Dale Brown continues his story of the patriotic McLanahan family in his latest military thriller, "Starfire." (William Morrow, 407 pages)
Bent on avenging the death of his father who was killed in the Russian-American conflict, the new Russian leader, Gennadiy Gryzlov, sends agents to desecrate the tomb of the American military leader, General Patrick McLanahan, who led the counter attack on the Russians in the war which came to be known in the United States as the American Holocaust.
The agents break into the McLanahan crypt, but find an empty urn. When this fails, Gryzlov orders the ultimate revenge on General McLanahan - the assassination of his son Bradley, who is studying engineering at California Polytechnic State University, where he has gathered a team of engineers to equip the Armstrong Space Station with a laser capable of transmitting solar energy back to earth.
The bellicose Russian president views this experiment as an act of hostility
and plots an attack on the American space station - an act which threatens to put both countries at war.
As a retired Air Force captain, Dale Brown writes an "edge of your seat" military thriller with descriptions of test flights that are so vivid you may feel a bit of motion sickness.
Brown's "Starfire" is a great "space race" story and, like good science fiction, it reveals a great deal of truth - the nation that masters space will remain master of their own fate.
Exploration of space has the potential to not only enhance the quality of life on earth but to preserve basic human liberty.