cover image Sweepers: A Novel of Suspense

Sweepers: A Novel of Suspense

Peter T. Deutermann. St. Martin's Press, $23.95 (322pp) ISBN 978-0-312-15669-5

Set mostly in sheltered, affluent Virginia but reaching back to the war in Vietnam, Deuterman's (Official Privilege) latest military detective thriller pits a freshly minted admiral against a ruthless Navy SEAL intent on revenge for an act committed 30 years ago. When a Reston, Va., woman is found dead, suspicion falls on Admiral Tag Sherman, her former boyfriend, because he's named as the beneficiary of her generous insurance policy. The case is referred to the judge advocate general of the Navy's legal corp, who concludes fairly quickly that the admiral is innocent and assigns the case to investigator Commander Karen Lawrence. Then, after Sherman's close friend and Navy mentor dies in suspicious circumstances, leaving the admiral an incriminatingly large estate, Lawrence enlists the aid of Wolfgang (""Train"") von Rensel, a huge, savvy civilian colleague in the Navy Investigative Service (NIS). Sherman reveals to Karen and Train that he's received threats from Marcus Galantz, a Navy SEAL who assassinated enemy officers in Vietnam and has been listed as MIA since Sherman's rescue boat failed to retrieve him from a clandestine mission in Vietnam. As Karen and Train uncover more secrets, they learn that Galantz may be a ""Sweeper,"" a CIA operative who kills rogue agents. Romance builds between Karen and Train as the plot drives towards a showdown in a remote area near Quantico. Although the suspense flags at times, Deutermann's insider's knowledge of the Navy and Pentagon politics coupled with his likable protagonists make this a gripping new addition to his line of naval mysteries. (Aug.)