SWANN by Dan Sherman


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Far-fetched thriller plots can sail by without much objection when they're as carefully simmered and intriguingly populated as this tale of greedy misdeeds within the CIA. A CIA honcho seems to be running his own private operation--including the murder of Brazil's Minister of Agriculture--so CIA operative Josey Swarm, the nth degree in impassive, Vietnam-vet, bombed-out, burnt-out cases, is assigned to investigate. Meanwhile, we meet likable Roger Dennerstein, a socially conscious weather-prediction genius working out in California for the Carriage Grain Company; he has sold out to a big corporation so as to be able to cater to his gorgeous wife, a conspicuous consumer. Could Roger's worries about his top-secret predictions of impending world-wide drought have something to do with Swann's investigations? Of course--and soon Swarm is saving Roger from the renegade CIA villain's assassins; the villain, in league with some of the grain company directors, has been planning to take advantage of the windfalls that Roger's predicted drought will make possible. So far, so good, but the best is still ahead: the odd-couple alliance between the emotionless spy and the self-righteous scientist. Swann tells Roger, ""Cousin. Listen, I'm going to fuck you over in the end. I can't help it. There's just no such thing as a good guy spy."" But they in fact stick together and do quixotic battle against all manner of government cover-uppers. A just-okay suspense story enriched by the interaction of effective, affecting characterizations.

Pub Date: Sept. 29th, 1978
Publisher: Arbor House