Dream Baby

Bruce McAllister, Author Tor Books $18.95 (434p) ISBN 978-0-312-93197-1
McAllister's first novel is a stunning tour de force. After enlisting in the Army as a nurse, young Mary Damico develops a ``talent'' for dreaming about the future, a device that allows the author to portray the Vietnam War with unforgettable power. Her ability to ``see'' the soldiers who will be her patients before they in fact are wounded proves devastating to Mary, but not to Col. John Bucannon, who is heading up a CIA experiment to determine the potential of such psychic gifts in warfare. Accordingly, Bucannon has Mary transferred from Cam Rahn Bay to his Central Highlands camp, where many similar ``talents'' are assembled. Bucannon assigns them dangerous missions to test the accuracy of Mary's dreams. His plans lead to an astounding operation: he sends Mary, her friend and lover Lt. Steve Balsam, mind-reading Captain Kelly and teenaged Corporal Cooper, who ``reads'' what his German shepherd senses, into North Vietnam. There they are to ferret out plastic explosives hidden by the French in a cave, and use them to blow up the Red River dike. Bucannon's real purpose is not revealed until the first part of a surreal, two-part ending. Masterful interior monologues that yield eerie, tingling tension make this terrifying novel one of the most memorable chronicles of the Vietnam war. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1989
Release date: 01/01/1989
Mass Market Paperbound - 448 pages - 978-0-8125-1098-0
Paperback - 434 pages - 978-0-312-89025-4
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