Review: Ignatius’s the Increment

The Increment: A Novel
David Ignatius

David Ignatius is a true beltway insider. He writes for the Washington Post and he is a regular guest on Sunday morning talk show. However, unlike most beltway reporters, when he turns his hand to fiction, he can write a better than average spy thriller.

By far Ignatius’ best book is Body of Lies, but Increment isn’t too shabby either.

Shuttling between machinations within the C.I.A. and goings on in Iran, it is an entertaining ride. Ignatius knows the Middle East well, having covered it for number of years and his details about life in Iran ring true, but this book is at its best in describing the personalities and politics which play out within the American espionage and national security community. Though this book has its fair share of action, it is the meetings and deals brokered and broken which resonate. On the spy writer spectrum, Ignatius falls on the LeCarre side of things, his hero’s are flawed, but often idealistic and the government for which he works is at time incompetent. But that is what real life espionage is like, though I doubt it often hold as much excited as Ignatius generates in the final chapters of this book.

Recommended for the enthusiast.

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