Doris Fein, Larry Small's overweight friend in Dr. Doom: Superstar, arrives in New York (from California) a day early and...

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DORIS FEIN: SUPERSPY

Doris Fein, Larry Small's overweight friend in Dr. Doom: Superstar, arrives in New York (from California) a day early and finds the aunt and uncle she'd planned to visit hurrying off to Dakoma, a mostly black African country where her white uncle is a UN representative for the U.S.-backed interracial government. But she never actually sees her aunt, she's never before seen her uncle (did he shave his beard, or is this departing stranger an imposter?), and the note signed Aunt Lois urging her to enjoy an expense-paid vacation at the Plaza is not in her aunt's left-handed handwriting. The police dismiss Doris' suspicions, but one attractive, young, college-educated, Japanese-American cop takes an interest in Doris and her case. Carl Suzuki notices that Doris is being tailed; and when they seek help at the UN he recognizes that Uncle Claude's boss, the black Ambassador from Dakoma, is withholding information. But even Carl is thrown off guard when the bad guys turn out to be good guys protecting Uncle Claude from terrorists connected with violent revolutionaries back in Dakoma. One way or another--before Doris is kidnapped by the real bad guys and escapes by jumping from a moving fake ambulance on the George Washington bridge--she and Carl wind up in a number of both out-of-the-way and superlavish restaurants and hotels. After a while, you get a little tired of being cued for awe at still more ultra-expensive accommodations; but in general Bethancourt's offbeat Manhattan tour makes a sparkling background for all the smashing, jet-propelled action Doris' gutsy, non-passive resistance to her captors and her firm feminist mode of operation will win Bethancourt lots of well-deserved political points; but for the politically sophisticated this is canceled by the ugly imperialist distortion of Third World politics used to explain the Dakoma situation. For the politically unsophisticated, it's insidious.

Pub Date: April 15, 1980

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1980