Futuretrack 5 by Robert Westall
Kestrel Books, 1983
Price I paid: none
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Henry Kitson makes his first mistake when he scores a hundred per cent in his exams. Not for him therefore the glamorous cushy career pattern of most of his contemporaries. Promoted to Tech, he is equipped with a white coat and a clipboard and becomes one of that small body who keep the country’s computerized living systems going.
His second mistake is going on the razzle. In London, where survival depends on skill and daring and the population is controlled by fear and sensationalism, Kitson becomes pinball champion and meets blond, leather-clad Keri, London’s bike-racing champion of Futuretrack 5.
Together they go north in an uneasy partnership. And what they learn as they go, they don’t like, for this is Britain of the twenty-first century and if you question the system too much you come to regret it. But who does know the answers? And what is Kitson’s destined role? As a fortune teller predicts, “You’ll regret what you’ll do for the rest of your born days. And you’ll have plenty of time to regret it.”
In this major new novel, Robert Westall has brilliantly created a future world which is all too plausible.
The Mansions of Space by John Morressy
Ace Science Fiction, 1983
Price I paid: $1.50
Jod Enskeline, master of the driveship Rimjack, was a free trader traveling from one alien planet to another in his restless search of the universe.
Then he landed on Peter’s Rock, a forgotten planet of humans, ruled by priests and harboring a treasure of books holding all the extinct languages of Earth. The books would bring Jod a fortune, but in return for this uncountable wealth, he must take priest-voyagers on a dangerous mission—to find the Holy Shroud, the last relic of an ancient faith lost somewhere in the universe!
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Streetlethal by Steven Barnes
Ace Books, 1983
Price I paid: 90¢
Los Angeles is a teeming metropolis with a rotten core: Deep Maze, where the Thai-VI ghouls—the disease-spreading Spiders—roam. Here the all-powerful Ortegas rule over their empire of drugs, prostitution, and black-market human organs “donated” by their helpless victims.
All Aubry Knight, the former weightless boxing champion, wants is to be left alone. But you’re either with the Ortegas or against them, so they made his life a hell. First they tried to control his mind, then they tried to reduce him to “spare parts.”
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