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Publisher's Summary

The number-one New York Times best seller, now with a new preface! 

In his audiobook, A Higher Loyalty, former FBI director James Comey shares his never-before-told experiences from some of the highest stakes situations of his career in the past two decades of American government, exploring what good, ethical leadership looks like and how it drives sound decisions. His journey provides an unprecedented entry into the corridors of power and a remarkable lesson in what makes an effective leader. 

Mr. Comey served as director of the FBI from 2013 to 2017, appointed to the post by President Barack Obama. He previously served as US attorney for the Southern District of New York and the US deputy attorney general in the administration of President George W. Bush. From prosecuting the mafia and Martha Stewart to helping change the Bush administration's policies on torture and electronic surveillance and overseeing the Hillary Clinton email investigation as well as ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, Comey has been involved in some of the most consequential cases and policies of recent history.

©2018 James Comey (P)2018 Macmillan Audio

Critic Reviews

"Comey's conversational tone instantly connects with the listener, and hearing him deliver the book's highly charged contents in his own voice brings authenticity and immediacy to the presentation.... This greatly anticipated, revelatory memoir needs to be heard." (AudioFile)

"It was essential that Comey himself narrate this book, not only because his absence would have distracted listeners familiar with his voice but also because only the author could credibly convey the range of raw emotions emanating from the experiences he shares from this most eventful of lives." (Booklist, starred review)

Featured Article: Politics Audiobooks and Podcasts You Should Be Listening to in 2021


Every aspect of our lives as American citizens—from education to law and justice, from healthcare to financial stability—is directly impacted by the systems that rule us and the leaders who guide us. No matter where you lie on the political spectrum, getting engaged and exercising your civic duty begins with listening. The collection below offers works of nonfiction that shed new light on our democratic process.

Editor's Pick

I’m shocked...
"...shocked at how much I loved this listen. This was an incredibly human story with a true narrative arc that hooked me the entire time. As the daughter of two trial attorneys I was fascinated by Comey's rise through our justice system, and truly enjoyed the anecdotes he shared about some of the cases that shaped both him as a man and his career. Nonfiction rarely tops my favorites list, but this was the best title I listened to in 2018."
Katie O., Audible Editor

What listeners say about A Higher Loyalty

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Insightful, nuanced and encouraging

When Comey was let go, I understood that there was more to it than the official story made it out to be. In this book, we follow his career from even before the very beginning, learning to understand how he thinks and why he thinks that way. Hearing him describe the differences working for Bush, Obama, and Trump, we gain an insight into his unique experience, and an understanding of the dangers of the Trump presidency. That said; despite the very negative outlook on the Trump presidency, Comey ends the book on a strong note of positivity, describing the rebound that is sure to happen following a presidency such as this one. I hope he's right.

11 people found this helpful

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It’s....hard to pin down

I think I respected Comey more before I got this book. I wanted to actually read it instead of casting judgements based on sound bites and poorly edited interviews. I truly felt that he was in a difficult position during the election and still feel that much of the country seems hell bent on tribalism at any cost and it’s disturbing. Whether or not I agreed with his actions I did think he was doing his best to serve in his role with honesty. Now....I’m not so sure. After listening to his drawn out explanation it becomes clear he absolutely DID act outside of accepted procedures which essentially means he went against what he also claims to believe in. And it basically poured gasoline on the dumpster fire. The empty fire extinguisher you now wield is useless Mr. Comey. And it doesn’t give me any joy to say it.

4 people found this helpful

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Well done!

Although I disagree with how Mr. Comey handled the press in the Clinton matter. I now understand why and appreciate the honesty and humility of the book. Additionally, I appreciate how simple and understandable the information was given. It really resonated for me that truth is not complicated. However, dishonesty requires great effort to maintain. Well done!

24 people found this helpful

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More Than Trump: All Comey's Life/Working Years--

Actually, this is a really, really good book by a man who winds up coming off as someone who has walked a fine non-partisan line for a long, long time.
I truly expected to come away from listening to A Higher Loyalty, rolling my eyes. Not because I'm a big Trump fan or anything, but coming so soon after his high-profile firing, I thought it would be bashing and filled with self-sanctimonious tirades. And it's anything but.
Wow. Comey has been through it all: From Martha Stewart, through surveillance and torture programs; from coming from an agency that borders on almost totally white, through keeping a memo authorizing the surveillance of MLK (okayed by Robert Kennedy) as a reminder that that which is not looked at carefully could lead good people far, far astray.
Cheney comes off as hideous, Hillary is a piece of work, Obama could be vastly over-confident but was willing to listen and learn (which surprised Comey; he thought that, coming as an appointment from a Republican president, a Democrat would dislike him grievously).
And yes, there's the utter outrage that happened with the Russians, and quite a bit to do with Trump.
Just don't come into this book thinking it's a vast tell-all about Trump with bashing thrown in for good measure. This is about a kid who avoided bullies (tho' he once joined their ranks to his forever shame), a young man who lost an infant son, a hard worker who tried to give Alberto Gonzales a backbone, somebody who has tried to bridge the gap between law enforcement and the black citizens who are unfairly targeted.
To someone who is raising a red flag about what went on and what continues to go on today. Sprinkled throughout it a touch of ribald language with a heavy dose of humor.
Another reviewer expressed that they couldn't multitask whilst listening to this, and I found that to be true for me as well. I was up all night.

606 people found this helpful

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Not what I expected

I didn’t have much of an opinion regarding James Comey before listening. At the end I feel much different. Vastly entertaining, well written, beautifully narrated,surprisingly detailed. This is a great read regardless of your political affiliation.

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Comey took 8 hours to justify what he leaked

Comey has some interesting stories but still didn’t convince me he isn’t a partisan hack.

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A Brilliant Civics Lesson

James Comey had a long and distinguished career before he was fired by Donald Trump, and his blockbuster best-seller spends more time establishing his credibility than dishing dirt. His autobiographical account is necessarily one-sided, since that’s what an autobiography is, but persuasive.

The man who ultimately inherited the job of the legendary J. Edgar Hoover is obviously intelligent and principled, and deeply patriotic. He’s also an excellent writer and narrator whose tales of prosecuting mafia dons and even Martha Stewart make this a real page-turner. He does a credible job of explaining how he handled the Clinton email investigation, which was a series of incredibly difficult decisions, often with no good choices. Diehard Hillary partisans will probably disagree.

He’s more than halfway through before the subject swings to Trump. Ominously, Comey repeatedly returns to the parallels with the mob bosses he prosecuted.

At a highly uncomfortable private White House dinner, Trump demands his loyalty, and seems either incapable of understanding the independent role of the FBI, or simply doesn’t care.

“It would never occur to an ethical leader to ask for loyalty,” Comey observes.

In Comey’s telling, the White House becomes a bizarre house of mirrors, inhabited by a president who is dishonest, unhinged, narcissistic, and just not very bright.

“As I found myself thrust into the Trump orbit, I once again was having flashbacks to my earlier career as a prosecutor against the mob. The silent circle of assent, the boss in complete control, the loyalty oaths, the ‘us versus them’ worldview, the lying about all things large and small in service to some code of loyalty that put the organization above morality, and above the truth.”

The book’s epilogue in the closing minutes is a brilliant summation to a jury of the American people by a veteran federal prosecutor. It should be required reading in every high school civics class.

3 people found this helpful

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A must-listen for every leader and every American

First, Comey is an absolutely exceptional narrator! I've listened to many, many audio books and his narration is right up there with some of the best. But the subject matter of the book is fascinating. Don't think this is just a referendum on the "e-mails" and Trump. The covers Comey's entire fascinating career and shares lessons learned in critical moments that would test the most seasoned leader. Comey brings great humor and behind the scenes stories to some of the biggest crimes and most relevant current events of our age.

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Who Exactly is FBI Director James Comey Loyal To?

July 5, 2016 - The date America started learning that the Higher Loyalty we thought the very people we trusted to secure America, defend our freedoms, protect our children & uphold the rule of law were the very the people destroying it from within. It started when the American people fell asleep and will end when we wake up. I am writing this today on 11/04/2019 & as of this minute none of the people who betrayed our trust has been held accountable, instead, they are getting book deals like this, jobs with fortune 500 companies, consultants on our News Stations & movies! There is zero accountably to date for their crimes. We The People, with the help of President Donald J. Trump, whom they are now trying to impeach for a telephone call he had with the President of Ukraine because their Russian Hoax fell apart, are fighting to Drain The Swamp & hold these people accountable. Hopefully, we were successful so that you and your family, our children & grandchildren never have to go through this. MAGA-Q

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Comey is selling baloney - I am not buying

The early chapters of this book are about Comey’s early career and they contain interesting anecdotes, some minor confessions and self-deprecating comments. But from chapter one I noticed something. For forty years I have owned from one to four jewelry stores and I have attended a gazillion trade shows. I have been bombarded with thousands of sales pitches – people wanting me to buy their jewelry lines wholesale and sell them in my store(s). From the beginning of this book it was obvious that Comey was selling something. One thing he was selling was the notion that he is above politics. But he recalled meetings ten and twenty years earlier and he knew exactly who sat next to the top guy, who sat at the foot of the table and who sat on the sidelines. The memories of a highly political person. The last half of the book made it clear that his mission was to make Trump look bad and make himself look above petty politics. It had been made public that he and the FBI started writing the report about not charging Hillary Clinton even before the investigation was over and even before Clinton was interviewed. Comey dismissed this very unprofessional behavior with a brief and weak argument. Just a few sentences. But when he got on the subject of the discredited Russian dossier he repeated the salacious accusations against Trump over and over and over. Comey was selling himself as a highly ethical man but this was unbelievably sleazy. After meetings with Trump, Comey, in a highly political move, wrote a memo about each meeting and took it home so he could call it personal property. But he shared each memo with top staff. So what was it? Personal or property of the FBI? You can’t have it both ways. And he leaked one of the memos hoping it prompt a special prosecutor for a Russian probe. This is not a boy scout who is above the fray of Washington politics. This is a down and dirty player who played a leading role in taking the FBI way off mission. After the IG report Comey said that this confirmed that he did not leak classified material to media. You have to watch Comey’s word choices very carefully. As Byron York commented at TheHill.com Comey did leak classified information to his attorneys who were not authorized to see it. And he asked one of them to leak it to the media. The IG report also revealed that Comey lied when he told Trump that he was not being investigated. He was. Comey is selling the idea that he is loyal to a higher standard. I am not buying because this is not true. Trump fired him and he wanted revenge. And being the down and dirty kind of guy Comey is, he had no trouble writing a smear book.

2 people found this helpful