Up to Eric's Home Page To Index Thu May 24 09:55:05 EDT 1990

Raymond's Reviews #58

%T Doctor's Orders
%A Diane Duane
%I Pocket Books
%D June 1990
%O paperback, US$4.50
%P 291
%G 0-671-66189-2

In case you haven't noticed yet, Diane Duane is one helluva fine writer. In fact, she's so good that she can turn the invitation to hack-work that Yet Another Star Trek Novel presents into an armature for some of the best-detailed and most compelling world-building in the field today. She did it in The Wounded Sky. She did it big-time in Spock's World -- and she does it again in Doctor's Orders. Even if you didn't like the TV series, buy this one and enjoy.

%T The Year of the Quiet Sun
%A Wilson Tucker
%I Collier/Macmillan
%D May 1990
%O paperback, US$4.50
%P 252
%G 0-02-029895-1

Another handsome reissue from the Collier Nucleus series, of 1970 time-travel story I'd heard was a minor classic. Sadly, I found it so dated I couldn't finish it -- the plot, which involves time travelers exploring forward from 1978 into 1980 and beyond, necessarily gets into a great deal of predictions of events in 1990's past that now seem ridiculously wide of the mark. The writing is interesting, but not interesting enough to overcome this handicap.

%T Wolfwalker
%A Tara K. Harper
%I Del Rey/Ballantine
%D May 1990
%O paperback, US$3.95
%P 310
%G 0-345-36539-9

When I first saw the cover illo and read the back-cover blurb and Anne McCaffrey's plug for this book, I said to myself "Oh, Goddess -- not another formula menstrual-blood-and-guts fantasy!" But I'm happy to report that this one rises above type through the sheer crackling energy and electric zest of the writing. The world-building is better than average, too; but then, by the time you've read a third of this book you'll realize that the fantasy elements are actually pegged to an SF premise. Do yourself a favor -- ignore the misleading category box Del Rey dropped this one into, buy it, and enjoy.

%T Warrior's Woman
%A Johanna Lindsey
%I Avon
%D June 1990
%O paperback, US$5.95
%P 422
%G 0-380-75301-4

This book, by an acclaimed romance author, actually straddles two genres. Cover illustration and plot line -- assertive yet virginal female meets the ONE man who can best her AND meet her sexual needs -- reveal this to be the variety of romance novel often called a "bodice ripper." Yet the setting is strictly science fiction -- the woman is a first-class security officer from a spacefaring civilization and the "warrior" is a barbarian leader of the native race on a planet her people are investigating. The result? A pleasant, well-written, and psychologically senstive sex/romance fantasy, peopled with believable characters, and a story which, though formulaic, doesn't insult the intelligence. Ideal summer poolside reading for femfen who are into red-blooded romance. [Our thanks to guest reviewer Cathy Olanich, I wouldn't have touched this one with a ten-foot pole myself -- ESR]

Up to Eric's Home Page To Index Thu May 24 09:55:05 EDT 1990

Eric S. Raymond <esr@snark.thyrsus.com>