Angel, Archangel

Nick Cook, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (338p) ISBN 978-0-312-04322-3
Set in early 1945, this first novel by a Britsh aeronautics expert is a period technothriller. A cabal of Soviet officers is on the verge of launching Operation Archangel, an all-out offensive against not the Wehrmacht but Russia's Western allies. Exposing the plot may incite a new world war. Instead, a top British intelligence pilot, Rhodesian-born Peter Kruze, is sent into the heart of the Reich, directed to steal a German jet, the only plane with the capability to reach and destroy the conspirators' headquarters in a surgical strike. Cook has little fictional expertise; his characters are crudely drawn, and the plot does not invariably distinguish between red herrings and dead ends. The novel's air-combat sequences, however, are as gripping as any in the genre. The labyrinth of conspiracies and double-crosses keeps tension at high pitch. And the final episode incorporates a twist sure to evoke admiration from any reader who has ever wondered just how the Cold War got started. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
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