Though fussed up with two or three subplots too many, Crosby's new Miami/New Orleans thriller stitches together enough...

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Though fussed up with two or three subplots too many, Crosby's new Miami/New Orleans thriller stitches together enough surefire duels of peril to keep this crisscross of ordeals skimming busily and brightly along. The key duel is between Mafia godfather Cosimo Belardi (""the dumbest capo in many years"") and semi-senile billionaire Abner Conrad; Abner wants to give Bolivia two F-22 fighter jets, and Cosimo has stolen them from the U.S. Air Force for him, but now there are snags in the never-face-to-face negotiations. Caught in between: Abner's beloved lawyer David Gerst, David's new wife Antonia, and innocent bystander Peter, David's best friend. While the Mob abducts and tortures David to force Abner's acquiescence, Antonia and Peter are following David's instructions and fleeing by boat (carrying ten million in cash), reaching hard-won safety and guilt-ridden sexual fulfillment in the mosquito-infested Louisiana bayous. Crosby's unnecessary complications are barely hinted at when we tell you that Antonia is a reluctant FBI agent devoted to her twin-brother agent; that Cosimo is also negotiating with Israel and the Air Force about those F-22s; and that the FBI is using the aliases of Cuban Bay-of-Pigs veterans. But it's easy to ignore those stray threads, easy to ignore the characters' stuck-on psycho-hangups and some loose lipped generalizations about Jews and WASPs and lawyers, even easy to ignore the occasionally awful writing (""Dawn struck like a pistol shot"". . . . ""Curiosity stung him like fire""). Cosimo and Abner--who surmounts senility to star in a final shoot-out with a gun hidden under his lap-rug--are zestfully creaking archenemies, and the mish-mash that surrounds them is vivid enough to catch the eye and breezy enough not to get in the way.

Pub Date: Aug. 30, 1978

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Stein & Day

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 1978