Pursuit

James Stewart Thayer, Author Random House Value Publishing $3.99 (404p) ISBN 978-0-517-55813-3
U.S. Secret Service agent John Wren is best known among his colleagues as the man who tied his wife's murderer to a desert cactus and left him to be devoured by coyotes. German WW II saboteur Capt. Kurt Monck has a similar reputation among his own forces, and this pair matches wits in a taut cat-and-mouse game across home-front America when Berlin orders Monck to escape from a Seattle POW camp in order to assassinate FDR. Wren finds a romantic incentive for the chase as well as a political one in Monck's reluctant accomplice, Margarete Bayerlein, a beautiful German widow whose daughter is being held captive pending completion of Monck's mission. The highlight of the novel is the fictional glimpse Thayer gives us of the liaison between FDR and the wealthy, well-born Lucy Mercer Rutherford. Thayer (The Hess Cross, The Earhart Betrayal) mixes romance, history and supense well, and while the Secret Service's leads in the case come a little too coincidentally, the tension and gruesome violence that permeate the tale are entirely credible. 50,000 first printing; $50,000 ad/promo. February 20
Reviewed on: 03/04/1986
Release date: 03/01/1986
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-446-34479-1
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