While two very different men-Counce, who has strange powers and a formidable intellect, and Bassett, a master of money, finance, and business-are locked in a battle for supremacy over the inhabited worlds of the galaxy, an unknown threat to their power lurks in the shadows: secretive aliens who have a takeover plan of their own. John Brunner delivers fast action as a galaxy-size drama and cosmic surprises unfold one after another, leading to a heart-pounding climax. For each generation, there is a writer meant to bend the rules of what we know. Hugo Award winner (Best Novel, Stand on Zanzibar) and British science fiction master John Brunner remains one of the most influential and respected authors of all time, and now many of his classic works are being reintroduced. For readers familiar with his vision, it is a chance to reexamine his thoughtful worlds and words, while for new readers, Brunner's work proves itself the very definition of timeless.