Under/Cover Reviewer Guidelines
- If you would like to review a certain book for The Cipher Brief – please send an email to UnderCover proposing the assignment before submitting the review itself.
- We will not authorize you doing a review if the book’s author is a friend of yours
- We will not authorize you doing a review if the book’s author is an enemy of yours.
- Reviews should, in most cases, run between 600 and 1000 words in length.
- If you have some specific expertise that makes you especially well qualified to write that review – please make that clear both in your proposal to get the assignment and in the review itself.
- Reviews should assume that the readers are (at a minimum) well-read in national security issues and (quite often) experts themselves.
- We prefer to publish reviews books that are about to be published or have just been published. On occasion we will publish reviews of works that have been out for some time. If you see advance publicity for a forthcoming book and would like to read and review it – contact us and, if we have not yet assigned that book, we will contact the publisher and request an advance copy be sent to you for review purposes.
- If you have any conflicts of interest (e.g. the same publisher is about to put out a book that YOU wrote) please do not ask to review some other work they are publishing.
- If you have some APPARENT conflict of interest – but not a real one – please identify it in your draft.
- If you have a requirement to get your writings cleared by some federal government pre- publication review board – please obtain that clearance before submitting the review to us.
- No spoilers please. Tell the readers what the book is about – cite what is in it that makes the book noteworthy but don’t ruin the experience.
- Please keep your politics out of the review.
- If the book is similar to, better than, or less valuable than other books – let us know in the
context of the review
- We have a rating system of one to four “Trench Coats.” If you love the book – give it four trench coats. Hate it…give it one. Etc. We recognize this is subjective, but we value your opinion. We can split the difference…if it is somewhere between a three and a four…we can give it 3.5 trenchcoats.
- Note: The Under Cover site is behind The Cipher Brief’s paywall. After publication, however, we will give you a link to a PDF version of your review which you can share with others to let them see your published report.
- We are not able to offer financial compensation for reviews, but we are able to provide a complimentary subscription to The Cipher Brief for six months, oh and the added benefit of having your review read by The Cipher Brief’s many expert readers.
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Suzanne Kelly is CEO & Publisher of The Cipher Brief and most recently served as CNN`s Intelligence Correspondent before spending two years in the private sector. She also worked as an Executive Producer for CNN and as a news anchor at CNN International based in Berlin and Atlanta. In Berlin, she anchored a morning news program that was broadcast live in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and from Atlanta, she anchored a number of world news programs. She covered the NATO campaign in 1999 from Kosovo and Macedonia.
Brad Christian is Vice President of Operations at The Cipher Brief. Prior to joining TCB he spent over a decade in the private sector. He has executive leadership experience in operations management, sales, training and business development. Previously he served in numerous overseas posts providing critical support to USG operations as a member of an elite protective unit. Prior to entering the private sector, he served for 10 years in the US Military including service with the Rangers and Special Forces. He is a graduate of Georgia State University.
Kim Dozier is the Executive Editor of The Cipher Brief, and a CNN Global Affairs Analyst. She has covered intelligence and national security for The Associated Press and The Daily Beast, after 17 years as an award-winning CBS News foreign and national security correspondent. She held the 2014-2015 Gen. Omar Bradley Chair at the United States Army War College. A graduate of Wellesley College and UVA, she is a recipient of the Peabody Award, Edward R. Murrow Awards, and she was the first woman journalist recognized by the National Medal of Honor Society for her coverage of Iraq. She authored Breathing the Fire, about a devastating car bomb that hit a U.S. Army patrol and her CBS News team in Baghdad, Iraq in 2006.
Walter Pincus is a Columnist and the Senior National Security Reporter at The Cipher Brief. He spent forty years at The Washington Post, writing on topics from nuclear weapons to politics. In 2002, he and a team of Post reporters won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. He also won an Emmy in 1981 and the 2010 Arthur Ross Award from the American Academy for Diplomacy.
Bennett Seftel is the Director of Analysis at The Cipher Brief. He previously worked for the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade, at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs. Bennett received his BA in Arabic Language and International Studies from Washington University in St. Louis and his MA in International Law and Global Security from Georgetown University.
Levi Maxey is the Cyber and Technology Analyst at The Cipher Brief. He previously worked at the Stimson Center`s Managing Across Boundaries initiative in Washington D.C. as well as the Global Governance Institute`s Peace and Security Section in Brussels. Levi holds a Masters Degree from the Department of War Studies at Kings College London, focusing on international security in the digital age. He received a B.A. in International Studies from Roosevelt University in Chicago and studied European Peace and Security at Vesalius College in Brussels.
Brian Garrett-Glaser is the Content Manager at The Cipher Brief. Prior to joining the company, he worked as a Public Affairs Specialist at Schatz Publishing and received a B.A. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University.
Rogan Richer is the Event and Marketing Coordinator for The Cipher Brief. Prior to joining The Cipher Brief, he worked in an administrative role at an outpatient mental health facility as well as a business development associate at a Maryland based hazardous protection company. Rogan is an Old Dominion University graduate and received a B.A in Political Science concentrating in Terrorism and Counterterrorism with a minor in Military Leadership. Rogan was born in Amman, Jordan.