Rich Lowry describing his new thriller, Banquo’s Ghosts“: “Well, think of an episode of ’24’ written by Proust.” (He might have recalled his beau ideal’s Remembrance of Things Past before entitling his recent National Review cover piece on Afghanistan “The War That Hasn’t Been Tried.”)

Apparently the cliffhanger goes something like this: Evil Iranian scientist is developing nukes. Banquo, a “forgotten” former CIA officer, enlists a “dissolute, morally bankrupt liberal news journalist” to travel to Tehran to kill the evil scientist. (Pay no mind to the rumpled oxford; secretly scribblers have mad cloak and dagger skills.) In a shocking twist, the plot fails, and DMBLNJ is tortured. Aided by “the battle-hardened Marjorie Morningstar,” Banquo gets him back, and together they lead a team of federal agents to head off an Iranian nuclear attack on Manhattan. When the formerly DMBL, now heroic, journo’s only daughter is kidnapped by the Iranians, “he and Banquo must race against time to save her … and the City of New York.”

No word on how it ends (though I hear that a certain contributing editor has been allowing Proust for the Hannitized to keep him up nights). Perhaps hundreds of thousands of soldiers are plunged into a desert quagmire only to find that the evildoers aren’t hoarding dangerous weapons after all. But that would probably be too unrealistic–even for fiction.