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Rohmer, Richard.

Toronto, Irwin, c1986. 24lpp, cloth, $19.95, ISBN 0-7725-1560-3. CIP

Grades 11 and up
Reviewed by Jerry McDonnell

Volume 14 Number 6
1986 November

It is the year 2000 and the Star Wars system has just been put into place. There is still a question as to whether it will work as planned and the U.S.S.R. is working on a device to render it useless. Tension between the super powers is as high as it has ever been. At the same time, the American president has to deal with a South Korean government that is very upset because an American general has suggested in a speech that his country is carrying an undue portion of the defence burden for Asia. As well, Congress has just passed a bill curbing auto imports from South Korea and other nations and the president is about to sign it for political reasons.

The first female vice-president is dispatched to smooth ruffled South Korean feathers, but her flight out of Alaska goes astray and is shot down by the Soviets when it wanders into a nuclear weapons testing range. Did the Soviets know of her presence on this commercial flight? The stage is set for an escalation to nuclear war, and this tense novel develops the sequence of events in a logical, terse, and spine-chilling manner.

Rohmer has written several previous novels, including Ultimatum, (Paperjacks, 1982) Exoneration, (Paperjacks, 1982) Separation Two*, Balls!,** and Retaliation,*** as well as a volume of poetry and several works of non-fiction. He is an experienced and successful writer with a good style who writes thrillers firmly based on political situations that are realistic and believable.

This novel, with its very catchy title, should be very popular with adults and senior students in high school who appreciate this genre. It should join the author's other works on the shelves of Canadian high school and public libraries.

Jerry McDonnell, F.E. Madill S.S., Wingham, Ont.

*Reviewed vol. X/2 1982 p.88.
**Reviewed vol. VIII/2 Spring 1980 p.118.
***Reviewed vol. XI/2 March 1983 p.60.

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