The Road to Damascus

Keith Laumers Bolos are Back
and New York Times Best-Selling
Author John Ringo has Signed on
with the Bolo Brigade!

When a ruthless political regime seizes power on a world struggling to recover from alien invasion, a former war hero finds herself leading a desperate band of freedom fighters. Kafari Khrustinova, who fought Deng infantry from farmhouses and barns, finds herself struggling to free her homeworld from an unholy political alliance, headed by the charismatic and ambitious Vittori Santorini, which has seduced her young daughter with its propaganda and subverted the planets Bolo, using the war machine to crush all political opposition. To free her homeworld, Kafari must somehow cripple or kill the Bolo she once called friend. Unit SOL-0045, Sonny, is a Mark XX Bolo, self-aware and intelligent. When Sonnys human commander is forced off-world, Sonny tries to navigate his way through ambiguous moral and legal issues, sinking into deep confusion and electronic misery. He eventually faces a dark night of the soul, with no guarantee that he will understandlet alone makethe right decision. And caught in the middle of this volatile battlefield is Yalena Khrustinova, Kafaris young daughter. Will she open her eyes in time to save herselfand millions of innocentsor will Santorinis relentless brainwashing campaign continue to blind her while the tyrant engineers the ultimate destruction of a helpless and enslaved population?

Praise for the Science Fiction of John Ringo

MARVELOUS! David Weber

As much action as you could hope for. . . . And then theres that quirky sense of humor running like a vein of gold under the mayhem. Eric Flint

Explosive. . . . Fans of strong military SF will appreciate Ringos lively narrative and flavorful characters. . . . One of the best new practitioners of military SF. Publishers Weekly

. . . since [Ringos] imagination, clearly influenced by Kipling and rock and roll, is fertile, and his storytelling skill sound, [When the Devil Dances] is irresistible. Booklist

[Ringo demonstrates a] flair for fast-paced military sf peopled with three-dimensional characters and spiced with personal drama as well as tactical finesse. Library Journal

If Tom Clancy were writing SF, it would read much like John Ringo . . . good reading with solid characterizationsa rare combination. Philadelphia Weekly Press

Ringo provides a textbook example of how a novel in the military SF subgenre should be written. . . . For those who have read everything David Drake has written or who may have wished that Tom Clancy, Larry bond or Harold Coyle would write SF, Ringo provides whats needed. . . .Crackerjack storytelling. Starlog

Cover art by David Mattingly

ORDER Hardcover

This is a work of fiction. All the characters and events portrayed in this book are fictional, and any resemblance to real people or incidents is purely coincidental.

First hardcover printing, March 2004

Distributed by Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020

Printed in the United States of America

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Ringo, John, 1963-

The road to Damascus / John Ringo, Linda Evans.
p. cm.
"A Baen Books original."
ISBN 0-7434-7187-3
1. Life on other planets--Fiction. 2. Tanks (Military
science)--Fiction. 3. Women soldiers--Fiction. 4. Space
warfare--Fiction. I. Evans, Linda. II. Title.

PS3568.I577R63 2004

ISBN: 0-7434-7187-3

Copyright 2004 by John Ringo & Linda Evans

All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this book or portions thereof in any form.

A Baen Books Original
Baen Publishing Enterprises
P.O. Box 1403
Riverdale, NY 10471

Production by Windhaven Press
Auburn, NH

Electronic version by Baen Books

For Aubrey Jean Hollingsworth, our second source of sunshine, with endless thanks to Bob Holingsworth, Susan Collingwood, John Ringo, and Toni Weisskopf for patience, forbearance, and the ideas that brought this story to life. Lind Evans


The Bolo series:

The Compleat Bolo by Keith Laumer
Created by Keith Laumer:

The Honor of the Regiment
The Unconquerable
The Triumphant by David Weber & Linda Evans
Last Stand
Old Guard
Cold Steel
Bolo Brigade by William H. Keith, Jr.
Bolo Rising by William H. Keith, Jr.
Bolo Strike by William H. Keith, Jr.
The Road to Damascus by John Ringo & Linda Evans

BAEN BOOKS by John Ringo

There Will Be Dragons
Emerald Sea
A Hymn Before Battle
Gust Front
When the Devil Dances
Hell's Faire
Cally's War
(with Julie Cochrane, forthcoming)
The Hero (with Michael Z. Williamson, forthcoming)

BAEN BOOKS by Linda Evans

The Time Scout Series with Robert Asprin

Time Scout
Wagers of Sin
Ripping Time
The House That Jack Built
For King and Country
(with Robert Asprin)
Far Edge of Darkness