Monday, February 21, 2005

Material Witness by Mark Agee

"Material Witness" by Mark Agee, Shred of Evidence, February 2005

This story takes place a few weeks after 9/11. The main character, Forrest Warner, is an ex-FBI agent who left the Bureau under a cloud and now works for a tabloid-type TV show called Certain Justice.

As the story opens, Warner feels as if he is being watched. Turns out he is correct. He is pulled in by an FBI surveillance team lead by Special Agent Bill Elgin, an old enemy. Warner was pulled in as a material witness on the orders of Assistant Special Agent In Charge Susan Reddington. She is running an operation to capture a man named Tony Abouzeki. Tony is supposed to have connections through his brother, a physician in Lebanon, to Hezboullah. Tony said he would turn himself in but only if Warner was there. While Warner was still with the FBI he had busted Tony for wire fraud, and has had dealings with him while with Certain Justice.

Warner agrees to help, but is still suspicious. The Bureau's Office of Professional Responsibility has been trying to get him on something for years. Also he doesn't trust Elgin or Reddington. He keeps trying to figure out the real reason they came to him and how he can stay out of their clutches.

This is a longish story, and it needs to be with all the crossing and double-crossing and suspicion. Warner's suspicions and the Byzantine plans to bring in Abouzeki keep the suspense high. There's a good shoot-em-up conclusion and a final-act revelation that Warner's been part of an operation that he didn't even know about.

The story is well-written and kept my interest up throughout the long build-up.

In short, I'm keeping an eye out for Mr. Agee's next story.


At 2:35 PM, Blogger Candace said...

Hi Bob, I agree. Mr. Agee is a good writer that managed to hold my attention. He keeps up the pace and overall atmosphere; I will definitely keep my eye out for more stories from him.

At 2:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is an Agee story in the archives of Plots with Guns.

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