Paul Eddy, Author G. P. Putnam's Sons $24.95 (338p) ISBN 978-0-399-14653-4
London investigative reporter Eddy, author of six nonfiction books (The Cocaine Wars; Hunting Marco Polo), tries his hand at fiction in this gripping, complex and highly plausible thriller. The novel crashes open like a cluster bomb with the protagonist, Grace Flint, a promising young English undercover cop, being brutally assaulted in a sensitive sting operation gone wrong. The sadist responsible for leaving her in a bloody heap, shady financier Frank Harling, vanishes without a trace, and Flint is left to heal, simmer and pick up the pieces. She stumbles across Harling's trail while on assignment with a joint British/American task force headed by a take-no-prisoners FBI agent named Cutter, who hunts international money launderers and has borrowed Flint from British intelligence to investigate a Caribbean bank. When a Learjet is bombed out of the sky, taking the banker and Cutter's number-two man with it, Flint figures Harling is behind the attack and launches her own investigation. Then she's plunged into a terrifying (and believable) conspiracy of rogue British and American spies who have been using the banker to shake down his criminal clients. As Flint pinpoints Harling, a sinister operative is dispatched to do her in. Brutal cloak-and-dagger games rage from the streets of Paris to the tense Turkish/Greek DMZ on Cyprus as rival intelligence agencies wage unsanctioned war against their own operatives. Flint is an engaging and thoroughly sympathetic heroine, wrestling her doubts and fears as she moves through an utterly amoral world. Eddy, who has written extensively for the London Times on political corruption, espionage and terrorism, keeps his story fast and seamless, expertly ratcheting up the tension in a breathlessly complex web of intrigue that keeps the reader guessing about loyalties and betrayals right up to the end. Mystery Guild featured selection; film rights to Columbia Pictures; foreign rights sold in the U.K., Germany, France, Holland, Norway, Italy and Israel. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 07/31/2000
Release date: 08/01/2000
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