Manhattan Massacre by Peter McCurtin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Peter McCurtin’s take on the “Lone Man against the Mafia” theme is heavily derivative upon Don Pendleton’s Executioner series in ways that I won’t go into and rather focus more on the differences. The main thing that sets the Assassin apart is that Robert Briganti operates in the open, he announces himself and his intentions to the media, then doggedly pursues his targets much like a hard-boiled cop or private eye. The Executioner relies more on stealth and espionage techniques, more James Bond than Mike Hammer. Not much new here from a plot perspective (even Pendleton ran out of ways to kill off the Mafia after 38 books) although the Briganti character is well fleshed out and interesting, the story moves at a blistering pace, and McCurtin’s writing is solid and evocative. Manhattan Massacre is easily equal to the best of the slew of 1970s war against the Mafia books. I would like to read more books in this series. Not sure if they have been republished or if I have to track down the old paperbacks. I’ll give this one four stars.
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