In his book, Gray Day: My Undercover Mission to Expose America’s First Cyber Spy, Eric O’Neill chronicles his part in the quest to take down the worst Russian mole in U.S. History, Robert Philip Hanssen. Hanssen, an FBI agent who is suspected of spying for the Kremlin for nearly two decades, is set to retire in three months. The Agency has tasked O’Neill with shadowing and gathering evidence to convict Hanssen of espionage. O’Neill tells of the cat-and-mouse game employed to corner and apprehend the canny and diabolical spy that cost the U.S. in intelligence and lives.
Gray Day is a well-written account of secrecy, subterfuge, and suspicion, and O’Neill gives an inside look at the operational detail of one of the most daring and intriguing cases in FBI history. It is an enlightening and informative look at the depravity and hubris of human nature as law enforcement endeavors to entrap one of their own. O’Neill opens up about the toll that the case took on his personal life as well as his professional life. The narrative is both exciting and frustrating, as one of the worst traitors in history is able to elude capture for so long and is finally made to face justice.
Aside from a dense last chapter about cyber-security and a few expletives, Gray Day is a page-turning, tension-building journey into the world of covert espionage. I highly recommend it.