Block's anarchic adventurer finds himself escaping both from and into Communist countries in this 1967 novel. The multilingual Evan Tanner begins by helping a Yugoslav politician escape with a subversive manuscript taped to the American's body. But getting out of Yugoslavia is only the first stage of a complex route taking them to the Soviet Union where Tanner acquires a Lithuanian orphan (heir to her country's long-lost throne), 12 Latvian gymnasts, a highly coveted Soviet plane, and some Chinese microfilm, all of which he must somehow transport to the United States. Hearing him do so requires wading through some comparatively dry patches, but the payoff is worth it. The yarn's Cold War elements, occasionally satirized by Block, have a nostalgic charm. As with The Thief Who Couldn't Sleep, Nick Sullivan is a master of accents and a tongue-in-cheek tone. Recommended for public libraries.ÄMichael Adams, CUNY Graduate Ctr. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.