A commercially crafted novel that works toward a final scene of high tension, and makes an unswallowable plot almost credible for minutes at a time, mainly through Templeton's familiarity with Secret Service techniques of guarding the president. Adam Northfield Scott, in office for two years, is in New York for a speech when a Latin type suddenly handcuffs himself to the president and raises a bottle of nitro overhead. A fake Brinks armored car that is wired either to explode at midnight or by remote control instantly pulls up, and Scott, chained in the truck, sits in Times Square in full view of the world while the Cabinet haggles over whether to pay fifty million in gold. After the gold is transferred to the kidnappers' escape plane, the Secret Service is warned not to approach the truck, which has perhaps three different hidden detonators.... This is at least the third unmaking of the president book of the season (Black Sunday; Two Minute Warning) to distract us from what's not happening in Washington with what worse might be going off elsewhere.