David E. HoffmanNov 15, 2015
The Billion Dollar Spy
A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal
David E. Hoffman's The Billion Dollar Spy: A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal (Doubleday, 2015) was first brought to my attention in a superb interview conducted with the author at The International Spy Museum. The story immediately captivated my attention and I realized this would be a perfect book to feature on New Books in National Security. I was not disappointed; Mr. Hoffman is as captivating a speaker as he is a writer, capable of weaving together immaculately recreated historical threads. The book is as compelling as it is revealing, delving deep into what Hoffman calls the "sweaty" reality of the intelligence battles fought behind the Iron Curtain during the Cold War. Drawing on extensive interviews, declassified CIA cables, and personal experience walking the very streets of Moscow where his subjects lived and died, Hoffman offers an impressive standard for future storytelling on the realities of spycraft. The Billion Dollar Spy is among the most fascinating and thrilling reads I have enjoyed in recent memory, and I highly recommend it to anyone at all interested in the Cold War or espionage writ large.