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DREAMLAND by Hilary Hemingway


by Hilary Hemingway & Jeffry P. Lindsay

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0-312-85631-8
Publisher: Forge

 Anyone who still believes that visitors from outer space are little wrinkled green men with weaving antennae are in for some surprises in this novel by Hemingway (niece of Ernest) and her husband, Lindsay. Billed as a fictional account of an alleged governmental cover-up of a UFO that crash-landed in the Nevada desert nearly 50 years ago, Dreamland spins a high-tech, often far-fetched fantasy of space travelers experimenting with hybrid life forms and revealing themselves to humans via cattle mutilations, eerie music, and bright lights on deserted roads. The bad guys here are US intelligence cadres of Black Berets operating from a top-secret Air Force base and led by veteran Cold Warrior Colonel John Wesley. Wesley shows his style early in the novel by murdering a National Security Agency operative for daring to suggest limits on his ``hostile approach'' to the government's extraterrestrial guests. Meanwhile, heroine astronomer Annie Katz, four months pregnant by her husband, Stanley, in Los Alamos, N.M., mysteriously loses her gestating baby (no miscarriage, it just disappears). In her grief, Annie begins having strange visions of an owl that had nearly smashed into her car's windshield one night, unaware it is a fake memory of her fetus being abducted by aliens. The truth comes out when Katz is hypnotized by UFO investigator Frank Cassidy, summoned to her home by Jungian psychiatrist Carol Blum who says things like ``What happened to you has a psychological classification. It's called Post-Abduction Syndrome.'' Such insights are dangerous, and it isn't long before the Black Berets destroy Blum, Cassidy, and several cops. The Katzes escape, with Annie later evaporating hit squads with a lethal particle-beam weapon called JOSHUA. A little grayish being with four fingers returns the fetus to her uterus. Obviously a far cry from Papa Hemingway's realism, Dreamland is spotty SF that takes an occasional, if unintentional, satirical swipe at space-age angst. (Author tour)