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With this terrifying thriller, Suarez (Kill Decision) provides further support for the proposition that he's a worthy successor to the late Michael Crichton. Scientist Jon Grady and his colleagues have just invented a device that can reflect gravity, a major breakthrough that has the potential to revolutionize physics. But Grady's moment of triumph is short-lived. A Luddite terrorist, Richard Cotton (whose group is winningly described as "a branch of militant Amish who had settled on the mid-1980s as their permissible technological level"), captures Grady's team and sets off explosives to destroy them and their creation. To Grady's surprise, he survives the blast, only to find himself in the clutches of a seemingly omniscient U.S. government agency, the Federal Bureau of Technology Control, which monitors innovations and assesses their "social, political, environmental and economic impacts with the goal of preserving social order." That brief requires the BTC to suppress advances, like the gravity reflector, for what it perceives as the greater good. Suarez once again mixes science and fiction perfectly. Agent: Raphael Sagalyn, Raphael Sagalyn Inc. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
*Starred Review* Jon Grady, a mostly self-taught particle physicist, is on the verge of perfecting an invention that will change the world when a group of radical terrorists break into his lab, destroy the place, and kill everyone within except not really. Grady isn't killed; instead he's spirited off to the top-secret headquarters of the Bureau of Technology Control (BTC), a clandestine U.S. government department devoted to identifying and controlling new technologies. The BTC offers Grady the opportunity to work for them, developing his ideas for the benefit of the BTC, but Grady refuses and is promptly whisked away to a BTC prison, where an artificial-intelligence inquisitor inflicts a variety of tortures on him, trying to force his cooperation. And that's just the beginning, the set-up, really, of this high-flying (literally) sf adventure. Further story developments should probably be left to the author to reveal let's just say readers familiar with The Count of Monte Cristo will spot some key thematic similarities, and the book's denouement involves some of the most imaginative plot contrivances you're likely to encounter. But it is safe to say that the book is extremely well crafted. The characters (even the not-strictly-human ones) are vivid, the pacing is perfect, the villain is capital-E evil, and the author's near-future world is so well developed that you completely buy even his wildest speculations. A tour de force of speculative fiction.--Pitt, David Copyright 2010 Booklist