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Raymond's Reviews #177

%T The Great SF Stories: #22 (1964)
%E Isaac Asimov
%E Martin H. Greenberg
%D January 1992
%O paperback, US$5.50
%P 348
%G ISBN 0-88677-495-0

Another retrospective year's best, well chosen and tastefully framed. Highlights of this anthology include Cordwainer Smith's classic The Ballad Of Lost C'Mell and T. L. Thomas's underappreciated The Weatherman. Recommended.

%T Avatar
%A Louise Cooper
%I Tor
%D January 1992
%O paperback, 309 pp, US$4.99
%G 0-812-50802-5

Like the previous five books of the "Indigo" series, "Avatar" powerfully depicts its protagonist's psychological struggles with her own conflicting desires and doubts. This time, however, Cooper is less clear about translating Indigo's struggle into a plausible continuation of the story on the fantasy level. At the end of "Avatar," it is clear that Indigo has vanquished another of her own personal demons -- but has she removed another demon from the world? Either way, the novel is well worth reading. [CCO]

%T Bardic Voices
%S The Lark and the Wren
%V Book 1
%A Mercedes Lackey
%I Baen
%D January 1992
%O paperback, US$4.99
%P 488
%G ISBN 0-671-72099-6

This novel is business as usual for Mercedes Lackey --- medievaloid fantasy, female protagonist, poor-kid-makes-good plot, wish fulfillment, romance, independence. This is a better example of the breed than most, though; the protagonist is an unusually tough-minded and realistic sort who survives on hard work and intelligence, and her problems aren't blown up into vast cosmological drama. Ms. Lackey seems to be bidding for the territory now held by Marion Zimmer Bradley and Anne McCaffrey; it's not a place I particularly like to hang out, myself, but I think the change might be an improvement.

Up to Eric's Home Page To Index Mon Feb 10 16:34:48 EST 1992

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