Friday, August 14, 2015

The Moreau Quartet Vol 1 - S. Andrew Swann

The Moreau Quartet Vol 1
S. Andrew Swann
DAW, Aug 4 2015, $8.99
ISBN: 9780756411251

“Forests of the Night.”  Homo sapiens genetic engineering created two subspecies: Moreaus and Frankensteins.  By 2053, Nohar Rajastan knows he is lower than the Franks who socially rank beneath his fellow Moreaus because his state executed father led his Special Forces tiger unit rebellion.  The son of a terrorist can only be self-employed doing crappy private investigations rejected by everyone else.  Trying to collect his fee at a dive, Nohar escapes with his life, a warning and no commission leaving behind three dead in Ohio (homage to Neil Young).  A Frank hires Nohar to learn who killed a Pink, Congressman Binder’s campaign manager Daryl Johnson.  The case turns ugly when law enforcement and the drug selling gang who killed his previous deadbeat client target Nohar.

“Fearful Symmetries.”  Over a decade and half later Nohar gave up sleuthing, his human wife and the Midwest to reside in rural California as part of a program to remove Moreaus from the cities; while his no longer deep yellow Bengal stripes inform him death is coming soon.  A Los Angeles attorney represents a client willing to pay him 50K to find a missing Moreau, Manuel, who vanished over a week ago.  Nohar insists he is retired until assassins arrive to kill him.

This omnibus is out of publication order as these 1990s releases are the first and fourth novels with the middle two (see Emperors of the Twilight and Specters of the Dawn) to follow in Vol 2.  These are fabulous futuristic hard-boiled urban fantasies with deep looks at racism and genetic engineering.  Nohar remains a sensational lead working the Asphalt Jungle (nod to John Huston, director) in which survival of the deadliest is the universal law

Harriet Klausner

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