The Plot

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

The fragmentation of the Soviet Empire was anticipated in this novel more than a decade before the actual events. The ensuing civil war propels the eastern reaches of that territory toward solidarity with China and the African-Arab Alliance. The “Afrabs” have taken total control of Israel, Zimbabwe, and South Africa. The states of the Persian Gulf have also moved over to the Chinese and Afrab side. Together, in 2002 they form the Grand Alliance of Progressive Peoples Republics. Opposing them is the Alliance of Western Democracies, vastly outnumbered in population and on the defensive because the level of weapons technology has reached rough parity between the two camps. International tension grows during the three-year time span of The Genesis Machine. Flashpoints in Korea, Taiwan, Iraq, and India spark with increasing menace.

Dr. Bradley Clifford is a brilliant American physicist who wants only to be left alone to continue his research. Political heat forces him from his ivory tower. The Advanced Communications Research Establishment (ACRE) in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he works, is under increasing pressure to contribute to the nations military preparedness. Clifford’s most beloved area of research is showing no immediate payoff of this kind, and he is called on the carpet.

Clifford’s nemesis is Miles Corrigan, liaison director from the Pentagons Technical Coordination Bureau in Washington. His job is to make sure that...

(The entire section is 568 words.)