Second installment in a new series (Delta Search, not reviewed). Here, the Terran Confederation is locked in a deadly struggle with two alien races, the saurian Hunzza and the doglike Alba. On the human colony planet Wolfbane, 16-year-old Jim Endicott bids farewell to his Earth-bound girlfriend, Cat, only to find he's wanted by a pair of rival aliens: Thargos the implacable Hunzzan hunter and Korkal Emut Denai, an Alban spy with connections to Earth government bigwigs. Earth's top-secret computer systems, or mind arrays, are the best in the galaxy, you see, and somehow the key to them has been encoded in Jim's DNA. So when Thargos tries to grab Jim, Korkal intervenes, only for Jim to save Korkal's life; the two become allies. To evade Thargos, Korkal drops Jim off on planet Brostach, where he becomes a mercenary. Personable, intelligent, and capable, Jim advances rapidly and soon saves an Alban battle fleet. As war flares between Hunzza and Alba, Korkal admits that, without Earth's help, the Albans are doomed. So as the Hunzzan space navy closes in on Earth, can Korkal, Cat, and Jim construct a huge mind array in time to save humanity? Agreeably inventive, well plotted, interestingly peopled, deftly paced and controlled: a quantum leap ahead for Shatner, following the abysmal Man O'War (1996).