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by Andre Norton & Sherwood Smith

Pub Date: Jan. 22nd, 2003
ISBN: 0-312-85922-8
Publisher: Tor

Another yarn about the Time Traders (Echoes in Time, 1999, etc.), agents who defend the integrity of time against beings who would like to change the past—or the future. Archaeologists dig up a gold earring in the ruins of what was once Atlantis, the Greek island of Thera before its volcano spectacularly exploded in the 17th century b.c. The earring not only bears a modern jeweler's mark, but also happens to belong to Time Agent Eveleen Riordan! What was she doing in the past when she lost the earring—and did she die there? Clearly, the Time Traders must investigate. With Russian help, Eveleen, her husband and fellow-agent Ross Murdock, their boss Gordon Ashe, and archaeologist Linnea Edel journey back two thousand years to Kalliste, as the island was then known. The volcano is just about ready to blow its top. Worse, Eveleen, Ross and company soon find evidence that the Baldies—mysterious aliens determined, for unknown reasons, to interfere in human affairs—are planning something. If the Baldies prevent the eruption, the future will change and humanity won't develop space travel. Still more aliens show up: the Kayu, furry-faced sulfide-breathers, claim to be ancient enemies of the Baldies. Can the Time Agents figure out what's going on, and what to do about it, before the volcano explodes--or fails to?

Skimpy on plot, despite slathers of unconvincing local color and frequent gosh-wow what-ifs.