Dinallo sets his second techno-thriller against the background of the 1986 U.S. air strike on Tripoli, presenting the raid as camouflage for a trade modeled on the Iran- contra affair. The CIA director and his collaborator, a rogue Air Force colonel, propose to deliver two F-111s to Quaddaffi in return for seven hostages in Palestinian hands. To keep the secret, the American pilots must be ``terminated.'' Captain Walter Shepherd survives, however, and the rest of the novel focuses on his efforts to recover his stolen plane. Dinallo sustains interest by integrating one subplot of betrayal and counter-betrayal among Muslim terrorists with another tracing the rescue of the hostages from a Syrian submarine. Readers may well be disturbed by the novel's affirmation of moral equality between the conspiracy's originators and its victims because of their common willingness to die in the service of their country. The author also fails to make credible the novel's premise of exchanging two state-of-the-art aircraft with top-secret electronics for only seven hostages. The concept remains no more than a plot device, failing to generate the suspension of disbelief essential to successful works in this genre. Reader's Digest Condensed Book Club selection. (June)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990 Release date: 01/01/1990 Genre:
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