Ringer

James Stewart Thayer, Author, James Stewart, Author Crown Publishers $18.95 (403p) ISBN 978-0-517-56970-2
This superior thriller that fantasizes tweaking the nose of Fidel Castro centers on his bitterest enemies, Miami's Cuban-American veterans of the Bay of Pigs fiasco. William Maurice is an ex-CIA agent who is still assuaging his guilt for his role in organizing the abortive invasion by doing charitable work with Cuban-American youth. Maurice maintains black market connections with contacts in Cuba. When the CIA's network on the Caribbean isle is swept up by G2, the Cuban secret police, and when the Soviets station bombers just 90 miles from Miami, the CIA asks its former agent to turn his Cuban contacts into a new network. Maurice begins preparing a covert action against the bomber threat, which is reminiscent of the Cuban Missile Crisis. His idea is to make use of a Cuban-American who is a dead ringer for Castro. In addition to being an expert raconteur, Thayer ( Pursuit ) displays a wealth of knowledge about Cuban culture and the Castro regime. His anti-Castro bias gives the book a polemical tone, however, and leads to an ending that stretches the imagination a bit too far. (September)
Reviewed on: 08/05/1988
Release date: 08/01/1988
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