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Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA Audiobook

Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA

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Publisher's Summary

A team of intelligence agents tries to prevent an impending terrorist attack, but is thwarted by bureaucratic hurdles in this darkly humorous debut by former CIA agent Susan Hasler.

Maddie James and her colleagues are terrorism experts working in a crumbling intelligence agency. They are certain another big terrorist attack is coming, but in a post-9/11 election year, the administration is stressing its victories in the War on Terror, and few want to hear the team's warnings.

Maddie is given a team of five analysts to focus on the impending threat. The crew labors through bureaucratic obstacles, personal problems, and a blossoming romance between its senior members, Doc and Fran. They come heartbreakingly close to stopping the attack, but fail to predict a surprising twist in the terrorists’ plot.

In the wake of tragedy, the administration pins blame on Iran, despite a lack of evidence—so Maddie and her team try to investigate. With dark humor and a razor-sharp tone, they fight back against office politics, government cover-ups, and blackmail in order to set the record straight. A keenly crafted debut that could only be written by an ex-CIA agent, Intelligence will please fans of Wag the Dog and Primary Colors.

The excellent cast of narrators includes Joe Barrett, Dina Perlman, Suzanne Toren, Marc Vietor, Peter Ganim, Elisabeth Rodgers, L J Ganser, Caitlin Davies, Rachel Butera, Ken Kilban, Terry Donnolly, Eileen Stevens, Gabra Zackman, Kevin Pariseau, Joshua Swanson, Gayle Hendrix, Anthony Salerno, and Bryan Kennedy.

BONUS AUDIO: Includes an introduction written and read by author Susan Hasler.

©2010 Susan Hasler (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A biting satire of the agency [Hasler] once called home….It’s a very funny book about a deeply unfunny slice of recent history. Read it and weep – but you’ll be laughing, too." (The Washington Post)

"Often laugh-out-loud funny, Intelligence even manages to squeeze in a genuinely sweet romance. Susan Hasler does for the folks at the CIA what Joseph Wambaugh accomplishes with cops: she gives them human dimension. Sometimes sad, sometimes stupid, sometimes scary and at other times heroic, Hasler’s characters always seem achingly real." (January magazine, Best Crime Fiction of 2010)

"There have been many books written about the CIA, some of them by ex-agents of the clandestine organization. But none of them have been anything like Susan Hasler’s Intelligence. For one thing, it’s refreshing to get a female point of view. For another, Hasler’s mordant wit makes reading this novel an unalloyed delight. Not since Catch-22 has a novel with such trenchantly mordant wit illuminated the inherent insanity of institutionalized war. Intelligence is funny, sad, and frightening. It’s a book to keep you up at night, one you won’t soon forget." (Eric Van Lustbader)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (464 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
3.6 (255 )
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Story
3.9 (245 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Luke Albany, NY, United States 04-18-13
    Luke Albany, NY, United States 04-18-13 Member Since 2011

    In sales and on the road a lot. Love SciFi, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, and the occasional Non-Fiction. Funny. Opinionated.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Seriously? You People LIKED This????"
    What disappointed you about Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA?

    Put simply? It sucked. Hard. Like a million-dollar space-age vacuum. Suuuuuucked. I like thrillers; this isn't thrilling. Spy novels? Sure. This is not a spy novel. This is a former employee bitching about her former employer. If I wanted that I doubt that I would be buying an audio book which implies spy-stuff. False advertising.


    What was most disappointing about Susan Hasler’s story?

    Uhm, there was no story. The main character was worthless and has a miserable life and hates her job. The end.


    Would you be willing to try another one of the narrators’s performances?

    Possibly, the narration wasn't terrible itself. It's just hard to separate the performer from the material.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Absolutely none. Not one. And the fact that there are so many 4 and 5 star reviews SHOCKS me. This is a waste of time, pure and simple.


    Any additional comments?

    If you haven't gotten the picture yet: This is bad. Avoid.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    KB Louisville, KY 04-04-13
    KB Louisville, KY 04-04-13 Member Since 2014

    Audiobook-aholic and Podcast junky! An earbud is attached to my ear throughout my workday and when I'm working out! I admit, sometimes feel a little bit of guilt that I have easy access to enthralling, thought-provoking, and entertaining material that my circle of friends haven't discovered.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "So Unbelievable that deep down you KNOW it's TRUE"
    Would you listen to Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA again? Why?

    Yes I would READ (I don't listen to audiobooks, I read them--that's my explanation and I'm sticking to it!) this book again because it's a great story.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA?

    The revelation the characters all discovered that FEAR and PANIC is a powerful weapon.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When Maddie J was testifying in court! She's a tough B!


    If you could take any character from Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Maddie J of course! She's a straight shooter who's eyes are no longer "wide shut".


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken Dallas, TX, United States 12-26-12
    Ken Dallas, TX, United States 12-26-12 Member Since 2015
    ratings
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    6
    2
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    "Worst book that I have ever read on Audible."
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Nothing


    Would you be willing to try another one of the narrators’s performances?

    It wasn't the Narrator that was the problem here, it was the author.


    What character would you cut from Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA?

    All of them


    Any additional comments?

    This book seems to be the Author's way to vent over her frustations while employed with the CIA. This read was very disappointing and a waste of money!!! Don't waste your time on this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Beth 05-04-12
    Beth 05-04-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What a Treat"

    This book worked for me on many levels: It is a suspenseful thriller; it kept me interested in the characters and the plot (which I found believable); and it was EXCEPTIONALLY well produced and performed by a very large cast of talented actors. I have hundreds of books in my library, and It is one of the few I will listen to again. This isn't just a keeper but one I will recommend to all my friends who are thinking about exploring audible books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth 05-04-12
    Elizabeth 05-04-12 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    44
    ratings
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    38
    7
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    "What a Treat"

    This book worked for me on many levels: It is a suspenseful thriller; it kept me interested in the characters and the plot (which I found believable); and it was EXCEPTIONALLY well produced and performed by a very large cast of talented actors. I have hundreds of books in my library, and It is one of the few I will listen to again. This isn't just a keeper but one I will recommend to all my friends who are thinking about exploring audible books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Mobile, AL 04-21-12
    Amazon Customer Mobile, AL 04-21-12 Member Since 2011

    Computer Scientist

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Don't bother unless you want to be angry"

    Don't bother unless you want to be angry. I listened to the first five minutes and the only content was profanity-laced tirades against everyone around the author.

    Perhaps there are some redeemding moments later in the book, but I could not make it through the self-loathing and seething hate evinced in the first few minutes.

    This isn't a book about the CIA as much as it is a book about the things that make the author angry.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Engle 10-30-11
    D. Engle 10-30-11 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    43
    ratings
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    "Plot takes backseat to anger, apology"

    I really wanted to like this book. I'm a big fan of both fiction and non-fiction espionage. I'd heard the author interviewed twice and found her interesting. But the book traded plot for rage at the bureaucracy that partially enabled the terrorists and apologies for not being able to work more effectively. Much of the dialogue is internal, switching from character to character. Mid-novel, I was tired of hearing their every thought and just wanted something to happen. When it did, it was too late and too sparsely described for me to care. It is "a novel of the CIA" as workplace rather than a center of intelligence. While there was one, possibly two, "darkly humorous" threads, they were not enough to save the book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bruce 03-22-14
    Bruce 03-22-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Waste of Time"
    What would have made Intelligence: A Novel of the CIA better?

    If this was a 2 hour long book it may be to long.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Susan Hasler again?

    No


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason J. Sharon Charleston, SC 01-07-13
    Jason J. Sharon Charleston, SC 01-07-13 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Coudn't make it past the 1 hour point"

    I really did NOT like the different narrators on one story, unlike others. It made it hard to follow.

    I got the initial impression that the author was complaining about how the CIA was run, that she would do it differently. Employees that complain about their boss annoy me. If you could do it better, apply for the job. If not, get another job, or do your job how your boss tells you to do it.

    Too much vulgar language as well.

    Just my 2 cents. Obviously, it is easier to be a critic than an author, so good job to her trying to write a novel, I couldn't do better. But if I did, it wouldn't be like this.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chad 03-20-12
    Chad 03-20-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Marginal. There is a plot somewhere under angst."

    This book does not hook you unless you're terminally filled with angst from a failed marriage and being professional maligned. The full cast performance does not add to the story; instead it is a distraction where more time is spent trying to juggle which voice corresponds to which character. It is an interesting look inside the CIA from a disaffected former employee. I certainly hope that is not what it is really like. I would like a few hours of my life and my precious monthly credit back.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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