A pity Block doesn't write for the movies. There's a great little B movie here. First published in 1968, this is a reissue of the fifth book in the series featuring Evan Tanner, "whose sleep center was destroyed in Korea" but who remains "not merely conscious but energetically and productively awake 24 hours a day." It reflects its era of anti-war protests and violent political activism. Tanner is a jack-of-all-spycraft, member of (almost all) subversive groups; a man of many guises who hops, skips and parachutes around the globe on errands from those who wag the dog. "The Chief" has asked him this round to investigate the Cuban Pavilion at the Montreal Expo. Rumor has it that the Cubans are using it for something nasty, which proves to be an understatement, indeed. The first nasty thing Tanner observes at the fair is the kidnapping of his daughter, Mina. He is unable to go to the Mounties, since they kicked him out of the country as a suspected terrorist when he first arrived and are now hunting him for sneaking back in. He turns for help to some Quebec nationalists, especially a bright and beautiful young woman named Arlette, who has a problem of her own. The more militant of her group want to blow up the Queen of England on her state visit to the fair. Naturally, she and Tanner team up to sort out the Cuban plot, rescue Mina and frustrate the militants, all with a dazzling display of wit and skill. Like most of Block's books, this is full of humor and high spirits, a treat for established fans and new readers alike. (Sept. 10)
Forecast:Based on the performance of past books in this deluxe reprint series, expect a sell-out.