"Exhilarating science fiction police procedural"
By 2030 the Moralist Party rules supreme in the United
States after decades of showing the hypocrisies of the two
former major political parties and pushing Christian
principals in support of life. Death is outlawed as
machines keep people alive regardless of the illness or
injury. In Des Moines, Dr. Patricia Jewett deals with the
end of death as a medical practitioner at the Chronic Care
Facility of the C. Everett Koop Memorial Hospital.
Patricia somewhat stays detached until her mentor Dr.
Shobert arrives paralyzed and apparently brain dead from a
vehicle accident. Machines keep him alive. When Shobert
convulses, Patricia wants to observe the symptoms, but
Nurse Krystal Fantalla forces a confrontation. The next
day Patricia finds Krystal dead in Shobert's room.
Homicide Detective David Scott investigates, but wants to
date Patricia and mostly needs to keep her safe as someone
with plenty of power wants her and her comatose patient
This is an exhilarating futuristic science fiction police
procedural. The story is at its best when the Moralistic
Party's posturing are viewed and when hints of the past
like naming the hospital for Dr. Koop or even the use of
Morse Code gives a decades in the future feel to the
tale. The mystery is fun to follow as is the
relationships between Patricia and her surgeon boyfriend
SOB Kaign and a kind David though the contrast between the
two males is too extreme. The who-done-it is a delight
and how the conspiracy is solved is clever to observe.
Readers will appreciate Mickey Zucker Reichert's skills to
make the future seem now.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted January 19, 2004