Monday, June 20, 2011

#25: Assignment Lili Lamaris by Edward S. Aarons

Superspy Sam Durrell relies on a world-famous ballerina, in deep with gangsters and drugs, to help him smash a spy ring in Edward S. Aarons' Assignment Lili Lamaris, another stalwart entry in the lengthy spy series.

This adventure from the early 60s reads more Mickey Spillane than Ian Fleming as Durrell acts a bit more as a bodyguard/gumshoe figure, getting and giving out beatings at a steady pace and dealing with all sorts of lowlifes, including a crime boss and a sinister, legless doctor.

But the backdrop is largely Rome, which is why I picked this one up after a recent visit there (and, curiously, some of the action takes place in Ostia, where I also had a chance to spend a day).  Aarons always has a good sense of place to give interest to his hard-nosed storytelling.

I believe this series is entirely agreeable, and I would rate this outing in the upper half of a steady collection of these I have worked through since rediscovering Aarons a few short years ago.

I nabbed this one for pocket change at a used bookstore in Muncie, Indiana.

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