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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews


Copyright 1997 by Ian Watson

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SOJALS rating:     
one SOJALS point one SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Mediocre (2/5)

I first read this in January 2000.

5000 Marcus is a Roman centurion fighting in Britain against the rebels led by Queen Boudicca. Tom Ryan loves the Latin language, but never expected to find himself speaking to an ancient Roman. Mary, Tom's brother, had forlornly hoped that in leaving Ireland and coming to mainland they'd left the IRA behind.

Certainly no-one ever expected to have so much excitement in Milton Keynes nor in Belgium, to where our protagonists make their way.

I have had a profound respect for Ian Watson since I read "The Embedding" may years ago. Sadly since that book, I have been less than excited by his work, although of course I always buy his books on the principle that that one day he's going to write another masterpiece. Well, "Oracle" isn't a masterpiece, but it is rather good. It's a old-fashioned English SF novel with an entertaining plot and not too grand a coverage - it doesn't involve the collision of collapsing nebulae at the end of time, or interstellar space war - just a very human tale of time travel.

Loaded on the 16th May 2001.
Cover of Oracle
Cover art by Splash

Reviews of other works by Ian Watson:
Chekhov's Journey
The Flies Of Memory

Reviews of other works with covers by Roy Birgo and Splash:
The Fountains Of Paradise