Born Under an Assumed Name

The Memoir of a Cold War Spy's Daughter

Rendezvous Info

Tickets: Free! No registration required.

Briefing

Join us at the International Spy Museum Store for an in-store book signing of Born under an Assumed Name by Sara Mansfield Taber.

SUMMARY

From literary journalist Sara Mansfield Taber, comes a deep and wondrous memoir of her exotic childhood as the daughter of a covert CIA operative. Born under an Assumed Name portrays the thrilling and confusing life of a girl growing up abroad in a world of secrecy and diplomacy, and the heavy toll it takes on her and her father. As Taber leads us on a tour through the alluring countries to which her father is assigned, we track two parallel stories: those of young Sara, and her Cold War spy father. Sara struggles for normalcy as the family is relocated to cities in North America, Europe, and Asia; and the constant upheaval eventually exacts its price. Only after a psychiatric hospitalization at age sixteen in a U.S. Air Force hospital with shell-shocked Vietnam War veterans, does she come to a clear sense of whom she is. Meanwhile, Sara's sweet-natured, philosophical father becomes increasingly disillusioned with his work, his agency, and his country. This is the question at the heart of this elegant and sophisticated work: what does it mean to be an American? In this fascinating, painful, and ultimately exhilarating coming-of-age story, young Sara confronts generosity, greatness, and tragedy. 

Back to Calendar