DARK GENIUS by Kevin McClung


A Child Prodigy in the Shadow of the CIA
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 Spellbinding autobiography of a child prodigy--gifted in the black arts of weaponry--who enters the shadow world of international-arms sales. Raised in the San Francisco Bay area in the late 60's, McClung was the son of an aeronautical engineering genius and gave early proof of his own prodigious grip on ``mechanix'' by secretly building a complex electric rifle when he was four. McClung was accepted by the Bay area's genius education program for ``Mentally Gifted Minors,'' whose special scientific projects were constantly sifted by the CIA for ideas--with the best projects (including McClung's vest for bugging and eavesdropping) stolen and passed on to CIA scientists. At 14, McClung met OSS-CIA master spy John Colling, who taught him the basics of spy-craft. Then falconer and top CIA assassin Ray Goodreau taught him about falconry and animal training, unconventional weapons, and commando tactics; McClung had already shaped his body into a lethal weapon through the martial arts. Goodreau also sharpened him into a remorseless anticommunist death-dealer. Eventually, McClung fell in with Marty Rhymer, a CIA wire-man, and Gabe Margolis, a boorish Mossad commando, who together had formed Amida Ltd., later a CIA secret business whose cover was selling weapons, uniforms and support gear to California law enforcement agencies but which quickly became a feast of international arms dealing. McClung refined a new Diplomat poison- tipped pen-gun, and, with his deadly book-gun (a copy of The Book of the Dead that fired bullets) and always accurate laser rifle, etc., etc. (diagrams for many of the weapons are given), became the company's chief inventor of killer ``toys.'' Then Ibriham Haddad, fat and perfumed king of arms dealers, invaded Amida and took it over, adding his own poison to Amida's already irredeemably corrupt juices. When Amida set up McClung to be assassinated, he hid out in the wilds for three years and abandoned dealing death downward from the top of the food chain. The rotten underbelly of US Intelligence, grippingly sliced open. Film rights sold.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1991
ISBN: 1-56129-142-0
Page count: 442pp
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 1991


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