Chunk three of Wingrove's projected seven-book, 23rd-century megayarn: the repressed West's stealthy struggle to overthrow Chinese capitalist overlords. The conspiracy against the Chinese is coordinated by the brilliant, ice-cold Howard DeVore and his underlings--terrorist leader Jan Mach and the vicious, ambitious double agent Hans Ebert, now appointed second-in-command to Li Yuan, one of the seven T'angs who rule the world. Thanks to the rebels' efforts, the T'angs' grip on absolute power is crumbling, their scheme to install mind-controlling electrodes in their subjects' brains in ruins. DeVore, meanwhile, having masterfully wrecked Europe, looks to America as a new source of allies and funds; eventually he will go to Mars to continue his development of biological-warfare techniques. So it goes. And goes: description with exposition by cardboard characters against a backdrop that grows ever more friable and unlikely. The effect is numbing, unless you already share Wingrove's peculiar obsessions.