Life Undercover: Coming of Age in the CIA
Amaryllis Fox was in her last year as an undergraduate at Oxford studying theology and international law when her writing mentor Daniel Pearl was ...more
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Giveaway dates: Nov 15 - Dec 15, 2019
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I was so pleasantly surprised by this book. Usually, with 'memoirs' surrounding war and violence, I find that I lose interest quickly either out of repetitiveness or because the events are tough to swallow. Life Undercover was nothing like that at all. It was very much about the strain that being an undercover agent had on Fox's relationships with colleagues, with men, and with her family.
It was moving in every way, particularly from the halfway point where she talks ...more
This is the absolutely riveting story of a modern day spy, a real life James Bond, although, as she notes, Bond is ridiculous; in the real world of espionage, "one street chase and my cover is blown for life." This is the story of how Ms. Fox became a spy, what that life cost her and what it gained, and why she left.
This memoir exposes so many secret lives, all at once. Ms Fox talks about being recruited ...more
I wasn't exactly expecting Sydney Bristow and Alias or anything like that, but that's kind of what I got (minus the Rambaldi Device). Fox led a most impressive and unique life. At 21, she was recruited by the CIA and fast-tracked into ops training. I could almost see the film montage of that particularly grueling training. I was keenly fascinated by the chess-like maneuvering that Fox employs juggling intelligence, contacts, classified info, and targets. What I really wanted more of was her adjustment(minus ...more
> Many of the d ...more
I received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do 😸.
Amaryllis Fox's riveting memoir tells the story of her ten years in the most elite ...more
Added bonus, author reads for the audio version. Well done.
Fascinating look at how a CIA agent is built. She was certainly meant for this job, starting with her family upbringing, travels to Europe and inquisitive mind.
I can only imagine the stories she didn’t (or couldn’t) tell.
Glad she got out alive, with her wits, and is using her experience to try to make the world a better place.
The work is heavy with the author's thoughts and emotions, especially those involving her marriage ...more
Fox takes us through her rather unconventional childhood to her college years, where she develops an algorithm to predict the likelihood of a terrorist attack in any given location. Naturally this piques the interest of the CIA, who ...more
Given the restrictions of her work and the restrictions the CIA places on books published by past employees, I suppose its not shocking to see the book be relatively thin. It's basically a brief chronology of her upbringing, how she came to the attention of CIA (and MI6), and how she was ultimately recruited and trained. And her eventual retirement.
There's little in there in terms of operational details, which again isn't really surpri ...more
It came across as totally believable that a person who grew up like she did would end up in the CIA (!! but who grows up like that?! swimming races under the iced pool, et ...more
The book was very readable, and felt like a thriller at times. And with thrillers, there is a lack of character development as it slows down the story. Here I wanted it to slow down and provide us more. I wanted more of her personal relationships, particularly with the husbands, and why with the second one they ch ...more