The second installment of Van Anderson’s series ably expands on the previous installment’s story. Some new particulars regarding the enigmatic White, for example, make him a stronger, more intriguing character; for instance, the spy turns out to be better at surveillance than hand-to-hand combat, and as a result, he’s just as vulnerable as David is. The energetic narrative keeps its edge with a constant sense of threat: Heather has a limited amount of time left to live, and the cops and Russians pursuing David are sometimes a step ahead of him. As in the previous series entry, there’s plenty of medical terminology, but it’s generally comprehensible, as David explains much of it to White. Van Anderson also offers striking details, as when David vividly describes a gruesome wound that he suffered during the events of the last book.
A commendable thriller that makes its medical science riveting and exhilarating.