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This book blew me away. Crumpton is a skilled writer, which is a cherished talent amongst officers in the CIA who must often explain complex situations and actors through the medium of written report. The story, of both Crumpton's service and of the overarching intelligence/foreign security policy, is revealing and instrumental in demonstrating that the intelligence service requires much more than spycraft. It requires a good deal of open mindedness, cultural acceptance, and broad, inclusive perspective. A must read for any looking to someday work for the State Department or CIA.
This was an extremely well written book by an expert in the field. I would consider it a must if you are interested in the subject matter, especially the development of the US drone program.
I am a Clinical Medical Hypnotherapist with specialities in Auto Immune, PTSD, ADHD, Cancer, and Autism. I focus on very difficult cases.
The story. The narrator spoked as if you and he were in a living room or a den simply having a wonderful conversation.
The narrator was the main character and the storyline really doesn't use other characters as anything other than additional decoration to the story line.
The book is almost presented as a debriefing transcript.
I liked the entire story and the "factual way it was presented." If however, I was not truly interested in the subject, I would never have finished it. Most of the narration is presented in a monotone and the other characters are very flat. Mr. Colacci's performance would be greatly enhanced if he performed the story with his voice rather than presenting it in a "give me the facts, just the facts."
Life in the shadows
Made even better as I watched Zero Dark Thirty about halfway through the listening of this book. I am fascinated by the events that unfolded after 9/11 and anything in the spy world. I really enjoyed it even if it isn't the greatest story or narration ever. If you're not a spy nut, you may not enjoy it, but if you are, it's one you will like.
the attitude is one of false innocence, of surprise at worldly things
the first chapters
I have only started listening, so this review may be unfair. However, the book is very slow and wordy. It makes me wonder if it was ghostwritten. It is flat and devoid of texture. And I have to say that the author's characterization of the Valerie Plame outing is tendentious and political. He ascribes her unveiling as a CIA agent as due to people on George W Bush's staff. This is only true if you take the view that everybody in the Executive Branch is "on Bush's staff." It is well-known that Plame's unveiling was due to a comment by Richard Armitage at the State Department and that the CIA did not wave off the columnist when it was queried by him. The characterization of the unveiling as coming from Bush's staff and Libby's conviction for perjury as a confirmation of this is simply political cant. And this interpretation is coming from an INTELLIGENCE officer who presumably deals in nuance. It destroyed the believability of the book for me.
Great book by Hank Crumpton with well described personal history. For those interested in the intelligence community, this book offers what seems to be an honest look into the CIA from the prism of a career clandestine service officer.
No, What else would he know?
Great reading. Good emphasis and not too fast.
It is what one would expect a CIA guy to say and the same kind of info you hear on CNN and the rest of the corporate owned news folks.
I would definitely recommend this to the listener who wants to learn about the CIA.
Henry Crumpton's knowledge from his experiences within the CIA were the most compelling
This isn't applicable.
It answers some questions about his profession.
Added a litlle more emotion.
I recommend this book to all adults.