WITH HONOR AND PURPOSE by Phil Kerby

WITH HONOR AND PURPOSE

A Leading FBI Investigator Reports from the Frontlines of Crime

KIRKUS REVIEW

A retired FBI field commander reports on his quarter-century with the bureau.

Kerby joined the FBI in 1969 and was delighted by the princely salary of $11,626 and the opportunity to serve justice. He romanticizes the good old days to a certain extent. But he was a committed G-man, and devoted his life to solving bank robberies and busting up prostitution rings—crimes he thinks seem too small-time for FBI agents today. His early days at the Albany bureau were marked by several errors, such as the time he and a few other agents stopped a bank robbery by forming a circle around the would-be thieves and pointing their guns—they would have ended up shooting one another. These days, writes Kerby, agents form an L around a suspect. Kerby is still incensed about Dog Ferguson, a big-shot pimp who liked to revisit his high school in Columbus, Ohio, with his best-looking girls draped on his arms. It drove Kerby to distraction that other agents let the pimp be, and he made catching the slippery Dog his top priority. Kerby’s instincts were correct. Dog had contacts across the continent and was discovered to be among the most powerful pimps in the country. Dog also had many Ohio State University coeds on his payroll. Just days after one of his retired girls was seen talking to Kerby, she had a mysterious and fatal fall down her stairs. One of Kerby’s sweetest moments was watching Dog go to jail. While short on the blockbuster crime-busting of other FBI memoirs, this book is full of intriguing details—like the undercover agent who developed such a craving for bologna that he gained 60 pounds while on assignment—that bring the FBI to life.

An intelligent and welcome addition to a somewhat overloaded shelf.

Pub Date: April 27th, 1998
ISBN: 0-312-18224-4
Page count: 336pp
Publisher: St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 1998




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