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Hancock has cleaned up at the Christy Awards for excellence in Christian fiction with four previous visionary novels (most recently, Shadow over Kiriath), but this one falls short. Researcher Lacey McHenry has a lowly position at the cutting edge Kendall-Jakes Longevity Institute, where a peculiar intruder sets off a complex chain of events that draws together McHenry and researcher Cameron Reinhardt- a man with a powder keg of a past-as the two try to solve the riddles that keep cropping up in their workplace. Hancock has a plot so complicated that a lot of elements are unsatisfactorily resolved or are simple red herrings: Lacey's abusive ex-husband, a host of intriguing but underdeveloped secondary characters, military action in Afghanistan that is part of Reinhardt's past. Narrative energy instead goes to didacticism: Reinhardt, an evangelical Christian, argues with his fellow scientists about evolution in an episode that's more polemic than dramatic. Visionary fiction is a narrow niche, and the Christian biblical literalism driving key action in the plot won't do much to enlarge the audience. (July)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.