“ Genre: Crime / Thriller „
Chiller is the debut novel from Sterling Blake, a pseudonym of established Sci-Fi author Gregory Benford, and tells the story of the future of Cryonics; the science of freezing the bodies of the recently dead so that they can be defrosted and restored to life at a much later date....
Dr.Alex Cowell is at the forefront of Cryonics, working closely with his Medical colleagues to provide a service for those with the money to afford it. But there are plenty who see Cryonics as an abomination and would like nothing more than to see the company he works for, Immortaility Incorporated, go under. The Reverend Montana is their most outspoken adversary who preaches the bible at them and slams the good work they are doing at every opportunity. But he is not alone....
Dr.Susan Hagerty, a part-time consultant for Immortality Incorporated, faces her own opposition in her workplace at UCI Hospital from those who resent the experimental techniques she is trying out in her own spare time. They neglect to stop and consider the Medical benefits and advantages to what she is doing, dismissing her work as pseudo-science.
And the people at Immortality Incorporated face other dangers too when they arouse the interest and obsession of a deadly killer who fashions himself as an Angel Of Death working under orders from God himself.
The end result: Chiller is a highly competent and ambitious Medical Thriller that combines established and well researched scientific facts about Cryonics (up to date right up until the time of publication back in the nineties) with a great Science-Fiction story that spans a couple of generations. I really loved this the first time I read it and still find it a gripping and engrossing read now. The plot is simple and easy to follow and the science not that complicated that it bogs down the story and alienates its readers! The book has hardly aged and is as revelant now as it was then, concerning itself with its issues of not whether Cryonics might work or not but with its bigger moral address of whether we should even be tryingin the first place with the world's increasing over-population crisis and enviromental concerns.
This is the only one of Benford's books that I have ever read but would certainly persuade me to read more. It is simply sublime in every way and a real joy to read.....highly recommended!!