I-Spy: A Peep into the World of Spies is a classy non-fiction book by famous author Amit Bagaria who has written 10 books in quick succession and became popular among a certain section of readers of non-fiction books. In this book, the author has analysed the intelligence prowess of the countries that lead the world-order in terms of intelligence gathering and safeguarding one’s nation against internal and external threats by eliminating and marking the enemies. He has also discussed the basic qualities that are essential in someone who wants to become a successful spy and serve his or her nation. In terms of content, the book is certainly rich. It will provide the thrill that cannot be found in the books by short-time romance authors like Nikita Singh and likes of her.
It begins with the chapters on ABC of ‘spy’. The basics of a spy’s life – how does one become a spy, how does one become qualified to join intelligence services, what does a spy do after the retirement, and so on… Amit Bagaria has explained the things in details for the readers who are supposedly the ones with an interest in knowing more about spies and their services but with very elementary or no knowledge about these things. So, by reading the elementary chapter and also the abbreviations and vocabulary in the introductory section, any reader can prepare himself or herself to read the explanatory chapters based on the leading intelligence agencies of the world.
Before you read the chapters based on agencies like CIA, RAW, MI6 and others, be aware that the author has ranked these agencies according to his own understanding and assessment of the strength, powers, penetrating prowess, infiltration skills and political freedom. And according to the author’s assessment, he thinks that MI6 comes at the top and CIA comes at the second spot. Moreover, he has ranked the ISI above our agency, RAW, which is at number 9. These rankings by Amit Bagaria are something that one should be very careful before taking these at face value. A reader should read the arguments and data provided by Amit in details before believing the same and also utilising one’s own faculties of intellect.
Moreover, the book also offers the details of operations done by the various intelligence agencies in order to better understand their skills and ends. And one will be surprised to know about the operations carried by Indian agency RAW – in Bangladesh, Pakistan and many other countries as well. The longest and most-detailed chapter has been awarded to the CIA and deservedly so. Many other agencies that could not make it to Amit Bagaria’s top 20 in I-SPY: A Peep into the World of Spies have been put at the end of the book and basic details about them as well. However, many book review websites in India have pointed out that the book has not been offered with sources that could lead the curious readers to the treasure of secret notes…
To conclude the review, I will only say that the books may be read by the readers who are interested in knowing more and in-depth about the work profile of spies and their heroics as well as anti-heroics. The book has done extremely well to explain the workings of the leading intelligence agencies – also by adding data and images, the book creates a very visually attractive impact upon the minds of the readers. So, if you are thinking to read the non-fiction book that will offer you something other than usual motivation and intellectual exercise, Bagaria’s book will be the best choice for now! You can get a copy of the book from Amazon India by clicking the link below:
review by Ashwini for Active Reader book blog