Not All About EVE
Release Date: 21 May
416 pages | Paperback/ ebook Author: Tony Gonzales Publisher: Gollancz
Clearly the first
volume of a series, Tabit Genesis belongs to the genus Space Opera Biggus Hairius, and is acceptably big and hairy, though it’s also rather diffuse and lightweight.
In the far future, Earth has been lost to aliens, and surviving humans have set up a fractious mini- society in a distant galaxy – actually, several societies, with bloody beefs between them. One of the main rows is over a new class division between naturally born humans and those grown in machines.
The book splashes around pleasurably with familiar ideas, rather than finding a really grabby hook of its own. The chapters skip between loads of different plotlines and characters: a boy making a wondrous contact with aliens above a gaseous planet; two scary warrior siblings being bred for greatness by their kingly father; and ( the best strand) a deep cover, drug- addled agent who keeps hallucinating a taunting Minotaur. The relationship between this unstable pair is like that between Michael Keaton and his feathered tormentor in Birdman.
These stories naturally converge, but their scope and variety comes at the expense of depth or believability. There’s lots of pulp melodrama, and great dumpy wodges of expositionary prose in the early pages. It’s still enjoyable, and it’ll be interesting to see where the series goes in future books, but for now it feels stuck between novelistic SF and a lower- grade movie tie- in. Andrew Osmond Author Tony Gonzales was one of the folk behind space opera MMORPG EVE Online; his previous books were set in its universe.