The third in the sci-fi fantasy trilogy, "The Human Struggle," this novel tracks the efforts of two fighters, Detective Orozco and Pavel Saltwater, as they race to save lives from an enemy determined to extirpate the human race from this and every universe. Mankind's enemies, including human storm troopers, are on the move, and once again humanity is a few steps behind. The fighter, Detective Orozco, hero of the two previous novels in this series, "The Human Struggle," is confronted with finding homes for the millions of fighters' orphans, stranded by the enemy's assault on their alternate universe, an assault that is leading to its collapse. Orozco's transuniverse orphanage is swamped, even assisted by angels, and to make matters worse, another fighter, hero of "Zone of Illusion," Pavel Saltwater, must crack the code of how, precisely, the enemy is destabilizing multiple human realities throughout the cosmos. And the prospects look grim.
Second in "The Human Struggle" series, this is a sci-fi fantasy about the collapse of an alternate reality and the human effort to avert it. In this novel, fighters attempt defend human life in a universe contiguous to earth's. The enemy, determined to extirpate humanity from this and all alternate realities, is sacking, burning, conquering and murdering his way through the cosmos, and now enemy storm troopers have found a doorway into earth and are filtering into our world. Fighters and the visionaries they work with, guardians, struggle to keep them at bay, while a lonely few of their number must journey far behind enemy lines to destroy the power which keeps humanity losing the war that has been fought off-world for millennia. From the first shot at the story's opening to the search for a guardian replaced by his doubles, to the white-hot fireballs with which angels destroy enemy commanders, "Zone of Illusion" portrays a non-stop sci-fi/fantasy war of the worlds.
The essays deal with four Renaissance literary masterpieces of humanism, by Cervantes, Rabelais, Erasmus and Boccaccio, the work of a contemporary fiction writer, Ozick, and an analysis of Augustine's Confessions. Altogether these stories and essays make for an extremely various and compelling mix.
Dead in Iraq traces the lives of eight young friends and their disastrous group decision, after 9/11, to join the army. Full of humor when depicting their lives at home, the story becomes much more serious when the new recruits arrive in Iraq. Structured around eight portraits, one for each young man and his family, the story moves quickly from impulsive decisions, made in anger and haste, to its catastrophic conclusion.