Well, it took me awhile to get around to reading this books and I’m not sure why. It is somewhat different than the first book, “Endeavour” which was a really good story, but kind of hard to get your head around. I say that because both of these stories involve time-travel, but not in the sense you think about just hopping back and forth in time. No the first book and this one actually use quantum gates, or stargates, to travel vast distances in space at the speed of light. These stargates can send a ship with it’s onboard crew and passengers to another solar system light-years away. So, for those people, it would seem like a blink of an eye, while anyone on Earth would have aged a light-year. In this story the trip would be an eight-light-year distance which would mean those people doing the traveling wouldn’t be returning back to Earth for at least sixteen years (eight years going and eight years returning). For those on the starship, that would be like going through a door, turning around and stepping back into what would be 16 years in the future on Earth. So, with that out of the way, let me tell you how this book begins…it’s not the way you expected!
Meet Inspector Layton Trent of the Hague War Crimes Investigation division. He’s a cop and he and his partner, Jacques Deveraux, is about a very gruesome attack on an innocent hospital by as bunch of thugs who apparently were out for the drugs they could get. But, they certainly didn’t have to torch the place and everyone in it as they did. They also had killed a UN peacekeeper and then butchered him to get his implants! This whole crime scene really disturbed Inspector Trent and he knew he and his partner were going to have to follow some pretty small leads to track down whoever had been involved.
So, the beginning of this story is a cop story, not what I’d call a military science fiction story, but don’t stop now. Oh, it gets much, much better. While police investigation is very interesting , it can become very deadly. What was obvious in the attack on the hospital, the criminals were going to be very vicious and probably not easy to take down when the time came. And that proved to be the case! Inspector Trent is going to lose someone very close to him and he’s now vowing to seek revenge on whomever did this and that meant he would be there at their Hague Tribunal when they were sentenced. Or so he thought!
Something came up during his pursuit of one member of the gang responsible for the hospital massacre. It was partially responsible for what happened to Trent’s partner, but that was really just a freak accident of timing. What had happened wasn’t even on Earth, but out near Jupiter and specifically with one of it’s moon’s, Io! Now, we’re getting to the meat of this story. See, what happened on Io needs investigating and Inspector Layton Trent is an investigator. But, he certainly didn’t expect to be traveling in space. This was so far from his norm that it was hardly conceivable he was even doing it. Yes, of course his investingation it going to take him to and around Jupiter, but then it’s actually going to take him much farther than that. You see, when Layton Trent gets on the trail of a serious criminal, he doesn’t stop. And in this case, it might never stop or if so, it could be somewhere far, far in the distant future.
I’m not so sure I would have been as dedicated to the job as was Trent! Chasing down a criminal in your own neighborhood is one thing, but following him out to as far as Inspector Trent goes, well, that’s not going to happen for me. But, it was very interesting and there certainly is a lot of science fiction going on in this story. I liked it a lot and I’m not a fan of crime stories, but this one is well worth reading. I do hope the author finds someway and has the time to continue with the story-line. I’m not sure where it will lead, but then I’m not the writer!