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THE VALLEY-WESTSIDE WAR
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Science Fiction
Turtledove adds another installment to his Crosstime Traffic series with a cautionary tale about what could happen if two major powers went to war in a contemporary world. Although the late 21st-century technology isn't explained, the story is plausible and enjoyable.
Liz Mendoza and her parents work for Crosstime Traffic, a company that sends people to alternate worlds to sell goods and do research. On a grant to learn what happened in an alternate reality where the United States and the Soviet Union nuked each other in 1967, Liz is researching in what's left of the UCLA library.
When war breaks out between two of the territories, the Mendozas are caught in the middle. Valley troops occupy the Westside, and soldier Dan takes a shine to Liz. Caught harboring a spy, the Mendozas make an emergency transport to their world. With their grant running out, though, they return. A dangerous night trip through a fiery waste zone brings Liz back to UCLA, where she discovers information that may explain where this world went so wrong. (TOR, Jul., 288 pp., $24.95)
Reviewed By: Karen Sweeny-Justice
Published: July 2008