Customer Reviews


12 Reviews
5 star:
 (6)
4 star:
 (4)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the reality of spying
So many books on espionage concentrate on James Bond style gadgets. This book avoids that and,as well as chapters defining what intelligence is, developing a cover or new identity,and surveillance and countersurveillance, it has excellent information on the core of espionage which is agent recruitment. This book stresses how to build relationships or if you want to be...
Published on 19 Jan 2005 by Amazon Customer

versus
15 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars MI6 huh ?
I had read "Kilo17", and was very surprised to find out about this book from Ferguson. Well, really, how much of an expert can he pretend to be, given he has barely spent a year or two with 6 ?
That's what he says in his first book, when he explains how he ended up assigned to HMCE.
Mind you the book content is not uninteresting, but nothing you can't find...
Published on 1 Sep 2005 by Sam Jones


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the reality of spying, 19 Jan 2005
By 
Amazon Customer "WHITECRANE" (the MIDLANDS) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
So many books on espionage concentrate on James Bond style gadgets. This book avoids that and,as well as chapters defining what intelligence is, developing a cover or new identity,and surveillance and countersurveillance, it has excellent information on the core of espionage which is agent recruitment. This book stresses how to build relationships or if you want to be cynical about it,how to manipulate people.
Forget the movies and read this book written by an ex-MI6 officer.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great place to start, 3 May 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
This is clearly designed to be an introduction to the subject for the general public so I suppose specialists will know much of what is in here, but even so it is an excellent read, especially good for dipping into rather than reading cover to cover. It is also a fascinating book because it is the only one about the craft of spying written by a real former MI6 officer. The emphasis of the book (the manipulation of people rather than use of bugs and gadgets) is intriguing. But the big question is: what happened to the TV series which the book was supposed to accompany? It's sounds as though it would have been great, but I never even heard that it was on.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Spy: A Handbook, 24 May 2009
By 
Stegman "Bookwurm" (The Netherlands) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
I think this book can't go without a DVD about this series because the writer refers to situations that happen in the series. It's a nice book, readable and not to farfetching. Entertaining and interesting.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars great book with great details, 30 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
well this book is really good and contains some great information. however it will be even better if you watch the documentary first. you can watch it on youtube ( all 10 episodes).

I rate it with 4 stars because I think each single book should come with a documentary CD so people can watch it before start reading it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Real World Spying, 4 Aug 2013
By 
Charles - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
This book is written by former M16 spy Harry Ferguson and is intended to accompany a TV series about becoming a spy. This book is about the real world of spying so no James Bond style secret moon bases here.

Things covered in the book:

Skills needed to be a spy and what spies actually do.

Living a secret life, the stress of strains of living a lie and the constant fear of being found out.

How to recruit people to be agents ( agents are non spies that give the spy information)
how to persuading people to become agents and how to communicate with them in secret using things such as dead letter box.

Surveillance and counter surveillance. How to follow people without them knowing including tactics for dealing with the target making u turns, crossing the road, going in shops etc and advice on what to do if people are following you.

How to check if your been spied on. Checking your home from break ins, checking rooms for bugs, checking if your mail has been read, checking your car for bombs and bugs.

Joining the real spies. Morality, mental pressures, how being a spy effects your family , does intelligence actually do any good, how to handle being tortured and where to apply to join.

The book states that it does not give away any secrets not already in the public domain so don't expect anything new, but it's still informative and an excellent read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, 24 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
So easy to read - one of the best writing styles. It's fluent, straight to the point, and a great book with lots of tips. I passed it on to my sister because it's one of those books I think everyone should read as you'd get something out of it about human behaviour.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book for Intelligence Agencies Operational Methods, and the most complete overview available in print to the public !!, 4 Sep 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
This book is highly recommended to anyone with an interest in the operational methods and phychology behind todays spies, operatives, cut-outs and 'consultants' in the field. Rather than focus on silly stunts and gadgets, often concieved by the male ego and fiction writers, it is a thorough and indepth insight into the every day techniques and methods that any 'agent' or operative would use on a daily basis. The comprehensive information and personal approach to it all makes it feel like a bespoke manual for a recruit, rather than a generic overview that is often seen in the public domain.

Most importantly it describes in detail the personality traits and communication skills required and looked for, in any modern day operative. From designing a detailed alias, to constructing a reliable network, to being able to 'utilise' unsuspecting third parties, how to gain access via other people, and generally all the little details you need to know when either observing a mark, or having to employ counter surveillance techniques at any time.

Most impressively it covers every aspect from recruitment, basic profiling, manipulation, working in a team, diplomacy and the all-important psychology and cognitive behaviour to back it all up. The various surveillance methods, assessment points and strategic techniques are also described in great detail, so the reader can really get a greater picture of what could be happening around them in the field, both during deployment and when under observation.

A highly recommended read, and the most impressive collection of accurate and useful inside information available in one book today !! If it also contained a self-defence and hand to hand combat section, then it would almost be a complete training manual for any SIS recruit...

Louie Blystad-Collins - DoP - Bristol, England
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting..., 4 Feb 2009
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
Packed with intriguing tradecraft but it's mostly obvious stuff. Occasionally though you read something and find it has practical applications, a good read anyway.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 24 Aug 2014
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
Very interesting, gives a realistic account of the true world of espionage, taking away the myths and glamour.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars MI6 huh ?, 1 Sep 2005
By 
Sam Jones "RoninExec" (Enghien les Bains France) - See all my reviews
This review is from: SPY: A Handbook (Paperback)
I had read "Kilo17", and was very surprised to find out about this book from Ferguson. Well, really, how much of an expert can he pretend to be, given he has barely spent a year or two with 6 ?
That's what he says in his first book, when he explains how he ended up assigned to HMCE.
Mind you the book content is not uninteresting, but nothing you can't find anywhere else through open sources. Which confirmed my impression of a very relative field "expertise" from the author.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

SPY: A Handbook
SPY: A Handbook by Harry Ferguson (Paperback - 4 Oct 2004)
£18.99
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews