Free Book Talks


October 20, 2019
Hall of Mirrors (Virginia Hall: America's Greatest Spy of World War II); 1:30 p.m

About the book: Hall of Mirrors is the story of Virginia Hall-a former State Department clerk who, after losing her leg in a hunting accident, suffered discrimination, quit and was recruited to become the Allies’ first spy to live behind the lines in WW II France. She organized resistance groups, conducted sabotage operations, and reported secret intelligence back to the Allies. Eventually betrayed, Hall escaped the Gestapo’s Klaus Barbie (the "Butcher of Lyon") by crossing the snow-capped Pyrenees, dragging her prosthetic limb behind her. Despite her harrowing escape, Virginia demanded to return to France. Her spymasters refused, telling her it was a suicide mission. But Virginia ignored the dangers-certain capture, horrible torture, a painful death-and returned to France on the eve of the D-Day invasion.

About the Author: Craig Gralley joined the Central Intelligence Agency and over the course of his career, he's served as a senior officer in most of the agency's directorates--including a stint as Chief Speechwriter for three CIA directors. With graduate degrees from Georgetown University (Government) and Johns Hopkins (Writing), Craig is now a freelance writer and author focused on the inspiring stories of quiet heroes.