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Viehl, S.L. Shockball.

(A StarDoc novel). Penguin Putnam, Roc. 410p. c2001. 0-451-45855-9. $6.99. A

Fourth in the series of Stardoc SF medical thrillers, this novel finds our heroine Cherijo and her new husband, Duncan Reever, once again on the run from her creator. Cherijo was created in a lab and is considered not human but property. Joseph Gray Veil is determined to get Cherijo back so she can be his wife, and the law is on his side. Taking shelter with a renegade band of half-breed Indian/ aliens, Cherijo and Duncan get caught up in a game that makes pro wrestling seem like child's play. Shockball is soccer and lacrosse combined, but penalties are administered by computer and involve electric shocks, hence the term shockball. The Indians recruit Cherijo due to her Cherokee heritage and her medical abilities. She is to help the players on the Indian team recover so they can continue to play and win the championship. When Duncan is called in to replace an injured player, the stakes get much higher for Cherijo. Complicating matters is the fact that Rico, the natives' chief, is Cherijo's clone brother. He wants revenge on Veil for not being his favorite as Cherijo was and is. He was infected with syphilis by Veil, and it has gone to his brain, giving him paranoia and delusions of persecution.

The plot gets complicated, with other characters from previous books showing up to add spice or intrigue. I did enjoy this book, but think it would help if I had read the others before it. Recommended for libraries that have the previous books. This really is for adults or older teens, with its subplot about syphilis. Stacey Conrad, Middle School Reading Teacher, Palmyra, MO
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Author:Conrad, Stacey
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Mar 1, 2002
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