I haven’t had any formal cryptology or cryptanalysis trainin’ so I’ve had to make do with teh internets and good ole books.  Here’s what I’ve read so far and a little blurb that may help you decide if you want to read them as well.  At this point I haven’t actually gotten my hand on an actual textbook yet so these are the best an amateur or hobbyist can get relatively easy.

I’ve read a few crypto books and by far the best is The Code Book by Simon Singh.  I won’t even review it because it needs no review.  Go to the library or bookstore and get it if you haven’t already.  Most other crypto books re-hash similar topics so save some time and get the best.  It was written in 1999 so there may be something newer but the treatment given by Mr. Singh as fantastic and is worth the risk that it might be a little dated.  Until the invention of a functioning quantum computer it is doubtful that DES and RSA will be replaced so I wouldn’t worry.

“Where were we at, at that point in history, when Kryptos was installed?  How did we get there? What came after?  That’s the point of reading these things.”

Burn After Reading by Ladislas Farago

Code Breaking by Rudolf Kippenhahn

Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson

Spycatcher by Peter Wright

The Secret Services Handbook by Michael Bradley

Windtalkers by Max Allan Collins

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

Angels and Demons by Dan Brown

The Art of Intelligence by Henry Crumpton

The Real CIA by Lyman Kirkpatrick

The Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons

The Central Intelligence Agency:  Problems of Secrecy in a Democracy edited by Young Hum Kim

Uncloaking the CIA edited by Howard Frazier

Broken Seals with an intro by John Ashbrook and afterword by Daniel Graham

Spies, Lies and the War on Terror by Paul Todd, Jonathan Bloch and Patrick Fitzgerald

James Jesus Angleton, the CIA and the Craft of Counterintelligence by Michael Holzman

The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler

Flawed Patriot by Bayard Stockton

The Gulf War Will Not Take Place by Jean Baudrillard

The Gulf War: Is It Really Taking Place? by Jean Baudrillard

The Gulf War Did Not Take Place by Jean Baudrillard

American Hero by Larry Beinhart

La guerre de Troie n’aura pas lieu by Jean Giraudoux

The Brotherhood of the Rose by David Morrell

The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence by Victor Marchetti and John Marks

Burn Before Reading by Admiral Stansfield Turner

Intelligence in an Insecure World by Peter Gill and Mark Phythian

Fashionable Nonsense by Alan Sokal and Jean Bricmont

Digital Fortress by Dan Brown

The Discovery of the Tomb of Tutankhamen by Howard Carter and A.C. Mace

New Lies for Old by Anatoliy Golitsyn

“…as long as official histories are written for official purposes, we will need secret histories–not that the latter, any more than the former, reveal “what really happened,” but because they can sometimes tell us what else happened and add something to our understanding of the motivations of individuals, as well as the reasons of state, that contributed to the events of the time.”  -Michael Holzman