×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

The Director: A Novel
     

The Director: A Novel

3.3 12
by David Ignatius
 

See All Formats & Editions

In David Ignatius’s gripping new novel,
spies don’t bother to steal information . . .
they change it, permanently and invisibly.

Graham Huber has been director of the
CIA for less than a week when a Swiss kid in a dirty T-shirt walks into the
American consulate in Hamburg and says the agency has been hacked, and he has a

Overview

In David Ignatius’s gripping new novel,
spies don’t bother to steal information . . .
they change it, permanently and invisibly.

Graham Huber has been director of the
CIA for less than a week when a Swiss kid in a dirty T-shirt walks into the
American consulate in Hamburg and says the agency has been hacked, and he has a list of agents’ names to prove it. This is the moment a CIA director most dreads.

Huber isn’t sure where to turn until he meets a charismatic
(and unstable) young man named James Morris who runs the Internet Operations Center. He’s the CIA’s in-house geek. Huber launches Morris on a mole hunt unlike anything in spy fiction—one that takes the reader into the hacker underground of Europe and America and ends up in a landscape of paranoia and betrayal.
Like the new world of cyber-espionage from which it’s drawn, The Director is a maze of deception and double-dealing—
about a world where everything is written in zeroes and ones and nothing can be trusted.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times - Michiko Kakutani
…an entertaining, high-tech ride, full of theme park pyrotechnics and more substantial pleasures. As in his previous thrillers, Mr. Ignatius…injects the plot with his wide-ranging knowledge of history, geopolitics and national security issues, while giving the reader an intimate sense of the tradecraft employed by his characters…The Director leaves the reader with a keenly observed portrait of the C.I.A. as a "Rubik's Cube of interlocking" intrigue in a world in which both the watchers and the watched are always under surveillance.
Publishers Weekly
★ 03/31/2014
In this frighteningly convincing spy thriller from Ignatius (Bloodmoney), former entrepreneur Graham Weber has a new job: director of the Central Intelligence Agency, an organization suffering in “the post-Snowden era” of whistle-blowers and cyberterrorism. During Weber’s first week on the job, Rudolf Biel walks into the U.S. consulate in Hamburg, Germany, and tells base chief K.J. “Kitten” Sandoval that “your messages can be read.” Weber sends his brilliant technologist, James Morris, director of the agency’s Information Operations Center, to Germany to meet with Biel, but Biel is shot and killed before he can be interviewed. The action revolves around the source of the leak Biel identified, which turns into a plot to hack and destroy the Bank of International Settlements. Why this bank? “Because it’s a symbol of everything that has gone wrong since 1945.” Ignatius builds palpable momentum and creates engaging, fully human characters, notably the fallible and conscientious Weber. Moreover, he writes with great authority on hackers’ technologies and motivations, as well as the history and culture of the CIA. Agent: Raphael Sagalyn, Sagalyn/ICM. (June)
Starred Review Booklist
“Ignatius has given readers another compelling and enlightening look at what might happen next month. Must-read twenty-first-century espionage fiction.”
Foreign Policy Magazine
“A lively read.”
James Fallows - The Atlantic
“David Ignatius’s novels have always been a clef in the best sense: closely connected to, and very revealing and insightful about, the trends and tensions in the news… [A] page-turning read.”
Daily Mail (UK)
“Ignatius uses all his Washington insider experience to give his story its sharp authenticity.”
Bob Woodward - Politico
“If you think cybercrime and potential worldwide banking meltdown is a fiction, read this sensational thriller and reconsider any investing strategy you might have.”
Michiko Kakutani - The New York Times
“An entertaining, high-tech ride, full of theme park pyrotechnics and more substantial pleasures. As in his previous thrillers, Mr. Ignatius…injects the plot with his wide-ranging knowledge of history, geopolitics and national security issues, while giving the reader an intimate sense of the tradecraft employed by his characters.”
Library Journal
10/01/2015
The longtime columnist for the Washington Post wrings suspense from the growing threat of cyberespionage with this tale of a reform-minded CIA director who learns that the agency has been hacked. It isn't long before he begins to suspect the computing whiz kid he hired to fight the hack, who may be running a nefarious cyberoperation of his own. (LJ 4/15/14)
Kirkus Reviews
2014-04-03
Washington Post columnist and best-selling novelist Ignatius, whose deep knowledge of the intelligence field gives his fiction unique credibility, once again turns to the CIA in a story inspired by the recent exploits of leaker Edward Snowden. New CIA director Graham Weber meets James Morris at a Las Vegas convention. Morris, the head of the CIA's Information Operations, isn't the usual company man; he's a mysterious loner who colors outside the lines. When a young hacker shows up at the U. S. consulate in Hamburg offering to turn over valuable information, Weber dispatches Morris to find him. Soon, however, the new director is enmeshed in an operation that has gone south. Not only does the hacker end up dead, his claims that the CIA's been hacked ring perilously true. But that's not the only challenge facing Weber: His own operative, Morris, appears to be involved in some shadowy Black Ops with other intelligence agencies, as well as a hidden friendship with someone hellbent on destroying the intelligence community. As a writer, Ignatius doesn't know how to tell a bad story. His unparalleled understanding of the intelligence world propels his work so far above others who dabble in the field that there's little comparison. But in this case, he leans much too heavily on the technical side of the story, turning even his usual deft plotting and sharply drawn characters into afterthoughts mired in an ocean of technical computer-speak. Instead of high-stakes excitement, the intricate explanations of how hackers work, replete with step-by-step instructions, overtake and, eventually, overwhelm the simmer of danger that usually lingers just beneath the surface of his work. Although the subject is timely, Ignatius wades too far into the mechanics of malicious computer use to make this a compelling tale; he turns an exciting idea into a story that fails under the weight of dull and irrelevant detail.
Brad Thor
“Another brilliant thriller from the Dean of International Intrigue. Deception, deceit, and dishonor—The Director doesn't let up and absolutely doesn't disappoint! I loved this book!”
Brad Meltzer
“The best part of The Director is watching Ignatius grab the history of American intelligence and use it to divine our technological future. Here's your chance to see inside the CIA. Sculpted with an insider's eye, The Director shows you real people, real espionage, and the real threats to our national security.”
Mary Ann Gwinn - Seattle Times
“One of his best…Ignatius has a gift for portraying the soldiers of the CIA bureaucracy in all their ambition, heroism and pettiness, and what he suggests about the nation's cybersecurity will keep you up at night.”
Wall Street Journal
“A savvy, engaging tale in which the technology and tradecraft are as interesting as the characters.”
Michiko Kakutani - New York Times
“An entertaining, high-tech ride, full of…pyrotechnics and more substantial pleasures.”
James Fallows - Atlantic
“David Ignatius’s novels have always been a clef in the best sense: closely connected to, and very revealing and insightful about, the trends and tensions in the news…[A] page-turning read.”
Philip Kerr - Washington Post
“The best spy novel I've read since John le Carré's Smiley's People…I now intend to read everything that Ignatius has ever written.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393078145
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
06/02/2014
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
1,267,011
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

David Ignatius, a prize-winning columnist for the Washington Post, has been covering the Middle East and the CIA for more than twenty-five years. He lives in Washington, DC.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

The Director 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found this cyber-thriller very entertaining & chillingly plausible. I think the low ratings given by others are unfair. -- catwak
webspelunker More than 1 year ago
Let's just say that David Ignatius is no John Le Carre! While I have considerable respect for his journalistic skills and make a point of listening to him when he's on TV, this book was a disappointment. I learned of it from one of Ignatius's TV interviews and I was intrigued by the plot. The premise was good the execution was not. Characters are cardboard and stereotypes of a type that I thought went out with disco. Their motivations appear contradictory. (Although, if this is what DC is really like, and the author should know, then this goes a long way to explaining what's going on inside the Beltway!) The last several chapters appear rushed as if Ignatius had to get done before going somewhere. I felt that the plot was illogical in places. I haven't read any of his other works and maybe they're better. I'll try another to see. But, I wouldn't recommend anyone else to start reading this author's works with this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Brodk More than 1 year ago
I am not sure how to review this. Ignatius obviously knows his subject, and he creates characters that dramatize the issues surrounding hacking in the intelligence community. I really liked his "Body of Lies", but this one falls flat. The characters are not real, somehow, and this affects everything else. I stopped reading in the middle so maybe it does get better, but I didn't have the energy to find out.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another great read from  Ignatius, couldn't put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Feel ripped off. $12.99 and all pages are blank. I am going back to kindle