Book Review: The Able Archers by Brian J. Morra

February 28, 2024


The Able Archers by Brian J. Morra is a historical fiction novel taking place in 1983 when the United States and the Soviet Union were on the brink of nuclear war. Mr. Morra is a former U.S. intelligence officer and a retired senior aerospace executive.

  • 296 pages
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Koehler Books
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1646635647

Book Review: The Able Archers by Brian J. Morra
My rating for The Able Archers – 5
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This book is a fantastic account of a terrifying event that very few know about. I was on the edge of my seat till the very end 
 and I knew how it was going to end (spoiler: there was no nuclear war in 1983).

The Able Archers by Brian J. Morra manages to build momentum and create tension without guns, car chases, or any other cliches. Instead, we get teletypes, briefings, and secure communications which create anxiety just as much as explosives.

Through Col. Levchenko we get to experience the Soviet paranoia of an imminent nuclear attack. The even-minded officer, gives us an insight into the paranoia that afflicted the Soviet high command, convinced that the US and NATO were disguising their initial attack as an exercise.

The book shows how the world teeters on the edge, and its existence rests in the hands of even-minded unknown analysts, doing a grey job, in grey rooms, under huge amounts of pressure, and great consequences if they get things wrong. Mr. Morra gets this point across in an exciting, readable manner without using much military/governmental jargon.

I’m glad I stumbled on this book, it deserves an audience and wider circulation. Mr. Morra has a talent for writing, the book doesn’t read like an intelligence brief, but historical fiction at its best.

The book has a combination of real and fictional characters, which the author outlines as well. I was glad to read about Stanislov Petrov, a hero who stopped World War III in 1983, after the KAL007 incident.


Junior Air Force Intelligence Officer Kevin Cattani is quickly becoming a rising star in the Air Force due to his cool head, ability to work under pressure, and ability to correctly analyze complex situations. Being in the right place at the right time, Captain Cattani earns the trust and respect of senior officers.

Colonel Ivan Levchenko of the GRU Intelligence is investigating of KAL007 incident that happened, from a Soviet perspective. He is also part of RYaN, a Russian program for nuclear missile attacks.

The American Captain and the Soviet Colonel scramble to avert an all-out nuclear war, while the diplomats refuse to practice diplomacy.

Buy The Able Archers from*
More Books by Brian J. Morra*

Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer: I got this book for free
*Ama­zon links point to an affil­i­ate account

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