COUNTERPROBE by Carole Nelson Douglas


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Sequel to Probe (not reviewed), a fairly standard esp/UFO/inquisitive-alien yarn, from the author of the fantasies Keepers of Edanvant (1987) and Heir of Rengarth (1988). Jane Doe is a human, cloned from a single cell by UFO aliens, grown to adulthood, equipped with various superpowers and returned to Earth as an information-gathering mechanism. Psychologist Kevin Blake took Jane under his wing and eventually became her lover; now, Kevin and Jane must flee as a secret government agency, represented by agent Turner, determines to pick Jane apart and study her powers. Turner brings in unpleasant psychologist Nordstrom--a former classmate of Kevin's who has a fetish about emaciated women and likes to torture them mentally. Under Kevin's influence, Jane slowly becomes human and throws off her alien programming, so the aliens decide to destroy her. Then Turner captures Kevin, and later discovers Jane naked and half-dead in the snow. Nordstrom goes gleefully to work, only to get creamed by Jane's telekinetic powers--but wait! Is this Jane? She seems to have lost weight and regressed into alien programming. Aha! Soon the real Jane shows up--the double is another clone, sent by the aliens to destroy Jane #1. Competently wrought for the most part, though the ideas are trite and the omnipresent psychologizing wearisome. Overall: an enormous improvement on Douglas' wretched fantasies.

Pub Date: Dec. 2nd, 1988
Publisher: Tor--dist. by St. Martin's