A Matter of Revenge
Michael I. Koontz
Five Star, Sep 2008, $25.95
In 1956 “Superagent” John Apparite is on R&R recovering slowly from the trauma of his last espionage case; his best friend Agent J died and the Russian operative who killed him Soviet SMERSH assassin Victor escaped. After beating the crap out of a boxing champion, his handler the Director decides John needs to go to work, but first attends a baseball game at Yankee Stadium where the visiting senators recognize him as their almost only repeat paying fan.
John goes to Berlin where his assignment is to help defectors escape to the West. When he meets Christiane on a train, John falls in love. However, she is from East Berlin so he must find a way to get her to the west while his local handler worries about his heart overruling his brain.
Readers with an appetite for the 1950s will enjoy the second Apparite Cold War thriller (see UNDER CLOAK OF DARKNESS). The story line starts slow for action fans as he remains in New York for much of the first half of the novel; John super Senator fan attends a game at Yankee Stadium and beats up a boxing champ before going overseas to the delight of the Happy Days crowd. The tale turns to Cold War thriller once he meets his Berlin contact and romance. Although the one degree of WWII contact seems over the Wall, fans will appreciate the latest adventures of the Superagent who is humanized by carrying an autographed Walter Johnson card on him at all times.