DEAD RUNNER by Frank Ross
Kirkus Star


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Poor London's got Arab terrorists again. Mahmoud Assad's in gaol, having zapped an Israeli war hero on the stoop of 10 Downing, and everybody wants the assassin's hide. His buddies have landed a Trident at Heathrow, their star passenger a nuclear device (do-it-yourself model) that could wipe out West London: get Assad on board or else. Unfortunately, Israel's Wrath-of-God commandos, who make the PLO look like the DAR, have beaten them to it; they've blackmailed David Driscoll, sometime gun-runner, sometime spy, into springing Assad and smuggling him to Tel Aviv for an Eichmann-style trial. Driscoll balks, and soon they're on the run, the English mercenary and the nothing-to-lose Arab, tailed by Wrath-of-God, British Security, and unknown quantities as well. Newcomer Ross shows more class than most, writes non-distracting prose when he isn't belaboring airfield maneuvers or forcing similes (""the compass writhed in agony like a virgin at an orgy""), and even comes up with last-minute twists. Read it now or wait for a movie. With multiple male bonding, jailbreaks, airports, and chases from the Channel to French snowbanks, 'tis a natural.

Pub Date: Feb. 24th, 1976
Publisher: Atheneum