Monday, August 11, 2014

VMI Summer Reading (Unofficial): Spy Novels (26 to 30)


Three novels that revolve around the Kennedy assassination, and two that detail the intricacies of tradecraft.

26. Saving the Queen, William F. Buckley

The first of the Blackford Oakes novels. The series traces the history of the CIA throughout the Cold War. This first novel includes many intriguing details of CIA recruitment and tradecraft. Mr. Buckley was himself a former United States intelligence officer.

27. Libra, Don DeLillo

Go figure, the best book on the Kennedy assassination is a novel by one of our greatest contemporary writers. “There's always more to it. This is what history consists of. It is the sum total of the things they aren't telling us.”  

28. American Tabloid, James Ellroy

The second best book on the Kennedy assassination is also a novel, by our finest crime writer. His L.A. Confidential is also great (as was the movie inspired by the book).

29. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, John le Carre

The classic spy novel.

30. The Tears of Autumn, Charles McCarry

Wait, wait, I take it back -- this is the best book on the Kennedy assassination, and it's also a novel, by a former intelligence officer and the author of the greatest series of spy novels ever (sorry, Ian Fleming), the Paul Christopher books.

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