The Snatch

David Champion, Author Allen A. Knoll Publishers $19.95 (266p) ISBN 978-0-9627297-2-0
Champion, a freelance L.A. journalist who claims to be a ``police department insider,'' may have murder, mayhem and Thompsonesque noir in mind, but his clueless cops-and-robbers tale reads instead like an effort to set a new Guinness Book record for non-stop cliches. (The book's opening sentence, in fact, offers a prime example: ``The bridges of San Francisco framed the town like sleeping sentries: inert but implacable.'') Harry Schlacter, a hard-boiled Dirty Harry clone, falls in love with Lela Eberhart, daughter of LAPD Internal Affairs paper-pusher Frank Eberhart, who's forced to suspend Schlacter for his cavalier use of weaponry. When Lela is kidnapped by an L.A. gang that has it in for Harry, the maverick cop-turned-gumshoe engineers his own rescue effort, tracking the thugs to a remote mountain shack where they're holding the girl hostage. Stock characters, a predictable plot and stilted, overwrought prose contribute equally to the downfall of this lackluster debut. (July)
Reviewed on: 07/04/1994
Release date: 07/01/1994
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