McAuley has taken the well-used concept of doorways to alternative, parallel worlds and added some fresh, inventive twists. When physicists at a lab stumble upon the ability to create Turing gates, the United States government quickly takes control of the technology and launches on a long campaign of spreading democracy throughout the alternative worlds. Sometimes that means rebuilding countries devastated by nuclear war, frequently it means engaging in war against communism or fascism and occasionally, the recipients don’t want the new government forced upon them. After fifteen long years of war along several battlefronts, the country elects Jimmy Carter as President based upon his promises of peace. While much of the country breaths a sigh of relief, there are many who don’t relish such change. When former CIA officer Adam Stone volunteers to hunt a killer traveling through the Turing gates, he uncovers a frightening plot that could forever change all history.
Espionage, public policy, a solid story line and fascinating characters combine to create an excellent tale full of twists, turns and surprises. McAuley’s vision of alternative worlds and how the government subverts the Turing gates rings true. The characters’ responses and interactions are believable and the action is nearly nonstop. Don’t overlook this satisfying offering; it lives up to its promise.
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