Hostage to Revolution makes an important contribution to the understanding of a timely and significant subject. It deals with the aspect of the final years of Soviet policy most directly relevant to American security, and relevant today as the foundation on which present and future Russian policy is being built.
Blacker shows the integral nature of Soviet internal and external policy, and of Gorbachev's new thinking on security and attempt to reform the economy and transform the society. Remarkably successful in bringing the Cold War to an end, Gorbachev's security policies - and Gorbachev, and even the Soviet Union - ultimately fell victim to the failure of perestroika to bring about the reformation of the Soviet system. It is a fascinating story, told with clear analysis and in a clear language. (Raymond Garthoff, The Brookings Institution)