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A Hercules is a giant American cargo plane, and this particular one is owned by the New York Mafia. But it's been heisted, by one of their own employees, and it's now sitting in Karachi, Pakistan, loaded to the ceiling with illegal arms which are to be sold in Rhodesia to Ian Smith. Pilot Martin Gore and his two-man crew know nothing of the plane having been ""temporarily rerouted"" (or being put to personal use) by the Mafia underling. But when the Mafia tries to delay their takeoff from Karachi for the long, one-jump hop to Rhodesia, and when they meet an unfriendly reception in French Djibouti after putting down for repairs and are nearly murdered, and after they are attacked in the air by a MIG fighter, well, they begin to suspect something is wrong. Meanwhile the KGB is monitoring their every move and a huge propaganda offensive is about to be launched by the Russians in the U.N. Finally, when the bottom drops out of the sale to Rhodesia, Captain Gore holds a wide-open auction by radio in midair, offering to sell the arms to the highest bidder in Africa. Fast and fairly peppery--but nothing original to compensate for all that strained credulity.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1978
Publisher: Atheneum