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ZERO COUPON

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ZERO COUPON Paul Erdman (Forge, $21.95) Paul Erdman used to be a provocative read. In thrillers like The Crash of ’79, he’d expose our financial system as a cross between a con game and a high-wire act, gleefully showing how easily the whole unstable mess could fall apart. But now he’s a bore. His latest antihero is a self-satisfied Michael Milken clone who gets out of jail after serving three years for shady (and yet, or so we’re supposed to believe, still honorable) junk bond deals. The guy then makes half a billion dollars in a single day, but with only cardboard opposition, so it’s hard to care. Two large-breasted women scramble in pursuit-and here we’d better close the curtain on this piece of sexist trash, noting only that Erdman really seems to have a thing about breast size. He mentions it nearly half a billion times. D -Greg Sandow