One Jump Ahead

Mark L. Van Name, Author . Baen $24 (293p) ISBN 978-1-4165-2085-6

M ilitary SF fans will welcome Van Name’s solid debut, the first in a projected series, though they should be prepared for a layer of irony rare in this popular subgenre: the introspective hero’s most complex relationship is with his artificially intelligent tank, Lobo. Jon Moore, a soul-weary soldier with a nanotech secret, becomes involved against his wishes with an effort to rescue a kidnapped innocent. As usual in a corporate-dominated multiple-worlds setting, double- and triple-crosses complicate what should be a simple task. Old vet buddies get involved, and space jet–setting corporate elites receive righteous (and occasionally misdirected) vengeance. Jon finds time to appreciate the mysteries of the universe and muse on the hollowness of his mercenary lifestyle. An attention to the details of future military tech and service, along with several scenes of them in action, will reward those expecting the more standard military SF for which Baen is known. (June)

Reviewed on: 04/23/2007
Release date: 06/01/2007
Mass Market Paperbound - 407 pages - 978-1-4165-5557-5
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