When the American president and the Soviet premier schedule summit talks in Vienna, assassination bureaus go wild with...

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THE GREAT WALTZ

When the American president and the Soviet premier schedule summit talks in Vienna, assassination bureaus go wild with anticipation. There's the Committee of 37, for instance, a clot of US biggies fed up with womanizing President Cassidy's socialistic goals and skullduggerous methods (his ""Electricians"" do dirty tricks). Or how about the Kremlin/KGB meanskis--they've got a sleeper in Austrian security--who want to remove sweet old Bolshakov? Each group, of course, has a psychotic, personally motivated gunman on the Austrian prowl: a whitey-hating, light-skinned black pianist who thinks juicy Richard Strauss ""could almost be a soul brother""; the son of a grand old Bolshevik who was purged. But let's not forget Die RÃœge--a sleazy terrorist group that hates both warmongers equally and plants bombs with panache. Well, low-key, pep-pill-popping agent Bradshaw has to protect the leaders from all these nasties; otherwise, they wouldn't be able to engage in the unlikeliest summit talking ever: ""If force is the midwife of progress, it's an abominable obstetrician which facilitates the stillbirths and the monsters."" Bradshaw also has to tangle with diplomette Nora, who sleeps with the Prez (""Screw the President !""/""I have"") but cares deeply, if ambivalently, for the world-weary agent. With gratuitous oral and anal sex tossed in, this ronde attempts to cover all commercial angles by sheer multiplication--and there are fleeting reminders of the more interesting writer Rothberg has seemed to be in the past. But the waltzing assassins (""Whose man is Kaverin? KGB? GRU? Whose man is Todd? FBI? CIA? DIA?"") go around and around without much Hair or a single surprising step.

Pub Date: Dec. 28, 1977

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 1977