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The Coldest Warrior

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  33 ratings  ·  8 reviews
In 1953, at the end of the Korean War, Dr. Charles Wilson, an Army bio-weapons scientist, died when he “jumped or fell” from the ninth floor of a Washington hotel. As his wife and children grieve, the details of his death remain buried for twenty-two years.

With the release of the Rockefeller Commission report on illegal CIA activities in 1975, LSD is linked to Wilson’s
Hardcover, 216 pages
Published February 4th 2020 by Pegasus Books
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Paul Vidich's historical cold war espionage drama is a compulsive and tense thriller that is based on a true story to which he has personal family connections. In the midst of the height of the paranoia of the cold war in 1953, Dr Charles Wilson either falls or jumps off the ninth floor to his death at the Harrington Hotel in Washington, leaving behind a grieving wife and family. The truth is buried until 22 years later, the Rockefeller Commission are reporting on and holding hearings on illegal ...more
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fascinating blend of historical fact and fiction which documents the cover up of the death of a US Army scientist working for the CIA. In 1953, Dr. Charles Wilson was alleged to have committed suicide, jumping or falling from the window of a Washington D.C. hotel, but the exact details of his death are unknown.
Fast forward to 1975 and the Rockefeller Commission report on on illegal CIA activities reveals that, prior to his death, Wilson had - unknown to him - been given a dose of LSD. Wilson
Greville Waterman
Dec 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the third thriller I have read by this underrated author and it is an excellent cold war thriller partially based on true events.

I won't provide any spoilers but simply say that Vidich is a master of time and place and he brilliantly evokes America in the 1950s as a cold case from that period is re-examined and a cover up exposed.

The characters are well drawn and credible and the plot engrossing. Vidich is a gifted writer and his talent shines through.

Highly recommended.
miss.mesmerized mesmerized
1953 – the Korean War has ended, but the Cold War emerges and the intelligence services’ nerves are frayed. When CIA officer Dr Charles Wilson dies under blurry circumstances, all information is closed down immediately. It will take twenty-two years until his death gets the attention it deserves. He “jumped or fell” from the ninth floor of a Washington hotel and his family is now demanding answers. Jack Gabriel, an old friend of Wilson’s, also an agent himself, starts digging and the deeper he ...more
Michael Martz
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: best-of-year
"The Coldest Warrior", the latest thriller from Paul Vidich, is fiction based on the true story of a CIA episode back in the 50's where one of their scientists who 'knew too much' was dosed up on LSD and 'later committed suicide' by jumping from a 9th floor window in a hotel. That was the original official story, which stayed official until an investigation a couple decades later opened a giant can of worms. Jack Gabriel, a friend of the dead scientist and on his way out of the CIA, is kept on ...more
Paul Vidich
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
This novel holds a special place among literary spy novels for me, but then I am biased.
John Johnstone
Jan 12, 2020 rated it liked it
A CIA story based on a true story of cover up. When ever the CIA is mentioned you always picture the worst. Spying missions and assassinations immediately spring to mind with a liberal dose of foreign despots. The despots are not in this story however something equally despicable is, the US Government is conducting drug experiments on their own, but who? Jack Gabriel is suspicious and starts to investigate and build a case. I guess as this is based on true events the author has given himself a ...more
Feb 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written. A bit slow moving except for the last few chapters. Captured a little bit of Smileys cold war melancholy. recommend it
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PAUL VIDICH is the acclaimed author of The Coldest Warrior (2020), An Honorable Man (2016) and The Good Assassin (2017), and his fiction and nonfiction have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, LitHub, CrimeReads, Fugue, The Nation, Narrative Magazine, and others. He lives in New York.

A Publishers Weekly Top 10 Mystery/Thriller Pick for Spring 2020

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