T2: Infiltrator [NOOK Book]


Sarah Connor and her son, John, know the grim tomorrow that awaits their species if the Cyberdyne Corporation gets their Skynet system on-line. Targeted for annihilation because of their future destinies, the Connors have already survived two separate attempts on their lives by advanced Terminator killing machines. But enough T-800 detritus remains from their last life-and-death struggle to enable Cyberdyne to recover. The nightmare is back on track. And the most fearsome and relentless cyborg weapon of all has ...

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T2: Infiltrator

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Sarah Connor and her son, John, know the grim tomorrow that awaits their species if the Cyberdyne Corporation gets their Skynet system on-line. Targeted for annihilation because of their future destinies, the Connors have already survived two separate attempts on their lives by advanced Terminator killing machines. But enough T-800 detritus remains from their last life-and-death struggle to enable Cyberdyne to recover. The nightmare is back on track. And the most fearsome and relentless cyborg weapon of all has been dispatched through time to ensure Skynet's victory: a machine so like its human prey that detection is virtually impossible. Considered a dangerous terrorist by the U.S. government and hiding out in Paraguay, Sarah sees another T-800 similar to the cybernetic killer from whom she once narrowly escaped. But while his form and features will eventually be duplicated on many Terminator units, former counterterrorism operative Dieter von Rossback is very much a man, irresistibly drawn to the puzzling, beautiful, deadly serious Sarah Connor and her brilliant teenage son. And once Sarah reveals her dark history and awakens him to the impending possible extermination of all human life, Dieter is drawn to her revolution as well. But the machine masters of the near future have ensured that they will not be thwarted again. A new breed of enforcer, on designed to effortlessly infiltrate the ranks of the enemy, has been firmly entrenched in the uppermost level of Cyberdyne Corporation. With a vengeance-seeking FBI agent on a tight leash and the inexhaustible resources of Cyberdyne to support the hunt for the Connors and their allies, the 1-950 Infiltrator is relentless, programmed to pursue Skynet's goal until all targets are dead. But unlike its technological predecessors, the Infiltrator understands how humans think and feel...and she truly enjoys the blood and the chase. Exploding out of the long shadows cast by Terminator 2: Judgement Day—the cinematic action masterwork that rocked the world-T2: Infiltrator marks a bold new beginning in the stunning apocalyptic epic that has already become a legend.

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Editorial Reviews

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The Barnes & Noble Review
S. M. Stirling contributes a welcome, but puzzling, entry into James Cameron's world of the Terminator. It's been widely rumored that the next Terminator movie, currently in development, deals with the continued story of Sarah and John Connor. Some common rumors that I've heard are that Arnold Schwarzenegger, in one form or another, is back as a protector to the Connors; they are to face a new threat in the form of a female terminator; and the events will occur prior to the apocalyptic world of post-nuclear Los Angeles depicted in the earlier two films. Funny how these three points serve as the major skeleton of Stirling's new book, T2: Infiltrator. This is clearly not the movie tie-in version. Or is it?

But first, a bit of history: Cyberdyne Systems, a computer research company creates a defense system called Skynet that, in the interests of eliminating human error, removes humans entirely from the decision of when to launch nuclear weapons. This system is too advanced for humanity's good and, soon after going online, it decides to launch its missiles -- setting off a worldwide nuclear war. At its conclusion, Skynet remains fully intact, sentient, completely integrated with machinery of all kinds -- and determined to make mankind extinct. While the world suffers from nuclear fallout, Skynet automates weapon facilities and creates and unleashes equipment designed to destroy all remaining vestiges of humanity. Skynet's mechanical minions, the Terminators among them, succeed in wiping out all but a guerrilla movement led by John Connor, who provides the sole resistance against the machines.

Ultimately, Connor wins and Skynet sends Terminators back in time with the hopes of changing this future. By killing Sarah Connor and her son John in our present, Skynet will prevent the development of this deadly duo and will ensure its own existence in the future. John himself, aware of these attempts on his past, moves to block Skynet by sending a rewired Terminator of his own back in time to aid his adolescent self in evening out the odds.

In Stirling's incarnation, T2: Infiltrator, we find the Connors, 10 years after the events of T2: Judgment Day, running black market weapons out of Paraguayan jungles. Wanted for the destruction of various Cyberdyne installations, they live disguised and in exile, fearful they will be arrested by unbelieving authorities. But unbeknownst to them, a new threat has arrived on the horizon -- sent by the future Skynet whose very creation they have been unable to prevent. The character's name is Serena Burns, an alias for the prototypical Infiltrator-950. The I-950 is mostly human, but enhanced with an impressive array of useful cyborg components. This configuration allows the I-950 to more easily infiltrate human populations. And infiltrate she does: as Cyberdyne's own Chief of Security! Sent from the future, she is charged with watching over the fledgling company and ensuring that Skynet itself develops into the entity that it eventually becomes. But she also possesses the ability and the equipment to create several additional allies under her personal command: more Terminators.

In the Connor corner, however, is a retired Austrian antiterrorist agent, Dietrich von Rossbach, who, to their initial horror, looks exactly like -- you guessed it -- Sarah's ruthlessly cold hunter in the first Terminator, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger! How this is all explained I'll leave to S. M. Stirling. And whether any of this bears any resemblance to the upcoming Terminator 3 movie will have to go unanswered for the time being. Until that time rolls around, allow me to state that this is a very enjoyable entry into an already terrific franchise. (Peter Russo)

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Based on the world created in the motion picture written by James Cameron and William Wisher, this superior franchise fiction is the next best thing to Terminator 3. Stirling (Against the Tide of Years, etc.) is a skillful writer of action SF who has studied both the first Terminator (1984) and Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) carefully. He gets the details right, and he's also thought about how, after two failures, the evil master computer of the future would modify the robots it sends back in time to kill its nemesis before he grows up. The new Terminator is female, mechanically and genetically enhanced but able to masquerade as a normal woman. She interacts with and attempts to manipulate a large cast of characters that includes, naturally, Sarah Conner and her now-teenaged son, John. Mother and son imagine they're safely hidden in Paraguay, their anti-machine crusade over, until they are noticed by a retired secret agent who happens to be a double for the nasty Arnold Schwarzenegger/first Terminator. When he innocently discovers who they are, the new Terminator also finds out and sends mechanical assassins after them. And the novel, which has been moving along steadily and efficiently, shifts into high gear. Stirling structures the plot well, and the action builds to a gripping climax which doesn't really conclude much, since this series obviously is intended to run many more books. If they're done this well, it will be an enjoyable ride. (May 8) Forecast: Robots from the future won't be able to stop this sequel to the $204-million domestic grossing T2 film from charging up genre bestseller charts. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061797576
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/13/2009
  • Series: Terminator 2 Series , #1
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 544
  • Sales rank: 477,745
  • File size: 783 KB

Meet the Author

S.M. Stirling

A well-regarded author of alternate history science-fiction novels, S.M. Stirling has written more than twenty-five books, including acclaimed collaborations with Anne McCaffrey, Jerry Pournelle, and David Drake. His most recent novels are T2: Infiltrator, The Peshawar Lancers, and the Island in the Sea of Time trilogy.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Cincinnati: 2021, Post-Judgement Day

Multiple sensors scanned the broken wasteland of the ruined city as the Hunter/Killer's treads rolled its massive steel body over the rusting wrecks of automobiles, crushing the bones of their long-dead drivers. The tortured metal squealing of its passage frightened flocks of birds into flight and sent more earthbound animals scurrying for cover.

Piles of scorched and shattered brick and concrete, twisted steel, and broken glass blocked the HK's view to one side or the other. Sometimes it made its way through canyons of rubble. Then, inexplicably, a wall that had somehow survived the blast wave would stand before it, only to be shattered by the machine's passage.

The HK's satellite feed had shown what appeared to be massive human troop movements in this area. Thus far no information the machine had collected verified those reports.

It checked its omni-directional sensor array for a possible equipment failure. All systems were on-line, no failure detected. No targets detected. The machine reviewed the satellite information indicating human activity to the northeast. The machine continued on its way, tireless, unrelenting, utterly lacking in self-awareness.

Until Skynet touched it. Then the most brilliant, and from a human standpoint, malevolent intelligence ever created looked out through the HK's sensor windows. It wondered why satellite information disagreed so completely with the reality before it. There were no humans here.

Until recently there never had been; humans avoided the big cities that had perished in the first wave of nuclearexplosions. Skynet knew that they feared exposure to lingering radiation. That was why Skynet opted to place its satellite receivers, its antennae and repair stations, within their ruined confines.

But now, at the orders of their charismatic leader, humans almost swarmed over these once-deserted places. Skynet's killing machines -- its appendages -- had been destroyed, the satellite arrays and antennae -- its eyes and ears -- had been crippled.

Somehow, because of John Connor, the humans had rallied. They were fighting back.

Skynet switched its consciousness to the processor of a nearby T-90. The stripped metal skeleton of this first in the series of Terminators reflected sunlight in brilliant sparkles, as though its chassis had been polished. It marched through piles of bones, its heavy feet snapping them like dry twigs, and climbed through the rubble, checking the small spaces in which humans might hide, head turning from side to side ceaselessly.

It found neither sign nor sight of humans.

Skynet considered this as it rode the T-90's body. If there were no humans present, and the satellite continued to report their presence while diagnostics found no systems failure either in space or on the ground, then only one conclusion was possible. The humans had found some way to directly interfere with Skynet's feed. A variation on signal jamming.

This could seriously impair its ability to defend itself. Skynet recognized the tactical importance of this. The humans would be able to feed it false information at will. As they appeared to be doing now. The giant computer began searching for anomalous signals being generated in the area but found nothing.

A human would have been both frightened and frustrated. Skynet simply instituted a new routine, directing the T-90 to go directly to the ground-based antennae located at the center of this dead place and begin searching.

Lisa Weinbaum hunkered down as low as she could and checked her watch. Only forty seconds since the last time she'd looked.

Beside her the small box she'd wired in to Skynet's antennae and signaling array blinked its two lights and hummed quietly. Its purpose was to feed false information to Skynet. The particular scenario it was playing now should ensure her, and more importantly, its safety.

This was only a test, but the techs said it would require at least half an hour of running time to be sure it was working. Five minutes more and she was out of here...she hoped.

Lisa herself was a tech in training, which was why she'd been accepted when she volunteered. They couldn't risk losing a full tech, and she had enough education to understand the instructions her trainers gave her. It lent the mission an extra edge. And, as it turned out, once she was on-site, implementing the unit had required some jiggering to make things work properly. But so far all signs pointed to a successful test.

If it was, then getting out of here ought to be a walk in the park.

Whatever that means, she thought, scanning the lumpy horizon. It was something her dad used to say, one of those sayings where you picked up the meaning from context. Like piping hot, or having your cake and eating it. What the hell was cake anyway?

She checked the time. She'd succeeded in distracting herself for thirty seconds this time. If the test was working then Skynet's forces should be stumbling to the northeast, searching for a mythical force of humans advancing on the city.

She heard the sound of metal striking stone and her breath froze in her chest. Weinbaum. stretched her neck forward, straining to hear. Was it something falling, or was it something coming?

Cautiously she backed away from the open service hatch toward the unit. The techs might want half an hour of running time, but they were going to get a few minutes less. Weinbaum stood beside the console and began to dismantle the jury-rigged connections she'd made. With quickfingered efficiency she had the unit disconnected in seconds.

Then metal struck stone again. She let out her breath in a little huff, feeling strangely hollow from the chest down and surprisingly calm. I'm caught, she thought. What to do? She couldn't let them find the unit.

Weinbaum looked around at the explosives she'd wired the place with. T2: Infiltrator. Copyright © by S.M. Stirling. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 15 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 25 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2003

    Good Stuff

    The Terminator in this book seems like one of the best logical creations that Skynet has created thus far. Due to this and other elements, the story is well written and should please the vast majority, if not all, Terminator fans (both casual and obsessive) extensively. There has yet to be a killing machine in the Terminator saga (both in the movies and the books) that has dissapointed me. Being more than a casual fan of the Terminator series, I include Serena (the killing machine in the novel) among my favorite killing machines. I highly suggest to fans of the Terminator series to check this book out, although insist to keep an open mind and be patient, since the author inevitably satisfies all readers with a thorough explanation of his intent as the novel progresses. After reading this, I was left with an enhanced desire for more Terminator stories due to the author's ability to deliver a good one.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2003

    If you like the story you will enjoy this book.

    I picked this out mainly being that this is such a great and frightening concept. The story started a bit slow, but then picked up with insight into the future through the eyes of the machines. Also you learn a little bit about 'Arnold's' character. John takes on a stronger presence to the story as well. I am afraid that the up coming movie will leave me a little disappointed after reading this. But I'm already disappointed in finding out that James Cameron wasn't the director. :(

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2011

    Excellent story to pick up from T2 the movie

    This is what T3: Judgement Day should have been. I have a knack for figuring out what will happen next in a story and I was totally thrown off with this. I literally couldn't put it down (this applies to every book in this server actually: T2:Rising Storm and T2: Future War)

    Stirling makes you feel for the characters. He even makes the events completely plausible even if you've seen the movie Judgement Day. The story moves well with very few slow spots. Felt like I was watching a movie. In fact, I forwent watching TV to get thru this series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2009


    I've just finished reading "T2 Infiltrator" and have "Rising Storm" and "Future War" waiting in the wings.

    The beginning of "Infiltrator" was kind of all over the place, with the different characters and locations, but it all came together in the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2006

    Disappointing And Slow...

    Taking a long time to introduce the familiar Connor characters whose operative psychologies should be long understood by any dedicated 'Terminator' fan readership, _T2: Infiltrator_ seems to thrive on displays of prolonged illogical-for-context abstract behaviors by both new and old faces. Specifically, S.M. Stirling seems to want to emphasize 'good guy' characterization to counteract self-applied labels on the part of people whose moral motives should not be important given the circumstances he drops them into (a blackops federal agent that doesn't want to arrest a 'known terrorist', a fugitive in hiding who doesn't LEAVE when the cop moves in next door etc. etc.) With about 50% of the writing taken up by what Stirling himself cutely ascribes to 'maudlin' interpersonal relations, T2:I's most interesting scenes involve the Terminators continuing literary development as thinking machines and in particular the future-war Skynet conversations with a new model, the 'I-950'. Unfortunately, the integration of cause and effect doesn't have Cameron's masterful stroke behind it (it takes 2/3rds of the book to discover that the robots are talking to each other over our VOIP networking using cellphone chips) that causes SOD to compress in on the reader for extended periods of 'wonder why' failed exposition. Of particular discomfort is the notion that while Skynet is losing the war, it chooses to waste time on an 8 year development process for 'human' cloned Terminators which are entirely undetectable in the future but in the past continue to be hated by dogs. While the climactic build is the typical roller-coaster of any thriller, the outcome seems highly convenient if not contrived in the way it allows mere humans to destroy not 1 but 6 Terminators. Saves John from three 'T-101s' (after having been shot by the worlds most powerful handgun) when a human not in their chain of command demands that they stop. And then provides for yet more unbelievable morality play leading up to Sarah Connor's recapture under conditions where interrogatin, torture and betrayal of associates is almost a given. Coming off as extreme writer's license hiding under a thin camouflage of 'fate' inherent to quantum super imposition of timelines, this book drags in the beginning and crashes, brainlessly, to an ill conceived end. _Not Recommended_.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2003

    It's about time!!!

    I'm so glad someone finally decided to write a book about the Terminators. This one was great and fit perfectly into the Terminator story line and world of judgement day. Loved it!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2002

    A great wait until the movie

    When I picked up this book, I thought it would be another dumb Terminator rip-off. I was wrong! This book has everything. Action, Adventure, Sex (and lots of it too!), and Supense. It definiately is worthy of being the sequal to Terminator 2. The only thing that Striling has down bad is some of the dialect. Occasionally, some of the dialog from Sarah and John is really corny and stupid. But it only happens a few times. Still, great book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2001

    HE IS BACK!!

    If you've been holding you're breath for a new Terminator movie then you can exhale because Skynet has unleashed a new Terminator on the world and SHE is more cunning and dangerous than anything you've ever seen before. Until T3 this is your best bet for a Terminator fix.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2001

    A new good book , T2 style

    I think that this book is very good if you liked T2 you will like this book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2001



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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent T2

    In the present, Cyberdene built a computer chip to power Skynet, a military computer that eliminates the human error. Problems begin when Skynet turns sentient and attacks its former masters deeming them unfit tolive. Sarah Connor and her son have knowledge of a future where the lad will lead the human resistance against Skynet. Sarah felt that with the death of the Skynet creator and the Cyberdene complex burned to the ground, the future would change. However, the American government declares the Connors as terrorists forcing them to flee to Paraguay. <P>In 2021 John Connor, the resistance leader, tries to destroy Skynet, which has created a new weapon to end all counter insurgence. Cyborgs are attached to a neural link to send Serena back to the present to insure Skynet is built. The weapon system Serena becomes head of Cyberdene security and actively tries to kill the Connors, once agin having Sarah and John fighting for their lives and that of the future of humanity. <P> It has been about a decade since T2 hit the screen, yet S.M. Stirling captures the essence of the movie while taking it one step further beyond the icons. The story line is as exciting and fluid as the two movies so that even James Cameron will not want to terminate this series; judging it as worthy. <P>Harriet Klausner

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