Ryan's hard-cover debut: the techno-thriller tale of how French scientific prestige--as well as the future of human existence--is threatened by a bad-tempered, self-operated, experimental Soviet stealth plane. French scientists, in search of la gloire scientifique, have built a proton accÃ‰lÃ‰rateur bigger than South Pacific neighbor Marlon Brando. If they can just get the gadget to run right, the world will have to acknowledge the primacy of Gallic physics. But, zut! What is this? Something is boiling albatrosses and airplanes in mid-tropical flight awfully close to the grand nuclear experiment. Unknown to the French and invisible to radar, bobbing nearby is the Kamov--an exceptionally brainy experimental Soviet stealth fighter that ejected its pilots and landed itself on the ocean after a disastrous midflight malfunction. Kamov is equipped with the very latest in Soviet weapon technology, a powerful death-ray that bounces off the nearest convenient reflective surface to zap whatever threatens the plane. And since the Soviets have programmed progressive paranoia into Kamov's intelligence, the irritable plane is zapping everything around. American marine scientist Cas Bonnet, whose discovery of the nuked albatrosses made him very angry, leads the effort to sneak up on the plane from behind before it can detonate several bazillion tons of French fissionable materials. Assisting Mr. Bonner is his lovely girlfriend--a Soviet spy posing as a restauranteur while sneaking around the French project. Slick technothrills, pretty scenery, mild tension.