Sunday, July 09, 2006

Book: The Liquidator: The Exchange, by R. L. Brent (1978)

Forgive me if I sound like Casey Kasem, but this one goes out to Bill Crider.

When the Internet yielded a blank on this series, I asked Bill if knew anything about it. As usual, he was a font of information. He ended by saying that he owned a few of the titles but had never read any, so I could review one and save him the trouble. Always happy to be of service.

The backstory: Jake Brand is an ex-Miami cop waging a one man war against the Syndicate. He holds the Mob responsible for the deaths of his father and brother. The Mob, in turn, framed him for murder. Now he’s out and off the grid, picking off Mafia figures one by one.

In this fifth book, Jake is approached by the future Attorney General. The Mob is holding his estranged daughter hostage and will kill her if he doesn’t drop a pending case. If Brand can find the girl, the AG will give him amnesty and a new identity. Assuming that Brand wants either.

My review: Meh. It’s a solidly written book, but no great shakes. It’s also dated. A pimp has to get “his foxes” ready, and a porn kingpin is described as looking “as pretty as Robert Goulet.” Not the first name that comes to mind, although he did cut a sharp figure during his guest appearances on Alice.

Because this post now makes me the Web’s foremost authority on Liquidator books, I include a copy of the cover. Apparently, the Liquidator is a cross between a young Albert Finney and Robert Fuller from Emergency! I’m pretty sure the pimp is Humpty Hump from Digital Underground. Love that “Perils of Pauline” look on the girl’s face.

Miscellaneous: Hasselhoff His Rocker

Lee Goldberg made me watch the Hoff’s ‘Secret Agent Man’ video. While you’re at it, check out his take on ‘Hooked on a Feeling.’ Why should I suffer alone?