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BOOK REVIEW: THE FAITHFUL SPY
BY ALEX BERENSON

We hope you enjoy this book review by Allen Hott.



John Wells, a top CIA agent, joins AlQueda forces in Pakistan before 9/11 and after proving his worth he is given THE assignment. Wells has renounced his U.S. citizenship (at least the jihadis believe so). And he has become a Muslim (and this he has done with sincerity as his own religious upbringing was somewhat lax.). Wells has carried out every task that he has been assigned and has proven himself worthy in the eyes of his superiors.

None of the agents that Wells left behind in CIA headquarters believes that he will ever return and they mostly feel that he has gone over to the enemy. His immediate superior, Jennifer Exley, however has maintained her faith in him and has somewhat convinced her cohort, Ellis Shaver, of Wells’ real task. Shaver has recently been demoted because he was one of the few in the Joint Task Force who actually predicted that the United States was about to be attacked prior to 9/11.

Exactly how Wells is able to keep up his false front and be chosen to be one of the members of THE assignment is brought forth by Berenson in a logical and clever manner. How Wells manages to stay in touch with Exley (even sporadically) is a little harder to believe. However Berenson does have a good background in the Middle East having worked as a reporter in Iraq and other areas.

The various characters that are introduced in the book are not only believable but they also bring in some intriguing situations. Especially interesting is one gentleman who is working for AlQueda ad a biochemist. He is working hard to perfect a strain of the plague that can be transmitted quickly and easily. But while he is busily doing this in his basement his wife, thinking he is quietly going out of his mind, becomes involved with another man. This small additive to the entire story is done well and increases the believability of the whole story line in a unique way.

Also the matching of Wells and Exley works out for an interesting subplot as the two of them have their own muddied up backgrounds and it almost seems as though they were not in fact meant for each other.

Alex Berenson has put together a very timely and interesting story in The Faithful Spy that keeps the reader involved and wondering what happens next. The entire book moves well and builds to an expected but climatic ending.

REVIEWED BY ALLEN HOTT

DO NOT REPRINT WITHOUT PERMISSION OF THE REVIEWER, ALLEN HOTT


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