Jericho Interation

Allen Stelle, Author, Allen Steele, Author Ace Books $19.95 (279p) ISBN 978-0-441-00097-5
Steele (Labyrinth of Night) makes his hardcover debut with this brisk thriller set in an earthquake-devastated St. Louis in the year 2013. Eleven months after the quake, the city remains under martial law, policed by the troops of the federal Emergency Relief Agency. When hard-up reporter (and narrator) Gerry Rosen-whose son was killed and marriage ruined by the quake-gets a mysterious message meant for his best friend, fellow reporter John Tiernan, Rosen thinks he's stumbled onto a big story about corporate underhandedness. It soon becomes clear, however, that the story is far more important and dangerous than that. Tiernan is murdered, Rosen's apartment is ransacked by ERA troops and the reporter finds himself on the run, racing against time and ERA soldiers to fathom a conspiracy that threatens the entire country. Steele keeps the action moving at a breathless pace right up to the nail-biting climax. There's little that's new in his near-future setting, though-or in his plot, which treats its basic ingredients, artificial intelligence and corporate conspiracy, in a formulaic way, making this an entertaining page-turner but nothing more. (Nov.) Nonfiction
Reviewed on: 10/31/1994
Release date: 11/01/1994
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