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Publisher's Summary

A cybersecurity expert and former FBI “ghost” tells the thrilling story of how he helped take down notorious FBI mole Robert Hanssen, the first Russian cyber spy.

“Both a real-life, tension-packed thriller and a persuasive argument for traditional intelligence work in the information age.” (Bruce Schneier, New York Times best-selling author of Data and Goliath and Click Here to Kill Everybody)

Eric O’Neill was only 26 when he was tapped for the case of a lifetime: a one-on-one undercover investigation of the FBI’s top target, a man suspected of spying for the Russians for nearly two decades, giving up nuclear secrets, compromising intelligence, and betraying US assets. With zero training in face-to-face investigation, O’Neill found himself in a windowless, high-security office in the newly formed Information Assurance Section, tasked officially with helping the FBI secure its outdated computer system against hackers and spies - and unofficially with collecting evidence against his new boss, Robert Hanssen, an exacting and rage-prone veteran agent with a fondness for handguns. In the months that follow, O’Neill’s self-esteem and young marriage unravel under the pressure of life in Room 9930, and he questions the very purpose of his mission. But as Hanssen outmaneuvers an intelligence community struggling to keep up with the new reality of cybersecurity, he also teaches O’Neill the game of spycraft. The student will just have to learn to outplay his teacher if he wants to win.

A tension-packed stew of power, paranoia, and psychological manipulation, Gray Day is also a cautionary tale of how the United States allowed Russia to become dominant in cyberespionage - and how we might begin to catch up. 

©2019 Eric O'Neill (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“If Robert Ludlum spitballed an espionage story with a Russian hacker, they might have conjured up with something as wild and riveting as Gray Day. Except that this yarn, incredibly, is true. An enthralling spy tale that feels ever more relevant with each passing day.” (Dave Howard, author of Chasing Phil: The Adventures of Two Undercover Agents with the World's Most Charming Con Man)

“What job could possibly be twisty, mind-bending, and demanding than being an undercover spy in one of the FBI’s own cybersecurity units? With resolute doggedness, shrewd psychological instincts, and the sheer guts to make critical split-second decisions, rookie agent Eric O’Neill helped to turn the tables on his own boss - one of the most dangerous traitors of our time. In Gray Day he weaves together his personal and professional stories with all the skills of a seasoned novelist. The result is a thrilling, page-turning brew worthy of Hollywood - only better because it’s real.” (Elisabeth Elo, author of Finding Katarina M.

"Gray Day is both a real-live tension packed thriller, and a persuasive argument for traditional intelligence work in the information age." (Bruce Schneier, New York Times best-selling author of Data and Goliath and Click Here to Kill Everybody

What listeners say about Gray Day

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A Real Spy Story

O'Neill has written a first-class memoir detailing his undercover mission to expose America's greatest traitor. Far from the Bond-like adventure we think of, the real work is gritty, sometimes boring, but also dangerous. It also has a tremendous impact on families. This is a spy story and a darn good one!

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Amazing story.

Absolutely amazing story on many levels. very frightening description of how our communications and technology are compromised by Russia and China. everyone should be required to listen or read it.

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Too much chaff not enough wheat

The good spy stuff is in there but mixed in with fluff and prose that just wasn't interesting enough to warrant inclusion. And seriously, you can skip all of the chapters after Hanssen is caught. They're just some slightly veiled promotion for the author and his security company. The case is barely mentioned again. My advice: if you're interested in the case, watch the movie and save yourself seven hours.

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Great story

I enjoyed the book once I started I did not put down. As a security professional this was a good story of an insider threat!!!!

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phenomenal book

just a great listen and book. author is brutally honest and does not try to make himself a superhero. really fantastic

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An excellent read!

This book kept me listening almost addictively until the end. It's a story of catching a spy, but also a story of a human being trying to balance an intense job, an abusive boss, and an increasingly difficult home life, made more so by the author's understanding that the extraordinary tension at work was stressing what could have been a good marriage almost to the breaking point. This country has a lot of heroes, and some of them have desk jobs. Highly recommended!

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Good story....fun to listen to

The book was suspenseful and fun to listen to. I also learned a few more things about the FBI.

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  • 04-13-20

One finest Conter-esp Audibles ever

One must listen from the author's own mouth, in his own words, (and, this is important): one must learn and experience the narrative as Mr. O'Neil experiences it. The less you know of this case and this book the more you will have an amazing experience. The writing and vocal performance are top-notch (this from a reader who reads a lot, and is allergic to middling writing). Enjoy

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Riveting and unsettling

I saw the movie that is based on this book. So glad I took the time to read the book; glad I did it in the order of movie first. Incredible story, a real page-turner

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WTF

I didn't get this book to hear about your personal life. Too much personal story.