In this entertaining memoir, Lillian McCloy shares her experiences as the wife of an undercover CIA officer, moving their family to Spain, India, Japan, and Venezuela during the Cold War. The book is written as a series of short and personal anecdotes, which are at turns illuminating, funny, touching, and outrageous. McCloy describes her approach to writing the book as if she was sharing her stories with a good friend in a personal letter, or over cocktails.
"A charming and unusual portrait of the secret life" - JOHN LE CARRE´, author of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
"It’s charming, often troubling, and sometimes hilarious and is altogether a fascinating read"- BERKELEYSIDE Book Review
“We’ve all read the romanticized accounts of a CIA officer’s life overseas. Rarely do we ever get to read about the spy’s family. Six Car Lengths Behind an Elephant by Lillian McCloy is an engrossing, decades-long memoir of foreign life under deep cover for the CIA. McCloy reveals the intrigue, danger, and humor of clandestine life in her thoroughly entertaining account of a CIA family’s nomadic lifestyle. Few living in the U.S. will ever encounter the unique trials and tribulations of the McCloy family, but what a fascinating read it is!” - ALAN B. TRABUE, CIA (Ret.), author of A Life of Lies and Spies
"McCloy is a brilliant storyteller, sharing honest emotions without becoming sentimental. Her husband's new assignments required learning to live in new and diverse cultures and often created palpable tension. Sometimes I had to remind myself this is not a novel, it's Lillian's life. Wow!" - STORY CIRCLE BOOK REVIEWS
“If you’re married to a spy, the always fraught arena of a relationship turns into a positive minefield. What does that all-night absence mean? What can you begin to say to the kids? In Six Car Lengths Behind an Elephant, Lillian McCloy gives us the story of a life spent around secret intelligence that is funny and charming and in every wonderful sense, deeply spooky.” - PICO IYER, author of The Art of Stillness and Video Night in Kathmandu