JAMES GRADY – Shadow of the Condor. Ronald Malcolm #2. Putnam, hardcover, 1975. Dell #7570, paperback, 1977.

   A sequel to Grady’s Six Days of the Condor, which was a competent effort made into a superior film (Three Days of the Condor), thanks to improvements made by an intelligent screenwriter and an excellent cast.

   When a member of Air Force Intelligence is found shot to death at a missile silo in Montana, they ask the Liaison Board, headed by the “Old Man” (John Houseman in the film) to take charge of the investigation and discover what sort of plot the dead agent had stumbled onto. He decides to use Ronald Malcolm, the retired “Condor,” as the front man in an obvious operation taking place in Montana, while other agents try to discover what happened from the European end, where the dead man had been stationed.

   Despite the fact that most of the characters are strictly from Cardboard, I found Shadow a real page-turner for the most part, with a gripping twisty plot that gets even twistier when Grady rings in two Red Chinese agents just over the Montana border, who also have a keen interest in the matter.

— Reprinted from A Shropshire Sleuth #40, July 1989.