The Soviet Union has fallen. The Cold War is over. Or is it?
Dr. George Jeffers’ biotech breakthrough has been stolen and his friend is missing in Amsterdam. Jeffers is a brilliant biochemist but a life spent in academic laboratories has left him ill-prepared for the rough and tumble real world. Despite his naiveté, Jeffers rushes off to find his invention and rescue his friend, only to be nearly killed right at the start. He falls in with his savior, Taylor Redding, self-styled World’s Greatest Female Adventurer, a woman whose youth and beauty hide many unpleasant secrets.
The oddly matched pair crisscross Europe in their search, a Europe where the spies of the Cold War have new masters but the same deadly tricks. The body count rises as they go and their suspicions build that the invention is but a pawn in a deadly new political game, one having an eerie foretaste of the current world. They find enemies in abundance, but even their friends may not be friends. Betrayal is no further away than a change in self-interest. Jeffers must shed his naiveté and Taylor her secrets or neither they nor stability in Europe will survive.
She’s mysterious, he’s a genius, they’re a team
“Lady of Ice and Fire.” By Colin Alexander. Donald I. Fine, Inc. $22.95. 346 pages.
This offbeat international thriller has two of the most unlikely but charming protagonists around. The naive and unworldly scientist George Jeffers inadvertently gets hooked up with the World’s Greatest Adventuress, the gorgeous and mysterious Taylor Redding.
After his partner disappears with Jeffers’ designer enzyme on a trip to Amsterdam, the security people at his Cleveland company send him to Boston to team up with an agent who will help find his partner — and the enzyme. Jeffers mistakes Redding for his contact, the agent gets his head blown off, Jeffers is seen at the shooting scene and the police put out an all-points bulletin for Jeffers’ arrest.
Not to worry, Redding gets him to the airport and steals a plane to get him out of town. Knowing the police will be waiting at touchdown, Redding and a very reluctant Jeffers parachute out of the plane into the Long Island countryside.
From there, the two head for Europe and a roller-coaster adventure that takes them around the continent. As adventure follows adventure and the bodies pile up, the naive scientist gets braver and the adventuress less mysterious. “Lady of Ice and Fire” may be unbelievable, but it is a fast-paced joyride that you don’t want to end. Let’s hope Alexander creates a new adventure for this duo.
-Bobbie Hess in The San Francisco Examiner.
Copyright (©)1995 SF Examiner. Posted by permission.