Armed Memory

Jim Young, Author, James Maxwell Young, Author
Jim Young, Author, James Maxwell Young, Author Tor Books $21.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-312-85766-0
Reviewed on: 05/29/1995
Release date: 06/01/1995
The future is a dangerous place-just ask any of the half-dozen main characters in this cutting-edge adventure novel about ``microded'' (genetically altered) gangsters who, modified from humans into sharklike creatures, dwell in the ocean's depths and do the bidding of shadowy mafia figures. Told as a series of flashbacks and oral testimonials before the Senate Intelligence Committee, the novel divides into two parts. The first is a tale of two cousins: Johnny Stevens, who always wanted to be covered in scales and whose company has now perfected the technology that enables anyone to look like any person or creature they desire; and Timothy Wandel, who goes to work for Johnny as a PR man. They battle the microded hammerheads until triumph and tragedy consume Johnny's company. The novel's second part is far less successful, with less action and less clear-cut goals for the characters as Wandel and others continue to deal with the global hammerhead menace. Still, Young's writing creates a strong sense of excitement, his future world is familiar enough to be appealing (and distorted enough to be hip) and the mysteries he explores are intense and compelling. (June)