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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews

       
Reclamation

Copyright 1996 by Sarah Zettel

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SOJALS rating:     
one SOJALS point one SOJALS point one SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Very good (3/5)

I first read this in June 2001.

The Realm Of Nameless Powers is a primitive planet barren except for one small area of land trapped within massive mountains. The four million inhabitants exists in a caste-based medieval society. The state religion ensures that nothing weakens the rigid enforcement of the ancient way of life.

The Rhudolant Vitae are an ancient branch of humanity. They believe themselves to be the master race. They lost their home world thousands of years before during a slave rebellion, but dream of its return. by whatever means necessary. In the meantime they have worked themselves into positions of great power and influence in the civilised worlds.

Now the Vitae have discovered that the Realm is, in fact, their lost home world and that its inhabitants are therefore their possessions, their slaves. The Vitae will abandon everything else to retake the world and everything in it.

Eric Born was once a teacher, a privileged position, in the Realm. He fled his homeworld to escape the suffocating beliefs of the archaic religion.

Arla was an untouchable on the planet. She was a slave to everyone, unable to protest and unable to better herself and her family. She too attempts to escape, but less than successfully.

Eric and Arla will eventually meet and together the two have to work out how to save the home world they abandoned.

Well, that doesn't give any idea how good this book is. It is classic action SF: exciting adventure and great aliens with well-thought alien, and human, psychology. Eric, Arla and their supporters are well-drawn, convincing characters. I have to say that this is better than Zettel's next novel "Fool's War".

What's it got? faster-than-light travel, artificial intelligence, telekinesis, tough girls, bad guys and big guns.

Loaded on the 29th June 2001.
    
Cover of Reclamation
Cover art by Donato and Don Puckey

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