cover image Phaze Doubt

Phaze Doubt

Piers Anthony. Putnam Publishing Group, $18.95 (303pp) ISBN 978-0-399-13529-3

In the first trilogy of Antony's Apprentice Adept series, the heroes Stile and the Blue Adept separate the overlapping worlds of Phaze and Proton to prevent them from destroying each other. In the second trilogy their sons recombine the worlds to save them from the evil Adepts. Now, in the concluding volume of that series, the spacefaring Hectare have conquered the planet and captured its leading citizens. The only Adept left is Nepe/Flach, the grandchild of Stile and Blue. Following obscure clues from the Oracle, Nepe/Flach must logically entice a Hectarian spy into switching sides and helping the loyal underground. This narrative suffers in comparison to the previous books (which readers would do well to read first), since here Anthony has neglected to provde a collective subplot detailing the heroes' attempts to extend legal equality to non-humans. Otherwise, the writing, action and plotting are quite satisfactory. (June)