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Man of Two Worlds
By John Russell Fearn

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Man of Two Worlds

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Man of Two Worlds
By John Russell Fearn
Linford Mystery Library: Large Print (2009)
ISBN: 978-1-84782-712-8
Genre: Mystery, Suspense, Science Fiction

Reviewed by Herbert White - June 22, 2009

What would you do if one day you awoke to discover that you could see into the future? For Walter Cardish, the answer was amazingly simple. He renamed himself 'The Great Volta: Prognosticator' and set about making as much money, as fast as he could. Cardish came upon this amazing power by shear accident. One day he was his ordinary humdrum self, until his deary existence was changed by a chance meeting with a bolt of lightning. He awoke some days later, in a hospital, with the ability to see into the future.

Unbeknownst to Cardish, his new powers were the unintended result of Mazorian scientists messing around with a new dimensional portal that they were experimenting with. The storm that housed the lighting that struck Cardish was in reality the physical manifestation of the Mazor's testing of the Portal. What resulted was that on Earth, Cardish was hit by lighting and developed precognition. Meanwhile, on Mazor, Cardish also appeared, a seemingly exact duplicate of his Earthly self, albeit one that had a translucent quality. To complicate this dimensional dislocation, Cardish was aware of both of his existences!

Living in two worlds at once would drive most people crazy. For Cardish, the adjustment goes amazingly smooth as he settles into his dual lives, each incarnation helping the other one. On Earth, he sets out in his new career as a Prognosticator, and on Mazor as the most liberated of guinea pigs. Along the way, however, Cardish makes enemies, enemies that are willing to kill to settle real or imagined grudges. In addition, Cardish's shrewish wife and arrogant son don't quite know what to make of the man. They know he has changed in some mysterious way. However, they cannot quite put their finger on all the hows and whys, and this scares them, a state that Cardish relishes in seeing them in.

Despite his new found fame, Cardish faces more difficulties than his dislocated existence. Firstly, how long can a body survive living in two places at once? Can he ever get his two selves reintegrated with each other? Is there anything he can do to prevent falling prey to his detractors? And when the police get the notion that he might be causing the misfortunes he is predicating, can he convince them that he is innocent?

Man of Two Worlds is one of those fun reads that is perfect for those times when you want to indulge in an intriguing story but don't have the energy to invest a great deal of brain power into solving any riddles. This book was written by the prolific writer, John Russell Fearn, and like most of his science fiction mysteries, this book is well-paced, humourous, and a pleasing mix of standard mystery fare with ample science fiction elements. First published in 1953, Man of Two Worlds was originally published under one of Fearn's numerous pen names, in this case that of Vargo Statten. If you did not get the chance to read this book when it was first released, or want to relive a bit of the past, give this book a read. You'll find it just as intriguing and suspenseful to read, as it was when it was first published. Enjoy!

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