"Target Lancer" by Max Allan Collins

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TARGETLANCER.pngJust in time (though it was published last year) to mark the anniversary of one of this country's worst tragedies  is Max Allan Collins' latest historical mystery novel, Target Lancer.  (Click here to reserve our copy.) 

Nearly a year after the events of Bye Bye, Baby (click here to read my review of that one), fictional Chicago private eye Nate Heller finds himself once again mixed up with the Kennedys and the Mob

Set in late October-early November 1963 (before Dallas...), Target Lancer sees Heller investigating a series of events set off after he plays bodyguard to a client doing a favor for labor leader Jimmy Hoffa.  Subsequently, Heller uncovers a complex and deadly conspiracy involving a mix of fictional and real-life personages including Hoffa, gangsters Johnny Rosselli and Sam Giancana, anti-Castro Cuban refugees, the CIA (and a certain gunman), and of course Robert Kennedy, while trying to prevent a possible assassination attempt on President John F. Kennedy...in Chicago!

("Lancer", incidentally, is the Secret Service code name for JFK.  Which some not-so-friendly people somehow know.) 

To give away more would spoil some wild -and frighteningly all-too-factual!- plot turns.  (But without giving too much away, Collins does suggest the Kennedys had used up their credibility with certain powerful people, which resulted in the infamous event on November 22, 1963.)

Target Lancer is a terrific, suspenseful thriller with fun characters (real and fictional) and solid historical background.  Collins also explains his research methods in the book's "I Owe Them One" afterword, citing various sources (which I'll have to look into getting here at the library), as well as how and why  he chose certain figures (and some compostive characters) from real life.. 

 Check out Target Lancer. And watch this space for a review of the just published sequel, Ask Not!.  (Which you can reserve here.) 

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Ed published on November 1, 2013 5:07 PM.

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