Nobody Roots for Goliath: A Bomber Hanson Mystery

David Champion, Author
David Champion, Author Allen A. Knoll Publishers $22.95 (0p) ISBN 978-1-888310-44-3
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The echo of a recent news story about a tobacco company exec who blows the whistle on his former employer's nicotine-spiking adds a high note of topicality to an otherwise sludgy exercise. Appearing for the second time (after The Mountain Massacres) is ace trial lawyer Bomber Hanson, who looks and acts a lot like F. Lee Bailey and operates out of a California town that is equally reminiscent of Santa Barbara. Hanson represents a dying, blind Pennsylvania father of 12 painfully cute daughters who started smoking only after he lost his sight and couldn't read the warning labels on the packs. Bomber sends his son Tod to the hometown of Rich Zepf, Cedarburg, Pa., to size things up. A classical composer who'd rather be writing a fugue than digging up dirt, narrator Tod and his father engage in testy exchanges that palely suggest the relationship between Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin. But stretched out dialogue, some pedestrian prose and predictable plotting mar the route to the wrap-up courtroom drama. (June)
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