From the author of the Watchtower trilogy: a sporadically arresting sf family-saga with rather nasty, Kafkaesque overtones. In sector Sardonyx, criminals are legally condemned to slavery, and slave traffic is centered on planet Chabad, home of the Yagos: kind, beautiful slave-tycoon Rhani and her ghoulish, incestuously frustrated brother Zed, captain of the slave-transport vessel Net. But fanatical ex-narc Michel A-Rae is mounting a campaign to destroy the slave traffic by cutting off the illicit supply of the slave-controlling drug dorazine; he intimidates the Yagos, who retaliate via the loyal Chabad police and by wheeler-dealing with other powerful slaveholders. And finally there's and implausible showdown aboard the Net as A-Rae traps Zed with a Rhani lookalike, leaving Rhani's lover-pilot Dana Ikoro to resolve the threat and so win his freedom. An anti-slavery tract? Quite the opposite, apparently, since both the Yagos and the slave trade survive intact. So, despite the fairly obvious plotting, this is rather better than other recent attempts in the saga/st vein--but readers will have to make their own accommodations with Lynn's disturbing ethical framework.