Lerza's Lives

John Danica, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (364p) ISBN 978-0-312-05976-7
The collaboration of Danica, a pseudonymous ex-marine and Freeman ( Our Wish to Kill ) yields a complicated, potentially intriguing thriller plot that is undone by cliched characters, dialogue and 1940s PI pulp diction. Vietnam hero Joseph Lerza of the Philadelphia FBI is recruited to go undercover on a case involving a war over the city's drug trade. Two factions of a Mafia family, one headed by Don Michael Amato and the other by rebellious Anthony Miceli, are separately negotiating with the Satans, a gang of devil-worshiping bikers led by the cunning Lu, a deserter known to Lerza in 'Nam. The FBI plan is for Lerza to pose as a cocaine distributor and sell drugs to Miceli. But Don Michael makes an ingenious deal with Lu to kill Miceli and then pin the murder on Lerza. His scheme is to trade his immunity for proof of Lerza's innocence. It's a shame that the crafty Don was not cast in the leading role and given better supporting players. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
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