Bright Messengers

Gentry Lee, Author
Gentry Lee, Author Spectra Books $21.95 (354p) ISBN 978-0-553-09006-2
Mass Market Paperbound - 447 pages - 978-0-553-57329-9
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Lee's first solo mission (his collaboration with Arthur C. Clarke yielded the three latest Rama novels: Rama II, The Garden of Rama and Rama Revealed) continues in the Rama universe, beginning on Earth in 2141 during a depression called the Great Chaos. Using visits by the bright messengers (who may be angels or aliens), Lee brings together the lives of agnostic engineer Johann Eberhardt and Sister Beatrice, a devout nun of the order of St. Michael of Siena. The ensuing venture to Mars, to the messengers' ship and to the beyond is classic SF--a tale that exhibits Lee's firm control of character and dialogue and, in the best tradition of the genre, one in which love and sex play major roles. Although the resolution of Sister Beatrice's struggle with chastity lacks any unique insight, she is otherwise a remarkable religious figure, both admirable and accessible. And in solidly fleshing out Johann's professional, filial and uxorial roles, Lee may well have created a new hero. (June)
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