ALL FALL DOWN
by Lee Gruenfeld
#2 on the
New York Times list of
the best thrillers of 1994
|From the Warner Books jacket...
In California, a black pilot scarred by combat during World War II is about to do battle in the skies once more...In Washington, an aging FBI agent has locked into the mind of a sociopath who has created a way to grab control of any plane in the sky...In small-town Minnesota, a local police chief sends his men after a suspect - while a psychologist at a video display terminal hundreds of miles away knows that the person they seek is already gone...
Within hours after Flight 235 nearly crashes in the Pacific Northwest, an investigator at the National Transportation Safety Board opens a Federal Express envelope and reads a demand for $5 million, to be paid out by automatic teller machines across the country. The extortionist's threat: to scramble the navigation systems of virtually any aircraft flying in the United States.
For Jack Webster, a former navy commander and now an FBI investigator, the first mystery is why the terrorist hasn't asked for more. In the following days and hours, through endless cups of coffee and arguments with senators, undersecretaries and government bureaucrats in a secure Washington conference room, Webster gets his answer: His adversary, maneuvering skillfully behind the labyrinth of a far-flung computer network, has more at stake than money. When a cargo jet, its instruments insidiously misled by remote control, is led to fiery destruction, Webster knows he's up against a killer.
Webster and a high-powered team of experienced investigators begin a duel of psychological warfare. It is a contest that forces Jack not only to uncover the identity of his enemy, but also to relive his life as both a warrior and a man.
The men and women in ALL FALL DOWN are all warriors. Amy Goldberg is a senior National Transportation Safety Board investigator and disillusioned CIA veteran. Florence Hartzig is an unkempt, overweight computer genius who turns out to be a razor-sharp detective. And Beauregard Kincaid is a retired aviator who joined the air corps in 1944 believing only in John Wayne and one of the only pure freedoms available to blacks at that time, the joyous exhilaration of flying.
For his first novel, the psychological thriller IRREPARABLE HARM, Lee Gruenfeld earned widespread acclaim. Now Gruenfeld follows IRREPARABLE HARM with another scorching, blockbuster thriller. But while ALL FALL DOWN entertains and fascinates, it also takes us back through decades of American history and, in the face of imminent catastrophe, on a stunning quest for a true American hero.
|Warner Books, 1994|
|ISBN 0-446-51714-3; 436 pp.|
|Audio by: The Publishing Mills|
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A New York Times "Notable Book of the Year"
300,000 paperback first printing. Film rights under option to Columbia Pictures. Publication in Germany, Japan, Israel, et al. Audio from The Publishing Mills.
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