One of the few downsides to the end of the Cold War was, at least for me, the falling off of espionage thrillers. The ever-present menace which lent so much significance to the old spy stories is just gone from today’s world. Or is it?
Dangerous Vision, a story of corporate espionage, is set in 1999. Funding has ended for KGB psychiatrist Sergei Prokov’s psychic warfare program and an oil multinational, Axi, hires him to work in New York City.
Psychic ability tests are conducted in the local colleges. Among those chosen for training as remote viewers are Jim Craig, an aspiring actor, and Cathy Alvarez, a math student.
Jim often practices what he calls “imaginative realism,” picturing himself an animal such as a bear or an elephant, and holding his concentration even on the subway. Cathy is the only one who sees what he’s doing.
The psychic training is disturbing to Cathy, as she confronts her own buried past. Then Sergei uses her to help locate a downed plane: not to rescue the passengers but to have them killed. She quits the job immediately.
Jim stays with the program, and his acting career takes off. Sergei’s group is now involved in spying on and infiltrating a California biotech company, Proktec which has developed a bioreactor that produces cheap hydrogen for fuel. Axi has marked Proktec for a takeover.
Cathy knows the biotech company’s survival is of great importance, and she keeps watching from afar. She stays in touch with Jim. After witnessing murder, Jim realizes that Cathy is right. The two get on a plane for California, intending to help Proktec.
A large part of the Dangerous Vision narrative is seen through the eyes of these remote viewers. Readers find the new technique quite compelling.
A sequel is planned which will follow the main characters, and venture farther into the paranormal.