The Dirty Tricks Department: Stanley Lovell, the Oss, and the Masterminds of World War II Secret Warfare

Product Details
$29.99  $27.89
St. Martin's Press
Publish Date
6.2 X 9.4 X 1.3 inches | 1.2 pounds

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About the Author
JOHN LISLE is a historian of science and the American intelligence community. He earned a Ph.D. in history from the University of Texas and has taught courses on U.S. history, cyberspace, and information warfare at the University of Texas, Louisiana Tech University, and Austin Community College. His writing has appeared in Scientific American, Smithsonian magazine, Skeptic, Journal of Intelligence History, and Physics in Perspective. The Dirty Tricks Department is his first book.

"This enjoyable, picaresque and sometimes alarming book offers another good reason for maintaining careful oversight over the intelligence services: Spy-scientists tend to go rogue when left to invent their own devices." --Ben Macintyre, New York Times

"In John Lisle's The Dirty Tricks Department, a darkly entertaining trawl through the outlandish exploits and misadventures of Lovell's "Department of Dirty Tricks," the spymasters of the O.S.S. treat the rules of war as minor annoyances." --Air Mail

"The Dirty Tricks Department is a fascinating tale vividly told, full of sabotage and skullduggery, deviousness and invention, and populated by a cast of remarkable characters. James Bond meets Sherlock Holmes--but in deadly serious real life." --H.W. Brands, New York Times bestselling author of the Pulitzer Prize finalists Traitor to His Class and The First American

"The Dirty Tricks Department is the best book about the OSS I've ever read. It's also one of the finest intelligence histories in recent years. Terrific research, razor-sharp writing, and a scintillating cast of characters--heroes, weirdos, con men, mad scientists--make this a must-read for anyone interested in the dark arts of espionage and secret warfare." --Tim Weiner, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award, and author of the bestselling history of the CIA Legacy of Ashes

"[A] knowledgeable and entertaining study ... Lisle stuffs the account with bizarre inventions, humorous anecdotes, and vivid sketches of researchers and agents. Espionage buffs will be enthralled." --Publishers Weekly

"[A] fascinating story ... With careful research and a dry wit, Lisle finds much to say about the backroom war. A page-turning account of the scientists, inventors, and eccentrics of the OSS in a critical period of conflict." --Kirkus Reviews

"Lisle has composed an absolutely engaging chronicle of the founding and WWII heyday of the OSS, the precursor of today's CIA ... How it all got started ... is endlessly fascinating." --Booklist