NovelBooks, 2003, 268 pp.
ISBN: Paperback -1591051363/Electronic - 1591051118
Radiation Protection Supervisor Stella McMasters answers the meltdown siren thinking that the work crew knows a lot more than she does about reactors. Still the retired naval officer performs her job, but disaster strikes. Stella almost dies but is saved by an experimental merging of seventy percent synthetic material so that she is the first human-cyber Commander.
Physically she is back, greater than ever, with superhuman strength and reflexes, but mentally she doubts any man would cherish an individual more machine than woman. Stella has returned to her military roots with a mission to join up with General Loran in the fight against the Scaleys who turn humans into slaves to the All-Mother, a powerful essence that uses mind control and wants Stella. As Stella struggles to withstand the lure of the enemy she also feels feminine for the first time since the operations. She wants her pilot, but he may be mad from separating his essence from his body. Still even if it is just his voice she feels so much like a desired woman.
Though this may sound like a female Cyborg Cop in outer space, Stella insures that the tale is quite different. The tale plays out on two interlocking story lines. Fans of military science fiction will appreciate the survival war the humans are in against a powerful alien foe. That subplot serves more as a background for the audience to follow a wonderful protagonist trying to regain what she lost and to apply her new abilities. Her doubts on several levels as to being human female add a psychological underpinning to a strong cross species war BEYOND THOSE DISTANT STARS.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner