THE MEXICAN ASSASSIN by Hartshorne

THE MEXICAN ASSASSIN

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Despite an occasional flicker of inside-CIA repartee, this is strictly dry spy goods, occasionally sliding from the dusty-ordinary into the truly embarrassing. When a Mexican police chief is knocked off by a busy hit-man and then an armory on the Arizona-Sonora border is looted, it's a job for Lee Barber, CIA rebel and master of disguise. He turns up in Madre Dolorosa as a mild New England minister (oh, c'mon, Hartshorne) and soon is learning all about both drug rings and lefty insurgents: the local priest is a rebel priest who's being controlled by a KGB type named Che, and they're planning to start the revolution with a poison gas attack on Madre Dolorosa (Barber learns this while disguised as Saturnino, humble peasant). To complete the central casting, there's a Robin for our Batman, an overeager whiz kid who says ""Poison gas is the downest of all downers,"" and there's fiery Dolores--suspect? ally? android?--with whom Barber trades some of the oldest extant spyromance dialogue. No surprises, no tension, no credibility, and no wonder ""Hartshorne"" must ""otherwise remain unidentified.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1978
Publisher: Scribners