THE BOOK OF BEING by Ian Watson

THE BOOK OF BEING

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Wrapping up the comic trilogy of The Book of the River (1985) and The Book of the Stars (p. 513). Readers will recall that riverwoman Yaleen, home after her astro-travels and reborn in a child's body, now has an urgent mission: to recruit people for the Worm's store of kas (souls) against the threat of the Godmind, an ambitious computer-godling that very soon will destroy all humanity in its quest for ultimate power. Yaleen's ally the Worm, impatient with Yaleen's progress, arranges to have her killed so that her ka may return to the Worm's repository: the Worm plans to send her astro, travelling to contact other Worms on distant planets and alert them to the threat posed by the Godmind. All this, however, occurs while Yaleen is experimenting with a time-distorting drug. Then the Godmind makes its brain-burning power-play; Yaleen, caught amid a web of cosmic connections, seizes her chance to stop time and make some significant rearrangements in reality: she returns everything to the way it was before the Worm and the Godmind got too big for their boots. Fans of the trilogy should find this one a suitable and worthy conclusion, with solid-to-stolid storytelling and cosmic complications aplenty. Seasoned observers, however, will note once again Watson's curious inability to deal with the consequences of his own inventions.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1986
Publisher: Victor Gollancz--dist. by David & Charles