Here, in Stevens' hard-cover debut, Mideastern masterminds build a hijacking plot around the towering ambition of a British politician and the fierce dedication of a Palestinian terrorist--whose humanity may undo his own efforts. A large cast and multiple story lines are managed in exemplary fashion in this thriller about a plan to shake up the Western World with coordinated waves of terrorism, prisoner hunger strikes, and the hijacking of a Lufthansa jet--all of which, if things go according to plan, will solidly advance the career of the number-two man at the British Foreign Office, Mr. John Kenshaw-Taylor, who will, presumably, be most grateful to the Palestinian conspirators and remember them when he succeeds Mrs. Thatcher in the top job. The plan hinges on the exploits of Walid Haddad, a coldblooded killer who is to lead off the round of terrorist activities with the daylight execution of a PLO officer and then tie things up as leader of the final hijacking. He's an excellent choice. But he is up against SAS Colonel Graham Enderson, a man who instinctively grasps all of Haddad's thinking, including secret pockets of human decency, and follows his every movement until they finally come face to face. A good thriller, never out of control despite the large cast, some easy-to-swallow coincidences, and a fairly ambitious plot. Distinguished by intelligent characters and several very moving moments.