Gayle Lynds
Born1945 (age 76–77)
Alma materUniversity of Iowa
  • Journalist
  • editor
  • author
Known forCo-founder of International Thriller Writers, Queen of Espionage Fiction
Spouse(s)Dennis Lynds, John C. Sheldon
Writing career
GenreThriller, spy fiction
Notable worksMasquerade

Gayle Lynds is an American former journalist, editor and author. Lynds is known as the Queen of Espionage Fiction for her spy fiction or spy thrillers novels. Lynds is the co-founder of International Thriller Writers.

Early life

In 1945, Lynds was born in Omaha, Nebraska. Lynds' father was an artist who worked on woods. Lynds grew up in Council Bluffs, Iowa.[1][2][3]


Lynds earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa.[2][4]


Lynds began her writing career as a newspaper journalist for the Arizona Republic in Phoenix, Arizona. Lynds was an editor at a government think tank, where she also acquired a Top Secret security clearance.[5][2][3]

Lynds' fiction career began with literary short stories published under her own name and several pulp fiction novels under male pseudonyms such as G.H. Stone, Gayle Stone, Nick Carter, and Don Pendleton.[1]

In 1996, Lynds' first novel Masquerade was published.[5] Lynds also wrote three novels in The Three Investigators, a YA mystery novel series. With Robert Ludlum, she created the Covert-One series and wrote three of the books.

In 2004, Lynds and David Morrell co-founded International Thriller Writers, Inc. and they became the first co-Presidents.[5][6]

Lynds is known as the Queen of Espionage Fiction.[5]

The Hades Factor, which she co-wrote with Robert Ludlum, was a CBS television miniseries in April 2006.

Personal life

Lynds' husband was Dennis Lynds, also a novelist. Lynds and her family lived in Santa Barbara, California. In August 2005, Lynds' husband Dennis Lynds died.[1][4]

In 2011 she married retired Maine district court judge John C. Sheldon. They lived near Portland.[7][1]

Lynds lives in Maine where she is a full-time novelist.


This is a partial list of novels by Lynds.


Covert-One series

This is a list of novels from the Covert-One series. Lynds co-wrote these novel with Robert Ludlum.




  1. ^ a b c d "Interview with Gayle Lynds - Queen of Espionage Fiction". August 8, 2016. Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c "Gayle Lynds". Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  3. ^ a b c Dunn, Matthew (October 20, 2010). "Gayle Lynds: "To Be A Writer, You Have To Want To Connect With The Reader"". Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  4. ^ a b c Kelley, Matt (May 31, 2006). "Iowa spy author tours country for latest book". Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h "Author Interview: Gayle Lynds". February 18, 2019. Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  6. ^ "S1E6: Gayle Lynds - Rising Above a Biased Industry". YouTube.
  7. ^ "About Us - Gayle Lynds". Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  8. ^ Vidich, Paul (February 1, 2021). "10 Spy Novels With Women Protagonists". Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  9. ^ a b c d "Awards - 2006 American Author Medal". 2006. Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  10. ^ "The Book of Spies by Gayle Lynds". September 18, 2012. Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  11. ^ "The Assassins by Gayle Lynds". Retrieved March 28, 2021.