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Left of Boom Paperback – April 25, 2017
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"Mr. Laux brings a raw perspective to the canon. His memoir is not filled with recollections of White House meetings or lengthy defenses of waterboarding. Mr. Laux was thousands of miles from Washington, a grunt in a secret war." - New York Times
"The first glimpse of a younger generation of CIA spies whose careers have been defined by the War on Terror. . . . Laux's narrative offers new insights, bludgeoned as they were by agency censors, into how the CIA goes about the business of war zone espionage." - NBC News
"Every bit as riveting and even more spellbinding than the best the thriller genre has to offer. . . . In addition to providing a superb glimpse at the minutia involved in [being a CIA case officer], Left of Boom also does a splendid job of revealing the psychological and emotional costs in undertaking such a dangerous undercover mission." ―Providence Journal
"This is an unvarnished, critical look at the inner workings of the CIA...Smith is able to present unique descriptions of the psychological stresses endured by the CIA case officers who are forced to lie to even their closest family and friends about what they do, where they are, and whom they work for. It’s a fascinating and engaging look inside the fast-paced and dangerous daily workings of today’s CIA." - Publishers Weekly
"Left of Boom is a riveting personal story of how a young CIA operative, attached to the National Clandestine Service (NCS) and fresh out of college, managed to actually penetrate into the Talban and Al-Qaeda.... This story is absolutely fascinating and provides readers with a very rare look at just how CIA operatives live and work at the tip of the spear." - Don Mann, SEAL Team SIX (ret), co-author of Inside SEAL Team SIX
"Left of Boom is a rollicking read that really gets us inside the life and mind of a CIA operations officer." - Peter Bergen, author of Manhunt: The Ten-Year Search for bin Laden from 9/11 to Abbottabad
About the Author
DOUGLAS LAUX is a former CIA operations officer who served multiple tours throughout the Middle East. He was in Afghanistan for the 2010 Afghan Surge and in Kandahar during Operation Neptune Spear, which resulted in the death of Usama bin Ladin. His final assignment was with the top secret task force involved with instigating the Syrian civil war. He lives in Washington, DC.
RALPH PEZZULLO is the bestselling author of Jawbreaker, Inside SEAL Team Six, and others.
- Publisher : Griffin; Reprint edition (April 25, 2017)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 318 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1250116880
- ISBN-13 : 978-1250116888
- Item Weight : 12 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.73 x 0.8 x 8.86 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #255,607 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Laux does a great job of telling the stories he believes need to be told. Strangely enough, his style was to just try to tell EVERYTHING without holding back and then let the folks in Washington decide what should and shouldn't be redacted. The results were fascinating and even more informative than I expected. In some cases you could read between the lines of the redactions (which were actual black bars across the page) to figure out what was going on. The details (like the amount of money paid to sources in the field) weren't critical to the story and things kept moving along regardless of the blanks. Some pages were entirely filled with black bars, which was kind of comical but also underscored the sensitivity of the topic. I'm still shocked with how much he was actually allowed to print.
Stories like his should be required reading for all Americans. How else will we ever know what's actually happening in the world and how else will we begin to understand the sacrifices that so many men and women are making on our behalf?
The contents of this book were gripping and the co-writing was excellent.
Thank you Doug Laux for your service to our country.
For what I assume is the author's first attempt at writing, it's pretty darn good. There are some holes, such as, I wanted to know more about his personal relationships with the women in his life. I felt there were pieces that were left out, or not given their due.
That said, I found the insight into his life in the CIA and his interactions with the Taliban to be fascinating to the point I found myself citing the book when speaking with others. Any time a story can leave me thinking about it during my day tells me it's a good one.
So thanks for that.
I recommend this book to anyone who has even a passing interest in either the CIA or the Taliban.
Some reviewers write that's he's a bit heartless but I think a bit young and blissfully unselfaware especially regarding the relationship drama in the book is more accurate. "I'm going for a quick walk to relax.", "doug you've been gone for 3 hours"...and so on...
The blackened out redacted portions are hilarious as you can guess half of the words and it doesn't seem there are any real secrets in the original to begin with.
Doug Laux tells his tale of his eight year career undercover with the Central Intelligence Agency in a raw, unvarnished way.
You won't feel great about our government when you finish this book, but you will be amazed by the resilience and commitment of the young men and women who risk their lives everyday with the realization that any credit for their efforts will never see the light of day.