This short but well-researched and well-written book adds to the existing literature about the origins of the Cold War national security state and about the link between international crisis and domestic surveillance. The book confirms previous portraits of FDR as a president with a somewhat relaxed view of civil liberties, and it shows compellingly how Hoover perfected the use of criminal investigations, launched to find evidence of unlawful activities and to gather, file, and disseminate political and other forms of noncriminal intelligence. It therefore fills a void in the scholarship on the FBI, which has tended to focus on the early political activities of the Bureau during World War I and the Red Scare of 1919-1920 or the Cold War era.
University of Chicago Press
Published and permitted by the Univeristy of Chicago Press: http://www.jstor.org/page/journal/amerhistrevi/about.html
The American Historical Review, Vol. 113, No. 4 (October 2008), pp. 1191-1192