cover image Tek Warr

Tek Warr

William Shatner. Putnam Publishing Group, $17.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-399-13495-1

In his first novel, Shatner delivers a hard-boiled private eye story set against a science-fiction background. The erstwhile ``Captain Kirk'' of Star Trek fame takes us to the 22nd century where many of the technical trappings of society have changed drastically, but politics and attitudes remain the same. Some of Shatner's projections are likely (newspapers and magazines published by fax), some are improbable (androids so human-like that most people can't tell the difference) and some are the same old thing (a missing scientist with the standard-issue beautiful daughter). Ex-cop Jake Cardigan has been sentenced to 15 years in a controlled coma on an orbiting penal colony after being framed for dealing ``Tek,'' an addictive, computerized mind-altering drug. Mysteriously released after only four years, he is hired by a detective agency to find the missing scientist, a task involving a trip to a Mexico torn by civil war to question his former lover, the beautiful rebel leader known as ``Warbride.'' Accompanied by an android of the scientist's missing daughter and torn by the growing evidence that his ex-wife is involved not only in the present case but also his framing, Cardigan fends off attacks by maniacal cyborgs and other futuristic menances. While the writing is awkward in spots, the pace is unrelenting. (Oct.)