Author Stories Podcast Episode 1048 | Paul Vidich Interview
Today’s author interview guest is Paul Vidich, author of The Mercenary.
Moscow, 1985. The Soviet Union and its communist regime are in the last stages of decline, but remain opaque to the rest of the world—and still very dangerous. In this ever-shifting landscape, a senior KGB officer—code name GAMBIT—has approached the CIA Moscow Station chief with top secret military weapons intelligence and asked to be exfiltrated. GAMBIT demands that his handler be a former CIA officer, Alex Garin, a former KGB officer who defected to the American side.
The CIA had never successfully exfiltrated a KGB officer from Moscow, and the top brass do not trust Garin. But they have no other options: GAMBIT’s secrets could be the deciding factor in the Cold War.
Garin is able to gain the trust of GAMBIT, but remains an enigma. Is he a mercenary acting in self-interest or are there deeper secrets from his past that would explain where his loyalties truly lie? As the date nears for GAMBIT’s exfiltration, and with the walls closing in on both of them, Garin begins a relationship with a Russian agent and sets into motion a plan that could compromise everything.
Paul Vidich was a senior executive in the entertainment industry for over twenty years. After leaving his business career he turned to writing full time. His first novel, An Honorable Man, a Publisher’s Weekly top 10 Mystery and Thriller in 2016, was followed by The Good Assassin. The Coldest Warrior is his third novel. His essays and nonfiction have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Lithub, The Nation, CrimeReads, and elsewhere.