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Contact Imminent (The Jani Kilian Chronicles Book 4) Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
Once this one came out on Kindle -- I started in on it and was concerned, at first, that it wasn't going to be as good.
But, as in the preceding three books, the emotional impact of the story served up an exciting and satisfying read.
Excellent -- all four books.
The members of her mob are all back--the Shakespeare-quoting Naill, the semi-smarmy Lucien, her doctor chum John who hybridized her in order to save her life, the crafty idomeni leader Tsecha. They're always true to Jani in their fashion--for the most part anyhow, as for the most part they all have their own agendas.
And then Ms. Smith introduces a new character, the terrorist Micah Faber; and through his character she speculates on the idea of virtual reality via hypnosis: a fascinating concept.
As with the previous novels this one is complete in itself. There are no cliffhanger endings. It's clear Ms. Smith has plans for more books in the series, but they'll come at her own pace. At the back of the paperback edition you will not find a preview first chapter of the next book in the series, which in some sense is a blessing although you'll probably grab the next one as soon as it appears.
Notes and asides: Naill refers to MacBeth as "The Scottish Play" because actors consider it to be bad luck to speak the play's true name. One would suppose that Ms. Smith has made Chicago the capital of her "Commonwealth" because she lives in Northern Illinois, as her biography makes perfectly clear.
In this novel, a year later, Jani, Niall and Tsecha are observers for a mine removal operation on the grounds of the Haarin enclave at Chicago. Something goes wrong and the mine explodes, killing a Terran bomb disposal tech and an idomeni security suborn and injuring Lieutenant Pullman. Jani is suspicious of the official explanations for this incident; since she is leaving for the Outer Circle on business for Tsecha, she asks Lucien to join the investigation team to uncover the true situation.
Jani travels to Elyas in a Neoclona ship with John Shroud and Niall. There she is kidnapped and transported to a Haarin colony, where she finds hybrids much like herself. Soon she is in the middle of a political conflict in the Haarin community between the established dominant and a hybrid challenger.
Back on Earth, Lucien singles out Faber, a comtech who had been on the bomb site in the bunker with Jani and who has been acting strangely since the incident. Lucien has Faber followed and keeps showing up in the comtech's life. Among other things, he notices that Faber is checking out the specs of the latest model military exoskeleton armor.
This novel is an investigative procedural on Earth and a character study on Elyas, with various side stories. Although the author tells part of the story from the viewpoint of Faber, she is able to maintain the suspense up until the final climax. You probably will not want to put the book down until the story is done.
In this story, Jani starts taking on some of the responsibilities of Tsecha's suborn. She acts as more that Tsecha's Eyes and Ears on Elyas, stabilizing the hybrid challenge in a very priestly manner and then gathering a cadre to keep the situation under control after she returns to Earth. While the immediate problems are resolved, this story ends with the promise of more excitement to follow.
Highly recommended for Smith fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of suspense and intrigue, with a touch of romance, in a SF setting.
-Arthur W. Jordin
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