cover image Alien Hunter: Underworld

Alien Hunter: Underworld

Whitley Strieber. Tor, $25.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-7653-3154-0

Flynn Carroll, a Texas cop assigned to an ultra-secret government group combatting rogue aliens from the planet Aeon, has a series of murders to solve in Strieber’s gory, workmanlike sequel to 2013’s Alien Hunter. The victims had all been derelicts whose mutilated corpses were dumped in the Northeast, but the latest is a neurologist, Daniel Miller, who may have “hit on something somebody would rather we didn’t know.” The stakes are predictably high, and of course everything depends on Flynn alone (“mankind’s future was his to win or lose”). Strieber makes a throwaway reference to Eisenhower having had contact with aliens, but otherwise offers only a sketchy, illogical backstory of human clashes with extraterrestrials in the mid-20th century. Labored prose doesn’t help (e.g., “The plane flew on, as did Earth on its mysterious journey, each bearing its cargo of innocent lives into an uncertain future”). Agent: Russell Galen, Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency. (Aug.)