the Los Angeles Police Department,nknows that. Perhaps that’snwhy he has penned a number ofnnovels—^really apologias for hisnformer colleagues—instead ofnremaining on the streets. He alsonknows that most police ofiicersnaren’t sanitized, telegraphic JoenFridays nor trendy, tough-buttendernKojaks. Thus, the men innblue portrayed in The Delta Starnseem more realistic and lessnslick than their televised counterparts:nthese men are losers,ncops on the edge, regulars atn”The House of Misery” saloon.nThe world in which they work,nthe sleazy underbelly of L.A.,nappears to them to be quite mad;nin that environment, Wambaughnshows that they, too, often becomendemented. Hence, onenoflScer, whose job it is to protectncitizens from criminals and tondefend lives in general, combinesnthe two charges and “resuscitates”na mugger, who had beennknifed in the act of thievery, rigjitninto whatever afterlife awaitsnhim. Norms become blurred,nbut there are still norms, if notnreadily apparent, then at leastnunderlying the activities innWambaugh’s world.nThe values in the world creatednby Sam Kopetwas, as implied bynthe title Easy Money, refer onlynto material goods. There are twonofficers of the Fort LauderdalenPolice Department in the book;nboth are shakedown artists. Thenlaw they abide by is one that upholdsnmaximum profit at whateverncost. Koperwas was never ancop. He is a partner in a chain ofnjewelry stores in New Jersey,nwhich may explain why he isnmore concerned with accoutrementsnthan Wambaugh and lessnconcerned with people. EasynMoney is an excellent examplenof a book wherein form and contentnare distinctly separate:nKoperwas is able to write quiteneffectively but the story goesnnowhere except straight into anhole. We wonder—in the eventnof a robbery at one of his jewelryn42inChronicles of Cultiirenstores, w^ho would Koperwasnwant: his demi-existentialist ornone of the gritty guys from L.A.?nThe choice isn’t an ideal one butnneither are the abusive conditionsnunder which real police officersnmust toil. nnPerceptiblesnA. J. Quinnell: The Snap; wiffiamnMorrow; New York.nIf television had never beennInvented, spy novels would go anlong way to filling in the timenthat the incandescent lamp makesnavailable. The volume of booksnin the genre is such that one suspectsnthat there is a vast audiencenwhich does not reside within thenglowing blue realm of Nielsen.nThe volume also means that annauthor has to come up with booksnthat vdll seize—^there’s no playingnbut rough playing—^part ofnthat audience. Two approaches,nwhich were borrowed from thengenre’s big brother, highbrownliterature, are to make the heronan antihero or to make the wholenthing so fiizzy that right andnwrong are, at their most distinctive,nproblematical. The resultsnare uniformly unsatisfying. A. J.nQuinnell’s The Snap is a semientertainingnspy novel. What isnremarkable is that there are goodnguys and bad guys. What is astonishingnis that in this story setnin the contemporary world, thengood guys are the Israelis. Nonwonder the author uses apseudonym.nSince the advent of MickeynSpillane novels and James Bondnmovies there has been a trap thatnauthors of detective and/or spynnovels can fell into: it’s the snarenof using too much violence orntoo much sex. Mr. Quinnell, unfortunately,nputs them together,nand enough is enough.nRon Arnold: At the Eye ofUienStorm: James Watt and thenEnvironmentalists; Regnery/nGateway; Chic^o.nGiven what we’ve read in thenpapers, we’ve constructed thenfollowing scenario of James G.nWatt’s daily trip to the InteriornDepartment’s headquarters. Henhops into a huge gas-guzzlernequipped with tanklike treadsnthat totally chew up the flora;nemissions from the vehicle arenmeasured in parts-per-ten, notnthe standard parts-per-million.nAs often as possible he takes andifferent route. This is not tonavoid kidnap by minions of thenSierra Club, but to give himnample opportimity to run overnany and all wild and domesticnanimals that he may encoimter,neven if it requfres traveling overnsomeone’s nicely kept lawn tondo so. Should he notice a bird’snnest in a tree, he immediatelynstops, climbs the tree, crushesnthe eggs, destroys the nest, climbsndown the tree, removes a chainnsaw from his trunk, cuts downnthe tree, then makes a notationnto call a polluting paper companynto remove the vile object.nOn alternate weeks he goes bynhis grandmother’s house to runnher down. Upon arriving at worknhe resumes ordinary activities,nUke selecting “For Sale” signs fornthe Grand Canyon or questioningnwhether Puerto Rico shouldnbe turned into a landfill rathernthan a state.nClearly, this is not what Mr.nnnWatt does. The media—supposedlynsophisticated, not thengrocery-store-checkout varietyn—^make it sound like thesenare the Interior Secretary’s activities.nHe is, in their handling, extremistnnonpareil. Ron Arnold’snbook, however, makes it clearnthat perhaps the charge of fiinaticismnis applied to the wrongnplayer. Of course, given standardnjournalistic practices, missingnthe broad side of a Rocky mountainnis nothing new for thenmedia.nRichard Curtis: How to be YournOwn Literary Agent; HoughtonnMifflin; Boston.nThe cookbook is the numberonentype of how-to book Judgingnby the proliferation of fast-foodnrestaurants, it’s cleat that thenbooks are purchased more fornpicture-gazing than for practice.nThe number two of how-to’s isnthe sex manual, which is alsonsought for graphic details. Suchnmanuals, little more than guidesnto inventive pipe fitting, wouldnprobably be number one if itnweren’t for a vestige of scruplesnin the mass book-buying publicnto which the publishers of Playboy,nHustler, et al. have been layingnsiege for years. How-to booksnseem to be fairly pragmatic:nbooks as tools. But cookbooksnand sex manuals really appeal tonsecret desfres that are rarelynmade manifest (certainly somen