Review – The Recollection – Future SF

November 10, 2011 - 12:17 am No Comments

The Recollection
Author: Gareth L Powell
Publisher: Solaris Books
Page count: 307pp
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

Ed Rico lives his life running from “just one disaster to another”, so when artist Ed’s brother Verne Rico disappears into a bizarre gateway known as the ‘Arch’ on a London escalator, Ed and Verne’s wife Alice go through the next available Arch on a quest through planets and time frames to find Verne.

On another planet in another time, Katherine Abdulov is Captain of the small ship Ameline. Estranged from her wealthy parents and her ex Victor Luciano, Abdulov is at the end of her tether and broke, so accepts a commission to ferry an Acolyte and a scientist to her home planet Strauli then on to the mysterious ‘Ark’ on the planet Doh.
These lives will soon become intertwined as they progress on their personal journeys as the arches randomly appear throughout the universe.

Whilst time travel and alternate worlds are familiar SF tropes, Powell creates something new and exciting through the use of the arches which span time and planets. His writing is enjoyable and exciting, which adds a modern edge to these tropes, as does the use of news bursts inserted between sections summarising events across each world to avoid info dumping. As Kat Abdulov plays tourist guide to passenger Drake, we also have another clever technique for world exposition that further and deftly avoids the Dan Brown school of scene setting!

The scale and shape of Powell’s universe is astounding, the story is an enjoyable romp and the characters are lively and fully fledged believable people. Gareth L Powell is a name to watch in the future of SF.

If you like the look of this check it out at The Recollection.

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