Book: Havana Strike by Jim DeFelice

Entertaining military-spy thriller

November 28, 2010

Jim DeFelice

Havana Strike

Leisure, 1997

ISBN: 0-8439-4330-0

392 pages


Havana Strike by Jim DeFelice is an entertaining military-spy thriller from the late 1990s. As the book begins, Fidel Castro has been dead for two years and Cuba is ruled by a shaky, quasi-legitimate, reasonably-capitalist “interim” government. Havana is a nest of spies. To the annoyance of the American ambassador, the government keeps delaying setting a date for elections. One reason they give for that is the attacks made by various rebel guerilla groups that are active mostly in the mountains.

There are two main characters. Edward Garcia is an brilliant pilot in the American Marine Corps who is loaned to the tiny Cuban air force. The other is Scott McPherson, a hard-bitten semi-disgraced CIA agent who’s an “advisor” to the American ambassador.

When Garcia gets shot down, he learns that the rebels have a trick up their sleeves. You can imagine that he and McPherson will be called on for some heroics.

The book perfectly good entertainment for an evening or two, though I confess that I found the ending a trifle more cinematic than necessary.