Crux

Richard Aellen, Author Dutton Books $18.95 (344p) ISBN 978-1-55611-135-8
Aellen's second novel (after Redeye ), is a story of betrayal and revenge. During the Vietnam War, Keith Johnson witnesses the murder of a U.S. soldier. To silence him, three members of his own platoon frame him for drug possession. But before he can be tried, Johnson is captured by the North Vietnamese and becomes one of the ``forgotten'' POWs. He escapes 20 years later, determined to destroy the men who set him up. Although individual scenes are graphic and effective, especially a final confrontation at the Vietnam Memorial, Aellen fails to inspire credibility for key plot developments. Johnson is imprisoned under conditions reminiscent of The Count of Monte Cristo and The Man in the Iron Mask. He finances his vengeance by discovering a lost treasure, and acquires a Thai sidekick whose speech and behavior seem derived from old Charlie Chan movies. As the implausibilities pile up, melo drama overwhelms adventure. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1989
Release date: 10/01/1989
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-380-71200-7
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-930435-70-7
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-1-56100-064-7
MP3 CD - 978-1-4233-5851-0
MP3 CD - 978-1-4233-5852-7
MP3 CD - 978-1-5012-8613-1
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