Finding-a-cure-for-cancer is a strong grabber, but it won't be strong enough to pull most readers through this well-researched, relatively literate, but excruciatingly slow-paced and stiffly crafted thriller. New York's Dr. Paul Justin is on the verge of announcing his isolation of the ""C"" particle in lab hamsters. Unbeknownst to Dr. J., however, his work has been spied on all along by an undercover man working for a sinister duo in Colorado that intends to steal and sell the cure to the hundred richest people in the world who are dying of cancer. According to plan, the undercover man hypodermics Dr. J. with a drug that paralyzes him (it appears to be a stroke), but when the undercover man goes to steal the cancer-cure file, it's already missing--lifted by Dr. J.'s boss during the commotion (he'll use the file to bargain for a cabinet post from an unscrupulous presidential candidate). All of this gets investigated--right through to the inevitable chase/showdown--by a macho hero-reporter and Dr. J.'s gal assistant, while Mrs. J. frets over her upcoming mastectomy (""Oh, Paul, my own beloved cancer researcher. What a lousy, lousy irony!""). First-novelist Parry writes decently, has obviously studied the bestsellers, measures out his violence and sex, and adopts the jaunty constantly-shifting-locale approach. . . but a natural storyteller he's not. And without the gift to make this far-fetched scenario seem momentarily real, his nearly 400 hard-working, readable pages seem to stretch on forever.