MINDSTAR RISING by Peter F. Hamilton


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 British author Hamilton's debut is the first of a cyberthriller trilogy set in a near-future England where global warming has wrought vast changes in the geographic, environmental, political, and economic landscape. Greg Mandel, a veteran of the Mindstar Battalion, now survives happily on various small commissions. His particular advantage is a gland whose secretions give him the psi powers of empathy, truthsense, hunch. Greg's latest job involves the company Event Horizon, owned and operated by dying industrialist Philip Evans and his cyber-enhanced young granddaughter, Julia: Someone is sabotaging its orbital factories in an attempt to bankrupt the company and seize its secret new invention, a room-temperature superconductor. Greg's investigation points toward evil financier Kendric di Girolamo. Soon, Philip dies, after having had his personality stored in a computer; but then a computer virus nearly zaps him for real. And Kendric, or someone, sabotages the superconductor tests. So Greg calls in a psi-powered colleague, Gabriel, who can predict the future. Another virus attack takes Philip and Julia off-line, while Greg and Gabriel strike at Kendric--only to fall into a trap. Turns out that Kendric has acquired a very powerful ally indeed: the communist ex- President, Leopold Armstrong, whose hated minions nearly destroyed the country, and against whom Philip and Greg have been fighting for years. Believable characters and a solid plot set against a carefully worked-out backdrop: an assured, effective debut from a writer to watch.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-312-85955-4
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Tor
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 1996


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