a Novel by Joel Shepherd

HarperCollins (Pymble, NSW), March 2001
Paperback (560pp) $17.50
isbn 0-7322-6799-4

A young woman is on the run, and on her own. She needs to find work and a place to live... she needs to feel like an ordinary human being. But she is no ordinary human being - and when she saves the life of Katia Neiland, President of Tanusha, the secret services discover just how special, just how lethal, she is. Who can she trust? Vanessa Rice, special forces, who wants to be her friend? The President? The Judiciary? Whoever it is she's better decide soon. Those she left behind want her back. The League's Dark Star is a ruthless organisation, and some people in the Federation wouldn't mind handing her over - or causing war... Will she ever find safety? Can she ever stop running?

Cassandra Kresnov is not a human being. Or is she? Two rival factions of humanity – the small, progressive League and the larger, more conservative Federation – are at war. The League’s advances in biotechnology have frightened the Federation into taking up arms, in order to prevent human beings from being buried beneath a tide of synthetic technology. The League’s GIs are purpose-built soldiers, inflexible fighting androids. Cassandra (Sandy) is a special, experimental model. She has a personality, mental flexibility and the ability to learn. But she is not as easy to control as the older GIs. Unfortunately, Sandy is captured by agents of the Federation. Their Intelligence Agency wants to use her for research despite the fact that she is obviously not an unfeeling robot. Rescued by the Federation’s domestic Security Agency, she is in need of medical attention. Although Sandy is distrusted by many, her skills are unmatchable, and when she saves the life of the President, a conspiracy between Federation biotech corporations and the League begins to unravel. But who is behind it all? Can Sandy allay everyone’s suspicions of her? Lieutenant Vanessa Rice, leader of a SWAT unit, becomes Sandy’s friend. Together they begin to make discoveries, none of which are guaranteed to gain them anyone’s trust or favour.

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Eidolon Publications 1995-2005

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