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 A freewheeling, high-energy tour de force from British-based TV writer Fink--this one featuring a former star player in a short- lived 1930's radio serial, who emerges from a lifetime of seclusion in the persona of his radio role to battle for justice, only to find reality more than a match for him. Ray Green, aka Reuven Agranovsky, once provided the voice of the Green Ray for eight years (1938-46) while a young man, throwing himself into the part so vigorously that he could no longer separate his life from the weekly episodes. Now, silenced by the sponsor's decision to cancel the show, he's spent 40 quiet years in New Mexico--until one day a chance street encounter with thugs trying to abduct a woman gives him the chance to relive his former glory. He jumps into the fray and sets Amelia free, putting in motion a bizarre sequence of events in which the two join forces to elude the grasp of a wetback-smuggling, drug-running FBI agent, formerly Amelia's lover and the father of her daughter Dolores. Ray is duped by both sides, and Agent Newberry almost convinces him to betray her, but his new-found love for her triumphs. They cross into Mexico to her home in order to find her child and live in peace, only to have their domestic bliss last less than a week when Amelia is brutally murdered and Dolores is kidnapped by Newberry's goons, leaving Ray to return to the US with vengeance in his heart. Easily captured and brought to Newberry, unwittingly implicated in the drug trade by being forced to take part in a deadly ambush, he escapes with a plan to get Dolores away from her evil father, but that fails too. Breathtaking in its juxtaposition of wisecracks and tragedy, with a veritable Don Quixote running loose in the American Southwest: a distinctive debut.

Pub Date: Jan. 18th, 1993
ISBN: 0-312-08787-X
Page count: 608pp
Publisher: St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 1992