Dead South

Winona Sullivan, Author St. Martin's Press $21.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-312-13959-9
Sullivan, a former analyst for the CIA, portrays the organization as exceptionally inept in her second novel after A Sudden Death at the Norfolk Cafe. When agent Bradley Locke, vacationing in Miami, is abducted after too many drinks with a Panamanian national, the CIA hires PI/nun Sister Cecile Buddenbrooks to find their man. Cecile, who as a teenager infiltrated a spy ring for the organization, agrees and borrows the Miami condo of her lawyer, setting up a facade with 70-something Sister Raphael as representatives of their order in search of retirement property. The lawyer, who's in love with Cecile, gives her a shiny new Ferrari Testarossa, which impresses every man she Raphael meet, including Bradley's kidnappers. While Raphael tracks down a real estate deal, Cecile contacts the Miami CIA representative, who leads her to a killer who wants to make a deal. Meanwhile, the man who originally conscripted Cecile hopes to see her again and flies to Miami with his chicken-pox-infected daughter. Sullivan uses these odd ingredients to spoof CIA operations and agents, but her stilted prose and broad characterization weigh down her tale. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/29/1996
Release date: 02/01/1996
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 10 pages - 978-0-8041-1513-1
Analog Audio Cassette - 2 pages - 978-1-56431-190-0
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