DIAMOND MASK by Julian May


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 Book two of May's Galactic Milieu trilogy (Jack the Bodiless, 1991) is a leisurely account of the events that led up to the Metapsychic Rebellion of 2083 and precipitated the action of May's previous tetralogy, the Saga of Pliocene Exile. In the main, this continues the account of the psychically gifted (``operant'') Remillard family and humanity's growing involvement with the psychic-powered association of alien races know as the Galactic Milieu. Fury, the malign entity generated by the death of the evil Vic, still lurks undiscovered inside someone's head; its human extension, the Hydra (composed of four Remillard scions) continues to work Fury's will, slaying its victims in an agonizing psychic vampirism. Leading the search for Fury is the Paramount operant, Jack; eventually joining Jack will be Dee, a Paramount who only reluctantly comes into her full powers and for most of the proceedings is hostile to Jack. Despite many hints, we never learn who Fury is, though two more of its Hydra heads are lopped off. Grandmaster Marc invents a powerful psychic amplifier and, dangerously, shows himself vulnerable to Fury. In the end, planet Caledonia is saved from a disastrous earthquake by a metaconcert of Jack, Dee, and Marc. Stay tuned for the Rebellion itself, which May promises for volume three. Again patchy and irritatingly inconclusive; but May handles both the psychic complications and the family interactions with pleasing skill, and the upshot is another probable crowd-pleaser- -though no place for newcomers to start.

Pub Date: March 28th, 1994
ISBN: 0-679-43310-4
Page count: 480pp
Publisher: Knopf
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 1994


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