RARA-AVIS: Paul Lindsay

From: JIM DOHERTY ( jimdohertyjr@yahoo.com)
Date: 20 Sep 2002

After a tour as a USMC infantry officer in Viet Nam, Chicagoan Paul Lindsay returned to the States and immediately entered the FBI, where he spent the next two decades. He's written five novels based on his experiences as a federal agent.

The first three books feature Mike Devlin, a Chicagoan working as a "brick agent" (a street-level investigator) in the Bureau's Detroit field office
(where Lindsay himself was stationed for many years). Lindsay was something of a specialist in serial killer cases, and all of the Devlin books pit Devlin against some sort of serial killer. WITNESS TO THE TRUTH has Devlin and his partner trying to track down a kidnapper who is holding a brother agent's daughter captive; the kidnapper's MO is similar to that of a serial killer Devlin tried to catach some months earlier in another city. OPERATION GENTKILL has Devlin trying to track down a killer who's stalking FBI agents. And my favorite of the trilogy, FREEDOM TO KILL, features a villain who uses modern-day technology to commit serial murders on a massive scale, sort of a Unabomber on steroids.

Throughout the Devlin books, the hero rails against the "bureaucratization" of the FBI, the back-stabbing
"careerism" of management-level agents, and an agency culture that cares more about avoiding failure than actually solving crimes. Devlin emerges as what one critic calls "an FBI poster child for insubordination."

Lindsay has also written two non-series (so far) FBI novels, THE FUHRER'S RESERVE and the upcoming TRAPS.


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