Title: The Red Cell
Author: Andre Le Gallo
Le Gallo, Andre (2014). The Red Cell. Mountain Lake Press
Date Posted: April 21, 2015
Reviewed by Hayden B. Peake
Andre Le Gallo’s latest novel, The Red Cell, is distinguished first by a foreword written by a CIA colleague and former deputy director of operations, Thomas Twetten, who explains Andre’s unusual credentials as a CIA case officer. Second, one of the characters in the book battles ALS, a disease Le Gallo himself knows firsthand. And third, it is an exciting story well told.
Following a thematic thread established in his two previous novels, The Caliphate and Satan’s Spy, protagonists Steve Church and his fiancée, Kella Hastings, struggle to foil Iranian Islamic terrorists. Their leader seeks revenge against Church personally, the result of previous encounters, and the United States in general, especially its economy. The story begins in Washington, DC, but soon expands to Europe and to San Francisco. Along the way, Le Gallo provides realistic descriptions of terrorists, agents, and moles seeking to accomplish their missions while pursued by a team assembled by Church and Hastings.
National Clandestine Service officers are well known for their storytelling gifts, but few are able to write espionage stories that are realistic, clever, and entertaining. Le Gallo is one of those few and has done it again with The Red Cell. It is enjoyable reading but only available in digital form from Amazon Kindle or from Mountain Lake Press at http://mountainlakepress.com/.
 Hayden B. Peake in the Intelligencer (21, 1, Winter 2014-15, p. 136). Hayden Peake is the Curator of the CIA’s Historical Intelligence Collection. He has served in the Directorate of Science and Technology and the Directorate of Operations. Most of these reviews appeared in recent unclassified editions of CIA’s Studies in Intelligence. These and many other reviews and articles may be found on line at http://www.cia,gov.