Hope for the future in the hands of an enemy from the past . . . Cassandra Kresv must find the answers that could free her people--or doom her family. A quarter of a million people die in the destruction of the moon Cresta. The League civil war is accelerating out of control, but projections indicate that as their techlogically induced sociological dysfunction continues, all of humanity may face a similar fate. In the aftermath of Cresta's destruction, Sandy Kresv discovers the alien Talee operative Cai in Tanusha, there to learn just how far the techlogically-induced insanity has gone. The Talee have seen this before, and they are terrified of anything threatening a recurrence. Meanwhile, Sandy's old nemesis Renaldo Takewashi, the self-proclaimed father of synthetic intelligence, comes to the Federation seeking asylum. Talewashi may even have a cure--previously unkwn Talee techlogy implanted into a human child subject--Sandy's little boy, Kiril. But it is exactly this techlogy that the Talee fear, and they will exterminate anyone caught using it. Now, Sandy must fight to save her family from a terrible new threat, but doing so may plunge humanity into ather destructive war between humans, or worse, against the massively-advanced Talee. And what final secret are the Talee protecting about the origins of synthetic humans like Sandy that could either liberate Sandy's fellow synthetics from bondage or spell disaster for all humanity?
Joel Shepherd is the author of five previous novels in the Cassandra Kresnov series--Crossover, Breakaway, Killswitch, 23 Years on Fire, and Operation Shield--and four novels in the Trial of Blood and Steel series--Sasha, Petrodor, Tracato, and Haven. He has studied international relations as well as film and television, interned on Capitol Hill in Washington, and traveled widely in Asia.