I finished two reads yesterday. One was the IRS Instruction Manual for Personal Income Tax Form 1040. The other was the Pearseus trilogy by Nicholas Rossis.
The tome was dull, convoluted, and hard to understand. I found it extremely difficult to follow as if the author actually intended it to be confusing. There were whole sections that I merely skimmed. The IRS clearly needs beta readers and a paid editor!
(Sorry, Nicholas, if my intro gave you a coronary).
The Pearseus trilogy is an epic adventure that chronicles the feats of four protagonists that become embroiled in the complex political and philosophical factions of a multi-dimensional world. Ultimately, they play key roles in saving the planet’s inhabitants from annihilation.
This is one of those tales that balances nicely between science fiction and fantasy. Though many of the beings and events have a fantastical feel to them, they have alien versus magical origins. Earth technology still exists, but is limited and barely understood. I enjoyed the occasional resurfacing of Earth artifacts, wisdom, and colloquialisms.
The overall feel of the trilogy reminded me of Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time series. The sweep of the story is epic in nature and new people, beings, information, technology, and weapons routinely come into play, modifying the scope of the protagonists’ goals and challenges, and upping both the dangers and the means to overcome them.
One of Rossis’s strengths is his meticulous world-building. Pearseus is a planet claimed by three different sets of inhabitants. Refugees from the Earth spaceship, Pearseus, seized the world from the First, who previously usurped it from the native creatures and terraformed it to their liking. This layered history of conquest serves as a major source of contention in the plot. At the same time, Rossis gives the globe’s current nations distinct political and cultural identities with a realistic smattering of political maneuverings, back-door alliances, and betrayals.
The trilogy has quite a bit of philosophical discussion as the varied cultures play against each other. These unhurried moments are interspersed between great action scenes, and they lessen as the plot picks up speed and zooms toward its conclusion. Action descriptions are skillfully done, effortless to follow, and frequently bloody. The main characters and supporting cast are well-rounded, believable, and easy for the reader to identify with. Teo, a despicable power-monger, is particularly engaging and I looked forward to his scenes.
All in all, a great choice for epic fantasy and science fiction readers.