Art of Darkness: Ingenious Performances by Undercover Operators, Con Men, and Others (Hardcover)
Just like Scheherazade, undercover agents talk to save their lives. If they put in a poor performance, they don't see the curtain rise again. ART OF DARKNESS pries open the virtuoso identity techniques practiced by undercover operatives, fugitives, disguise artists, pranksters, con artists, and federally protected witnesses. It draws on original interviews with undercover operators in order to show how identity artists on both sides of the law obtain fake ID, develop a disguise, build a cover story, maintain believability in street performances, and deal with threats to their identities-all without formal acting training. ART OF DARKNESS inhabits the grey areas of morality as it exposes identity roleplays at the borders of lawfulness. In it you'll find stories of: law-enforcement workers who adopt the techniques of criminals in order to catch them but somehow get caught up in their own trick identities; self-defined artists whose work also has a criminal dimension; criminal informants who masterfully play sides and roles against each other; and hoaxsters and impersonators who may perform trick identities primarily for gain but do so with tremendous inventiveness and a directorial consciousness. This book may explode any remaining notion you harbor that you are not at some level a member of the intelligence community, discerning who is "for real" and who is presenting a self for personal gain.