White Star by James Thayer

Simon & Schuster (first), 1995

After the deaths of two people within arm’s reach and the occurrence of a third tragedy, Owen Gray realizes that a mystery marksman is challenging him to a duel. When he served as a Marine, Gray was America’s best sniper, with 96 kills, most of them at a distance of up to three-quarters of a mile. Gray plans to confront the challenger. From Big Apple to Big Sky, this near supernatural sniper stalks Gray as relentless and as unstoppable as a hockey-masked Jason. The identity of the sniper is an irony — deep, rich and delicious as dessert food for thought. The attention to character development and detail in this novel is exquisite. Everything you always wanted to know about snippery, its history from da Vinci to the Viet Minh, is covered, as is terminology from “bull” to “furniture.” The final scene between the two Olympic snipers is so long and breathless that you may find the light dimming and your face turning blue. If your thing is gore, this is the novel for you; there is enough pain and agony to make the Marquis de Sade sit up in his grave. Purveyors of greasy grimy gore (Hollywood) are sure to go gaga ooh la la. Pick this one up at a bookstore now and, later, at a theater near you. (Jim D Combs)

Originally published in Issue # 136 – March/April 1995

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