An airliner and a private plane collide in midair, and the jumbo jet is badly damaged. Computers predict, to the minute, when fuel exhaustion will result in a flameout and a crash. But the jumbo jet is a British-designed Trent 270 with some unusual structural features. And the pilot is Lucky Doyle, a throwback to aviation's golden days, who trusts his experience and his instincts more than the electronic wonders of a microchipped ``glass cockpit.'' This unpretentious techno-thriller becomes a gripping page-turner as Doyle leads his flight crew and the Trent design staff in an increasingly desperate series of improvisations to bring the plane down with its passengers alive. Davis ( The Pilot ), a pilot, presents his fictional aircraft convincingly. His real success, however, is a stripped-down plot that affirms in every scene the essence of the techno-thriller genre: that we are ultimately responsible for the machines we create. (May)
Lucky Doyle is flying a revolutionary new airliner out of Tulsa when a private pilot crashes into his plane. The liner continues to fly, but can't land. The 300 aboard it appear doomed. Doyle, the airport, the plane's designers, and the airline's British ownership must devise and execute a plan to rescue the craft from apparently certain disaster. Davis ( The Pilot, LJ 7/76) has involved virtually every aviation issue possible in this somewhat overheated melodrama. Dramatizations of engineering and design arguments and authenticity of technology work well. Recommended for public libraries where there is demand for aviation thrillers.-- Edwin B. Burgess, U.S. Army TRALINET Ctr., Ft. Monroe, Va.