Thursday, October 8, 2009

Review: The Margarets by Sheri S Tepper

Hey there guys and girls, I’m back with yet another great review for you. ;-)

This last few weeks I had my nose firmly planted between the pages of Sheri’s book, and what a read this was.

When I first saw it as being a mix of fantasy and sci-fi I was a bit sceptical but I was soon proven wrong.

What if you lived 7 lives at the same time, on seven different planets? A Queen, a Warrior, Healer, Shaman, Grandmother, Slave and Spy. All different people but also the same woman. The earth and all human life has reached its limit and surpassed it. Destruction or salvation rests in the hands of one woman who walks seven paths. There are those who seek her to fulfil a prophecy centuries in waiting, and there are those who would stop at nothing to ensure she fails :-o .

Well that’s basically what I can tell you, the story line is far too complex and intricate to summarize.

I have to say. “I love this book” :-)

This was really a great read and I could not put the book down at all. The plot, storyline, characters, and effort placed into this book is truly amazing, but we will get to each aspect in time. :-)

The book basically revolves around Margaret and follows here throughout her life at various ages points. These mainly focus on the points were she splits into her other selves.

Splits into her other selves? :-o

Well yes, without know it she gets duplicated several times at key decision points, such as staying with her lover or leaving him, getting aboard an alien space ship or not. Each of these splits takes the new Margaret into a different life with different adventures.

The plot and storyline is very well developed around this.

The reason for all the happenings are not apparent through the book but if you pay attention to the small stories and legends you start to get a feel for what’s going on. The final plot is not fully revealed till the end of the book which is good, especially when you get that feeling of “yes, I was on the right track” :-) .

One of the things I loved about the story was the attention to detail when it came to planning amongst the characters. Sheri created an amazing plan for the resurrection of the earth from the dilapidated state that it is in, one that obviously took a great deal of thought. Way to go Sheri! ;-)

The flow of the story is also very comfortable, a bit disorienting when you jump to the next time frame in the lives of the Margaret’s, and could have been supported by a better indication that you are now dealing with a new phase. But over all the flow of the story is very comfortable, neither to fast nor to slow, allowing the plans of the various groups to unfold and ripen at a steady pace and not rushing into things.

At the end of the book when all the Margaret’s meet up once more, the storylines also knit together rather easily, no complicated tactics or overdone stories had to be written to accommodate it. This helped to ease the story into its final phase and bring everything to a close. :-)

As for the characters, well there is a large assortment of them and you can get a bit lost among the variety but you quickly pick up on who is who and where you are.

Still they are all loveable and contribute to the story as a whole very effectively, each playing their role in helping whichever Margaret they are with.

The biggest problem for me came with the Margaret’s themselves; yes their names change a bit and each chapter starts with the name and planet of the one you deal with, bit it’s still confusing at the start of each chapter, especial since its written in the first person. Luckily the accompanying surrounding and characters helps you to quickly orient yourself as to where you are.

All in all Sheri created a great story that I would love to read again :-) . The characters are wonderful with a captivating plot and a storyline that makes you think, are we on a similar road and would our earth end up such a waist dump as this one in a hundred years? Would we have to resort to selling our people as slaves to alien civilizations in return for clean drinking water? :-o

In this book Sheri has given us a superb melding of Fantasy and Science-Fiction :-)

The elements of both melding together perfectly.

I know I definitely want to take a look at some of her other book as well now.

For this one I have to say 8/10 (great characters, unique idea and good planning went into this book though it did get a bit confusing at times).

To order your copies, click here for US, here for UK, and for those in SA, please use the link at the top of the blog.

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