Books: Sinister Conspiracy?

THE SEARCH FOR AMELIA EARHART by Fred Goerner. 326 pages. Doubleday. $5.95.

Was Amelia Earhart really lost at sea during her round-the-world flight 29 years ago—or was she a spy who died a captive of the Japanese?

Fred Goerner, a San Francisco radio newscaster, pursued the question for six years, and has caught up with what he is convinced is the answer. Obviously, if Earhart simply died in a plane accident, there would be no need for a book. By stitching surmise to fact, Goerner makes a book that barely hangs together. His tantalizing if...

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