• The Bossy Bookworm

Review of The Unexpected Spy: From the CIA to the FBI, My Secret Life... by Tracy Walder

Updated: Aug 21, 2020

I love a peek at a secret world, and here Walder offers fascinating glimpses of her life as a CIA and an FBI agent.

I love a peek at a secret world, and in The Unexpected Spy, Tracy Walder offers fascinating glimpses of her life as a CIA and an FBI agent, including training details, political machinations, significant and rankling discrimination. She explores her own glowing pride in doing her job well and protecting others from danger—even when anyone without security clearance remained necessarily ignorant of the invaluable nature of the work and the imminent risks avoided. Her evolution into her present-day self and current profession was satisfying to witness as well.


Printing the redactions as strikethrough text of the equivalent length to what was omitted jarred me at first, and I wondered about this approach, but as the book went on, this method made sense and worked for me.


I would’ve liked this to be twice as long with even more more more detail!


St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley provided me with an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


What did you think?

I love a behind-the-scenes nonfiction spy book! Another book that's quite different in tone but is an excellent look into Cold War-era spy goings-on is The Spy and the Traitor by Ben Macintyre.


Do you have books along these lines that you loved?

#nonfiction, #memoir, #spy, #politicssocialjustice, #fourstarbookreview