Copyright 1996 by
I first read this in June 1998 and most recently on the 3rd April 2002.
Dr Hal Michaelson is a project manager at Lawrence Livermore National
Laboratory. He's clever, charismatic, aggressive and immensely ambitious.
With his latest project - totally convincing virtual reality - he's got
the fervent support of the military and the ear of the President. If he
can pull off this latest project, he'll finally be a mover and shaker
wielding real power.
Gary Lesserec is the genius behind this new VR. Top-notch programmer and instantly-repulsive computer
nerd. He's determined that this technology is going to make him a lot of money
and if the US military won't pay the money he'll get it from whoever's interested.
Still a dead body in the VR chamber is enough to disrupt anyone's plans.
Craig Kreident, FBI high-tech specialist. is called in to find the killer
This hardly counts as SF - it's a high-tech murder mystery set in the Lawrence
Livermore National Laboratory. The only SF in the novel is a (admittedly pretty
impressive) VR rig, however although it's the primary setting, it doesn't play
any critical element in the plot. I've no objection to high-tech mysteries, but
I resent that it's published under an SF imprint, and has blurbs lauding this pair of
writers and/or their combination of mystery and assumed SF by Jerry Pournelle,
Jack McDevitt and Allen Steele.
Having said that, it's a tolerable thriller, if you like that sort of thing. It does
have an unforgettable VR episode to which Jack McDevitt alluded in his blurb for this
Loaded on the 19th August 2002.