|Submitted by Greg Simpson |
(Jun 18, 2007)
This book presents an "alternate reality" in which evil people exist who have the ability to take over your mind and make you do whatever they want you to do. The book's main character is Saul Laski, whom we meet in Chelmno during the Holocaust, but the book's point of view changes fluidly from character to character, sometimes following the "good guys," sometimes the bad ones. The "McGuffin" the book chases is the need to bring these "mind vampires" to some kind of justice, for the murders and other crimes they have committed.
There aren't many books I read over and over, but this is one of them. There's so much there - the characters are well fleshed out, the alternate reality is believable, the operation of the mental vampirism itself is carefully described, the scenery in all the various locations is realistically conveyed. As an epic saga it compares well to Tolkien's trilogy in length, depth, and fluidity. It's not a Great Work of Art - but there are few Great Works of Art that I can stand to read a second time; they seem to destroy something in me when they first pass through, and that's not an experience I like to repeat. This book is an enjoyable few days' reading, whenever I don't have much else to do, and I call that a great work of art (lower case). Dan, if you happen to read this - good job, and thanks.