PENDULUM by Robert Eastman


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An amateurish vengeance melodrama embedded in a disaster canvas. Just as Cleveland gets hit by the worst blizzard in years, the sanitation workers go on strike and the city is in deep, unplowed trouble. A wrecked bus with dead and dying children can't be reached by ambulances. Fire is breaking out in downtown Cleveland. And not only have drunken sanitation workers looted Martin Murphy's clothing emporium; three drunks on a snowmobile also invade his Shaker Heights home, which is by now foodless, powerless, and heatless. When the garbage men break in, they steal money and jewels (they're already wearing fancy clothes from Martin's store), they beat his wife and son, and they rape his 13-year-old daughter. And though Martin manages to kill one of the fleeing looters, things do not go well thereafter: his wife dies, he's bankrupt, he must go to prison for four years for the killing. . . and the man (black) who raped his daughter is still free. Finally out of prison, Martin seeks vengeance. . . . Rotten.

Pub Date: June 6th, 1979
Publisher: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich