The Unexpected Spy: From the CIA to the FBI, My Secret Life Taking Down Some of the World’s Most Notorious Terrorists by Tracy Walder and Jessica Anya Blau is an account of Ms. Walder who went straight from being a college sorority girl to the CIA. After her stint at the CIA, Ms. Walder joined the FBI for a short time, and is now a teacher.
- 272 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1250230985
This memoir by Tracy Walder nee Tracy Schandler tells of her time in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), which recruited her right out of college. Ms. Schandler worked in counter-terrorism after the September 11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and the insights she gives about the work her and her fellow patriots did at the CIA before and after. Throughout the story, Ms. Schandler recounts pivotal moments from her upbringing, especially her school years, which influenced her later decisions.
After some time in the CIA, Ms. Schandler decided she might be able to contribute more to the safety of the nation by joining the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). The experience in the FBI, however, was not as what she expected. Her instructors at the academy were misogynists and anti-Semites, which made the three months training period even more difficult. Afterwards, Ms. Schandler felt marginalized and left the FBI after only 15 months.
It was a sad statement that the FBI would user its academy to filter out people who are not in the “club”, according to Ms. Schandler. Several high profile law suits against the FBI might have changed all that, and might even change the history of the FBI.
The Unexpected Spy: From the CIA to the FBI, My Secret Life Taking Down Some of the World’s Most Notorious Terrorists by Tracy Walder and Jessica Anya Blau was an easy read, relatable and straightforward. I found the author’s insights fascinating, especially about the day-to-day activities of her job. In the book, which was cleared with both agencies, the author left the redacted parts in (blank, of course) which I thought was a good choice since the reader had some idea why certain things were missing. For those of us who keep up with politics and international affairs we could make an educated guess of what was not included.
Zohar — Man of la Book
Disclaimer: I got this book for free.
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