Patrick Brown's Reviews > The Company We Keep: A Husband-and-Wife True-Life Spy Story

The Company We Keep by Robert B. Baer
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's review
Mar 02, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: spy-thrillers, memoirsandbios
Read from December 17 to 22, 2012

Disappointing, mostly because the bar had been set so high by Baer's previous books, particularly See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism. The first half of the book lived up to that earlier title, with Bob and Dayna trading incredible spy stories. A particular highlight was the section in which Bob brought Yuri, the KGB agent, to the US for a vacation. Yuri, a native of Tajikistan, marveled at the TV in his hotel room, the meals they served on the plane, the Clemson football game he attended. Great stuff. I also enjoyed seeing Dayna's side of the CIA. She had more the action-hero career than Bob did, it seems.

Unfortunately, the book didn't feel like it held together as it should have. It read more like a series of vignettes than a narrative, and as much as I'm happy for them (since they are, you know, real people), I didn't find myself that engaged with their adoption struggle.

If you're looking for a Robert Baer book to read, I would definitely start with See No Evil and Sleeping with the Devil. While this offered something a little different, it didn't thrill me in quite the way those did.
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Reading Progress

12/17/2012 page 73
22.0% "Bob Baer's life is bonkers. How many crazy spy stories can one guy have?"
12/17/2012 page 94
29.0% "This section with Yuri in America is like Borat, if Borat were a KGB officer."
12/18/2012 page 191
59.0% "I clearly know the wrong people: nobody I know would pay for my swanky hotel room in Cannes." 2 comments
12/22/2012 page 260
81.0% "For a short book, this is kind of dragging."

Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Louise (new)

Louise Career aspiration?

Patrick Brown Louise wrote: "Career aspiration?"

Shh. Nobody can know my secret double life.

message 3: by rivka (new)

rivka Too late. BUSTED!

Brian yeah felt the same way when i read it, patrick. (note that i was particularly interested in reading because you vouched for baer... ;) ).

Patrick Brown Brian wrote: "yeah felt the same way when i read it, patrick. (note that i was particularly interested in reading because you vouched for baer... ;) )."

I'm sorry you started with this one, BP. Definitely would've recommended See No Evil instead.

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