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Marseguro by Edward Willett

by Chadwick Ginther - Tuesday, Oct 14, 2008 at 4:13pm

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An asteroid dubbed the Fist of God has turned aside another, potentially planet killing asteroid, averting an Earth wide extinction event. But not before panicked souls take to the stars fleeing from both the asteroid, and the fundamentalist theology of the Body Purified.

The Body Purified rises from the ashes of the fall of Earth's governments to become the controlling theocracy of the planet. Their dogma teaching that genetic modification had angered God, and that man had no right trying to improve upon His creations. Geneticist Victor Hansen, the source of much of the Body's ire, was always a man of vision. When he knew he couldn't defeat the dogma of the Body Purified, he fled to the water planet he dubbed Marseguro, with his creations the Selkies, modified humans with the ability to breathe water and engineered to survive at great depths.

Regina Author, Edward Willett has filled his second novel with both memorable characters, great world-building and interesting science. The planet of Marseguro becomes a character itself under Willett's stewardship, and the Body Purified, a frightening yet believable antagonist. Each of Marseguro's point of view characters face hard choices when the Body Purified finds Hansen's hidden refuge, choices that serve to define both them, and the future of their worlds.

Willett has crafted a grand science fiction story that manages to pay tribute both to the galaxy spanning empires of Space Opera, and the examination of technologies just out of our current grasp. Dedicated SF fans will even spot some homages to one of science fiction's most venerable franchises, and to one of Canada's famous genre practitioners. Marseguro is well worth the read, and its sequel Terra Insegura, is due in May 2009. A release I am hotly anticipating.

Categories: Reviews, Staff Pick, SciFi & Fantasy, Saskatoon

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