope of rescue. Let this book be a guide for how better to pray for those people and their families. It has been that for me.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 2 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:May 4, 2010
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Heather Jones
This is the inspriring story of one man's 311 day imprisonment by Iraqi kidnappers. It also details the trials and frustrations of this family during this time and is a very good read.
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Review 3 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:March 31, 2010
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Gagan Agrawal
Imagine you are going about your business in a secure office building, about to have lunch, and all of a sudden you find yourself surrounded by men who mask and kidnap you! How would you feel this happened in a country where kidnapping was a booming business, where survival and rescue rate for victims were abysmally low?Buried alive is the story of Roy Hallums, who was a representing his company in post war Iraq. He had successfully worked in the Middle East for a number of years. One day he finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time and is kidnapped. For the next 311 days he is subjected to beatings, psychological torture and a confinement that would make most men insane. But Roy prevailed. To date he is the only American Contractor who has been rescued. His story is fascinating and told with great detail. Even though Roy talks about his, and his familys despair, the story keeps a factual tone, thus keeping your interest alive. Roy talks about the observations and thoughts that went through his head while in captivity, yet he does not talk with the anger and prejudice he is entitled to.After his recovery, Hallum was on 60 Minutes with Lesley Stahl. She seemed amazed that he could tell his story without any sign of post-trauma, and was sure he was ready "to crash" at any time, but he never did. That shows the true strength of the man, and it was fascinating to read what kept him going, and hopeful, during his captivity.I must read, I would say. If nothing else, after reading this youll feel better prepared to face adversity and come on top.
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Review 4 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Date:March 7, 2010
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l smith
I have not read a non-fiction book about a kidnapping before, and I was worried that without all the drama and excitement added by the imagination of a fictional author, this book would just be a dull, factual account of life in captivity. However, this book is not nearly as bad as I thought it might be. Within the first few chapters I was drawn into the tale, rooting for the author, Roy Hallums, to get out alive. I was especially glad that Hallums did not try to glamourise his kidnapping, however I think that he did not give himself enough credit for surviving his experience in such good mental condition - he frequently mentions the fact that he is in no way the hero of the story, just the subject of a kidnapping. I think that the series of events described in the book is a little confusing - I think Hallums could have structured the plot a little more clearly, however so long as the reader applies their full attention to the book it is a good read. I would recommend anyone to read this book as it raises awareness of the problems of war, as well as showing the reality of a captive's fears and hopes. This book is published by Thomas Nelson, and I received a copy free from them in exchange for posting this review. I am under no obligation to make this review positive / negative.
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Review 5 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 2, 2010
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bob garbett
Buried AliveKidnapped. Bound and blindfolded. Pistol whipped and beaten. Thus begins the 311 day ordeal of Roy Hallums, an American contractor kidnapped and held for ransom in Iraq.Hallums takes us (sometimes graphically) through the everyday life of being held captive by a gang of thugs in war torn Iraq. From the mundane, such as the daily diet, to the harrowing he describes the beatings which were given at times for punishment, at other times for the amusement of the guards and often for no apparent reason. Hallums includes some lighthearted moments such as the comical behavior of the captors as they made his proof of life video, with one of them acting as the director.He also shares the perspective of his family as they dealt with the lack of information, bureaucratic stalemates and terror of just not knowing whether their loved one was still alive. Understandably, the experience was horribly difficult on them as well.Hallums was finally rescued however, and we get the details (as much as allowed) of how that actually came about and how the plan was executed. For me, this book was a page turner and I enjoyed it immensely. I post these reviews as a member of Thomas Nelsons Book Review Blogger Program  (www.booksneeze.com)
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Review 6 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Date:February 27, 2010
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A Fulwood
Buried Alive by Roy Hallums and published by Thomas Nelson Publishers is the account of the kidnapping of 56 year old Roy who lived and worked in Bagdad. This book is a first hand account of 311 days of captivity.First let me make it clear that I am glad Roy Hallums made it back home to his family and friends. I cant imagine even after having read the book what it was like for him day after day. However I found the book itself lacking. It lacked emotions and was fairly robotic in nature when it came to Mr. Hallums trying to explain what he felt and endured. There was sense that he was holding out on the reader. Maybe it was because the experience itself was so horrible that his mind will only allow him to share the surface emotions of his captivity. I wanted to be inspired by Mr. Hallums experience I was only saddened by his choice to live in an unsafe country. Bagdad is not exactly a tourist haunt. As Americans we must consider our choices especially when they put our soldiers at risk.There were some elements in the book I didnt enjoy at all. There was more smoke than fire.The Hallums family account gave me more understanding on exactly what a family has to endure in this situation. They opened their hearts for this book and I dont take that lightly. I just wish Mr. Hallums would have let us in, but I think I understand why maybe he just couldnt. I am glad he is back on American soil.Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255
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Review 7 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:February 14, 2010
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Allen James
Very few of us can imagine being kidnapped. We watch movies that portray it. We might even think about a worst-case scenario. In our reality-driven media world, our attention turns to the extreme. Maybe that is why Buried Alive by Roy Hallums is so captivating. His story captivates you from the very first page. Recounting his experience of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, Roy Hallums recounts his horrific experienced of being kidnapped by terrorists in real-time fashion.I could not put the book down. Literally, I finished it within hours. I was overwhelmed at times by Hallums perseverance, boldness, hope, and survival skills. I continually asked myself, If I were in this situation, could I persevere? From a very humble perspective, Hallums provides readers with amazing clarity of every moment of his nearly one-year captivity.This book is a 5 out of 5. If you are searching for your next auto-biographical book to read, this is it!
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Review 8 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:February 11, 2010
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Nathan
This is the captivating story of retired Navy Vet. Roy Hallums Harrowing capture and rescue from terrorists. Throughout, the book offers fascinating insight to the physical, psychological, and spiritual toll the kidnapping had on him, as well as the massive rescue operation that was put into place by the United States military and Government. For my complete review, go to http://divingdeepernow.blogspot.com/2010/02/burried-alive.html
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Review 9 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:February 7, 2010
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Robin Porter
Can you imagine yourself being hogtied, forced to wear a ski-mask backwards so you can not see anything, being confined to living quarters so small you can't stand up even if you wanted to, and not being fed or given water daily? Not to mention the many beatings you would have to endure if you were kidnapped by a group of Iraqis?"Buried Alive" by Roy Hallums is the true story of Roy's 311 days of being held captive by Iraqis. Once I started reading this book I did not want to put it down! Roy gives vivid details of his horrifying kidnapping and describes what each day was like until his amazing rescue by the US Army Special Forces! Roy's faith and the faith of his family helped him get through this unbelievable ordeal. This is a great book for anyone to read and I highly recommend you get a copy and read it!Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 : Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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Review 10 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:February 5, 2010
Lesley Stahl, 60 Minutes Correspondent, called this book "...vivid, absorbing and chilling." She was correct. The descriptions are vivid, the story is absorbing and the fact it is true is chilling. Roy Hallums was a contractor working in Iraq who was taken hostage and held captive for 311 days by a Sunni terrorist cell. My caveat before I continue is that I did enjoy reading the book and found it difficult to put down. It was interesting to me that Hallums could find humor in some of the events that took place during his captivity. Without the humor in this book, it would have been a very difficult read. I almost felt bad for laughing at some of the events he described.Having said that, I was disappointed he did not explain his faith with the exception of mentioning praying that God would get him out and asking God to let it rain if he was going to make it out alive. There was also a mention of a prayer vigil held by his family and friends. I am certain that Hallums attributes his rescue to answered prayer just as much as the military men and women who participated in his rescue.I found this book to be worth reading. There are still contractors and others being held hostage who have never been found. The Hallums family has a good ending, but that is not always the case. We need to pray for those still missing and their families.Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their Book Review Blogger program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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Review 11 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:February 3, 2010
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Marissa
Buried Alive by Roy Hallums is the story of Roy's kidnapping in Iraq and captivity for almost one year. It's an amazing story! Mr. Hallums recounts in amazing detail how he was kidnapped, where he was taken, how he was treated, how long he was held hostage, and his rescue by American soldiers. His story is captivating and inspirational. I couldn't put it down!This was a great book. As Mr. Hallums points out, he is the only, or one of the few, American contractors to have been held hostage and rescued. It was incredible that he was ever located, and a number of things had to come together for that to happen. I especially enjoyed reading about his captors and their stupidity (during a proof of life video, they showed him their weapons were not even loaded!) The book does not go into detail about his faith in God and is only mentioned one time. In fact, he mentions wanting a cigar and Jack Daniels many more times. I was disappointed in that part of the book. It is obvious that God kept him alive during that time, but he does not acknowledge it in the book. It is a good book to read though, and I would recommend it!Disclosure: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program.
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Review 12 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Date:February 1, 2010
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aimergency
How scary would it be to be kidnapped. The thought is just terrifying honestly. I am not sure I would even know what to do or what to think but to live through it so amazing.So this is a true story of a kidnapping and eventual rescueI won't give much away but it sure is amazing the abduction in itself woah man and what a crazy amazing thing that he was able to come out of it alive. With all the beatings gosh it was a really good book I would recommend it. Not only was it suspenseful but so true gosh crazy.
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Review 13 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:January 28, 2010
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caffeineepiphanies
Held captive for 311 days; blindfolded; bound by the wrists and ankles, and fed like a dog.Not to mention, he was nearly starved, beaten, frequently thrown into the trunk of a car like a piece of luggage, forced to listen to blaring-recorded-Arabic-rants while always having to be blinded and barefoot.Buried Alive is the sobering story of the abduction and captivity of Roy Hallums who worked as a contractor in Baghdad in 2004. His story is an intense and compelling one of survival at gunpoint.Its painful to read how any human (the Iraqi terrorist cell in this case) can treat others like caged animals. Frankly, animals here in the U.S. are far better off than those who shared the crawlspace and filth that Roy Hallums describes.There were also moments of pure absurdity such as when his captors would say (and Im paraphrasing) Dont worry. Were your friends. Now, read this statement into the camera or well shoot you in the head.Buried Alive is an engaging, sad, hopeful, well-written, true-life tale showing the horror of terrorism, kidnapping, and captivity.Reviewed by Mary C. M PhillipsCaffeine Epiphanies
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Review 14 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:January 17, 2010
Buried Alive by Roy Hallums is a compelling book. It is the true story of a 56-year-old man who was working for a company in Iraq, supplying food for the American army in Baghdad. He and his coworkers were used to carrying AK-47's at work, but on the day he was kidnapped, his guns were not within reach. He never learned the name of the group that held him hostage for a $12 million price tage until after his escape, but he just prayed he wouldn't be beheaded like other hostages before him. Even though this book is graphic in its details of captivity, Roy's moments of humor throughout his story keep you engaged. The thing that amazed me about his story was his retention of details--time and days--throughout his ordeal! It was also surprising that his spirit wasn't broken in spite of his torture. I found myself cheering him on as he survived each trial and excited for his rescue by Second Army Special Forces in Rambo-type style. As Roy was being held hostage, his family was doing everything within their power at home for his release. They knew the American government wouldn't give in to the demands of the hostages, but they made television appearances to keep his situation in front of the public. I was amazed by their treatment of our own FBI. At times, I wondered whether they were considered the enemy by our own government.You need to read this book. You'll want to acquaint yourself with the thinking and workings of extremists and terrorists. And you'll learn a lot from Roy in how to handle intense situations.
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Review 15 for Buried Alive: The True Story of Kidnapping, Captivity, and a Dramatic Rescue
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Date:January 16, 2010
As a veteran myself, I was interested in reading this book. I anticipated a fascinating story of survival and rescue. In order to survive 311 days as a hostage in Iraq, Roy had to stay calm and endure whatever his captures did or did not do to him. His ex-wife says that his is patient and laid back. I think that describes the flow of the book...laid back. It was neither exciting nor was it depressing. It was just easy going throughout. I expected more drama and action in the story, but it was not that kind of story. The book details Roy's ordeal as best as he can remember. It was interesting but not necessarily exciting. As far as the Christian content, I was disappointed. The front flap of the book states "Hallum's story is tempered by his faith." However, there is only one acknowledgement of God throughout his entire 311 days of captivity. I would have thought his faith would play a bigger role in his survival. I guess I was wrong.*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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