Fear's Justice

Marc Olden, Author, Marc Clden, Author Villard Books $23 (0p) ISBN 978-0-679-44838-9
``In came the ethnics with their turbans, electronic stores, fried bananas and slitty eyes,'' complains Fear Meagher, the narrating cop-hero of Olden's (Kisaeng) latest thriller. Fear, an NYPD detective, doesn't stop there: ``to make up for what he'd done to their hair, God had given black guys big dicks.'' And so on. It demands much tolerance for readers to put up with these pervasive asides, but those who do will be caught up in a tense and muscular crime adventure as Fear takes on a gang of rogue cops who kill for hire. The detective enters the case after his married lover, also a cop, is murdered at Kennedy Airport, with a homeless black man as the likely culprit. A little sleuthing tells Fear that the suspect is being railroaded and that, behind the rush to judgment, lurk not only some unidentified political hotshots but also the dead woman's husband, a brilliant but sadistic fellow cop who vows revenge on Fear for the cuckolding. As Fear gets conned, manipulated by City Hall, beaten up and nearly killed in a series of suspenseful scenes, Olden has him rescue and bond with a radical black woman reporter whose life is jeopardized by her own digging into the case; but many readers may scorn this as a patent attempt to win sympathy for Fear, who might as well be called Mark Fuhrman. Olden lays down a hard-as-nails story that rings with savvy appraisal of halls of power and mean streets; his appraisal of readers' willingness to go the distance with his dedicated but hate-filled hero is more problematic. 30,000 first printing; film rights sold to Robert De Niro; author tour. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1996
Release date: 01/01/1996
Genre: Fiction
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