Old-fashioned blood, guts, betrayal, back-stabbing, and some back-scratching sex do their best to keep things moving in this tough-guy first novel--in this case, about a dedicated federal drug agent going for the big bust against the Mafia. Ed Fleming is the uncorrupted but ever more cynical middle-aged drug-enforcement agent looking for a really good case against the Manhattan Mafia and its drug sales and marketing division. It's a depressing business to be in: Fleming's work depends on a network of snitches, who seem to be the lowest of the low, ratting as they do on other rats. And Fleming himself, although unbuyable, is not above fiddling evidence and stretching the truth in order to make an arrest if that's the only way it can be done. No wonder, then, that he's a hard man to live with. His first wife walked out on him, and now his sexy second wife is ready to pack up. But even as Fleming is wavering in his resolve to stick with the Feds, he gets a chance to lead an informant to the disgusting and craven Joey Castelli. It's the perfect opportunity to shut down Joey's Uncle Angelo and round up half the Mafia rats in town. But someone keeps getting to the bad guys before Fleming, and it becomes obvious that one of Fleming's fellow Feds is on Uncle Angelo's payroll as well as Uncle Sam's. Very tough, routine story. Some gore, some heavy-breathing sex, but no special insights, and not a shred of humor.