Jim Wygant takes us back in The Spy's Demise to a time when worry and fear were the daily meal of the day. The two largest superpowers fought for supremacy trying at all costs to outdo the other. He has introduced a plot, one that could have very well played out in this time in history. Valery, now known as George, has worked and believed in the KGB his entire career. In the novel you follow the trail of an Ex-KGB spy and learn about him, not as a product of the Soviet Union but as a man. He is initially almost invisible, not much of a personality, but as the story unfolds his personality changes and he grows stronger. As he begins to use his background to unlock the secrets of the Badger, he again takes on the role of a spy. His entire goal now is to flush out this mole to save his own life, and to close a channel that is long past due. He uses his new resources in the FBI and the Police more as a sounding board, having difficulty getting anyone to believe him.
The plots and plans he puts together are cagey and imaginative, but he is in a new country on his own, going up against a top government official. His life is in danger at every turn. You have to admire his tenacity, and hope that he makes it though.
I enjoyed The Spy's Demise, though it started out slow for me. The beginning was filled with a great deal of detail, but as soon as George left Russia, I began to get interested in what he was doing and where he was going. As he grew and gained more character the book just took off, keeping the pace tight and fast.
This would be a great book for a book club, riddled as it is with information about a time in history that most Americans are very familiar with.