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Scorpion


Reviews:

"Fasten your seat belts for high adventure with the best secret agent in the Middle East and the greatest master of the close escape since James Bond... SCORPION is a supercharged thriller about Soviet menace and Arab fanaticism in the volatile Middle East. It has everything: a Congressman's beautiful daughter sold into white slavery... a sexually perverted Saudi prince with fanatic global ambitions... an aging British spy with a penchant for Arab youths... a Bedouin blood feud... explosive nonstop action... heart stopping heroics... splendidly sinister villainy. And Andrew Kaplan, who interweaves these elements in an intricate and ingenious plot, proves as nimble in delineating character and evoking exotic locales as he is in sustaining razor edged excitement."

--Mystery News

 

"A fast paced, supercharged debut thriller."

--Kirkus Reviews

 

"Pure Dynamite... espionage laced with high voltage Middle East adventure."

–-Washington Times

 

"An exciting thriller with nonstop action... The book truly reads like 'James Bond in Arabia' and, once started, is hard to put down."

--Tulsa Daily World

 

"Terrorism, double crosses and a blood feud... The plot has more twists than a tornado, including a totally unexpected finale."

--The Drood Review


Excerpt:

It was an old nightmare, as terrifyingly familiar as the darkness of sleep itself. She was running for her life down the dark streets of the Latin Quarter, the sound of her footsteps echoing in the silent night. The streetlights reflected wetly on the pavement, still damp from the afternoon rain. The cafes and shops were closed and shuttered as firmly as the eyelids on a corpse. There was no help anywhere. As in a dream, there was that nameless terror of the shadowy man relentlessly pursuing her. Dreamlike too was that horrible feeling that flight was useless. Sooner or later he would catch her and kill her. Except that it wasn’t a dream.

At the corner of the rue de Seine, Kelly paused to catch her breath in the shadow of a kiosk plastered with posters advertising the Theatre Odeon. Her breath came in great, heaving sobs and she wondered if she screamed it would bring lighted windows and help, or whether it would just make it easier for him to find her. Her chest heaved and she tried to scream, but nothing came out. Her throat was blocked by a burning lump, as though she had swallowed hot wax. She sucked in desperate gasps of night air and tried to think of what to do, but nothing came. The air tasted of the night and fear. It smelled like wet clothes.

A wave of nausea rippled through her and she was sick again. When she stopped heaving, she found herself on all fours, moaning softly like an animal. She gagged at the smell and from somewhere came the irrelevant thought that her dress and stockings were ruined. Imagine worrying about that now, she thought wildly. A hysterical laugh began to bubble out of her and then she froze at the soft purr of the Mercedes, its lights out, as it slowly prowled next to the curb. Her beautiful eyes went flat with terror, like a rabbit caught by a car’s headlights and there was nothing but the fear.

Then the Mercedes stopped and she heard the sound of the car door opening and then being carefully closed. The sounds of his footsteps came closer. She pressed her face against the hard embrace of the kiosk, curling her body into a tight ball, wishing she could shrivel away and disappear in the shadows. The footsteps stopped nearby and she could hear his breathing as he stood there, listening. Without realizing it, she was making soft whimpering sounds, like a whipped puppy. He came closer and his teeth glowed in his dark face as though they were phosphorescent. A ray of streetlight glowed with a pearly sheen from the metal as he motioned with the gun for her to get up. She shook her head, her long blond hair rippling with the movement.

“Please,” she whimpered.