DOUBLE FAULT by Jack M. Bickham


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 Former tennis champ, Vietnam grunt, and CIA stringer Brad Smith (Breakfast at Wimbledon, 1991, etc.) finds himself harried by homicidally traumatized Vietnam combat vets. Over the years, a hit squad has been murdering the survivors of a particular infantry unit that fought at Quang Xi, site of a My Lai-style massacre of civilians. The latest victim is helicopter copilot Dave Wentworth, killed right after a fake Pentagon agent fools Smith into revealing his whereabouts. Last on the death-squad's list is pilot Kevin Green, who vanished after being repatriated from a Vietnamese POW camp. Smith, besieged by uncommunicative FBI, CIA, and Pentagon agents, learns that Green witnessed the massacre, then allowed the guilty GIs to stumble into a Viet Cong ambush. Will the hit squad's last hope--deranged, cancer-riddled Arnie Tubb--get to Smith before Smith can locate Green? Meanwhile, the narrative--alternating between first person (Smith) and omniscient author (dimwitted agents; pathetic, rather than threatening, vets; government bigwigs)--generates no tension or momentum, and precious little intrigue. Altogether a bloated, mediocre farrago; Brad Smith isn't the first spook to look threadbare in the absence of reliable, Evil Empire KGB opposition.

Pub Date: July 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0-312-85385-8
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Tor
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 1993


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