cover image Going Dark

Going Dark

Linda Nagata. S&S/Saga, $27.99 (464p) ISBN 978-1-4814-4659-4

The final volume in Nagata's much-praised Red trilogy features the same high-octane action as its predecessors. James Shelley, no longer an officer in the U.S. Army and officially believed deceased, leads a highly trained, high-tech special forces team under the control of the Red, an inscrutable artificial intelligence that's apparently dedicated to avoiding nuclear war. Recently, however, some of the missions assigned to his team have been poorly conceived. For example, a lightning attack on a secret laboratory in the Arctic yielded no evidence of illegal activity and triggered a small war with the potential to escalate. Shelley who has a direct, electronic connection to the Red, realizes that either it is acting erratically or other AIs with different mission parameters may have evolved. As in the past, Shelley is a driven, idealistic, and not always pleasant protagonist, though he worries increasingly that he isn't in complete control of his own actions and impulses. One of the highlights of the series continues to be the author's portrayal of the intense camaraderie of men and women at war. Readers who loved The Red and The Trials will find this a fitting conclusion. Agent: Howard Morhaim, Howard Morhaim Literary Agency. (Nov.)