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The Best of All Possible Worldsby Karen Lord
Synopses & Reviews
Karen Lord’s debut novel, the multiple-award-winning Redemption in Indigo, announced the appearance of a major new talent—a strong, brilliantly innovative voice fusing Caribbean storytelling traditions and speculative fiction with subversive wit and incisive intellect. Compared by critics to such heavyweights as Nalo Hopkinson, China Miéville, and Ursula K. Le Guin, Lord does indeed belong in such select company &mdash ;yet, like them, she boldly blazes her own trail.
Now Lord returns with a second novel that exceeds the promise of her first. The Best of All Possible Worlds is a stunning science fiction epic that is also a beautifully wrought, deeply moving love story.
A proud and reserved alien society finds its homeland destroyed in an unprovoked act of aggression, and the survivors have no choice but to reach out to the indigenous humanoids of their adopted world, to whom they are distantly related. They wish to preserve their cherished way of life but come to discover that in order to preserve their culture, they may have to change it forever.
Now a man and a woman from these two clashing societies must work together to save this vanishing race — and end up uncovering ancient mysteries with far-reaching ramifications. As their mission hangs in the balance, this unlikely team — one cool and cerebral, the other fiery and impulsive — just may find in each other their own destinies... and a force that transcends all.
"Mythopoeic Award winner Lord (Redemption in Indigo) dives into SF romance and produces an entertaining, optimistic novel. Only a few of the aloof but psychically gifted Sadiri survive the destruction of their homeworld. A number of their men arrive on the melting pot planet Cygnus Beta, hoping to find homes and wives and start rebuilding their population. When Grace Delarua is assigned to help Sadiri Councillor Dllenahkh survey local populations with relic Sadiri DNA for possible matchmaking, romance develops between the two despite many obstacles thrown their way. The book consciously references Bradbury's Martian Chronicles but feels closer to Star Trek in spirit, with a cheerful polyglot culture welcoming a race of emotionally reserved intellectuals. Delarua is a pleasant narrator, irrepressible in the face of what seems like impossible personal and professional challenges. (Feb.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"This fascinating and thoughtful science fiction novel breaks out of the typical conflict-centered narrative paradigm to examine adaptation, social change, and human relationships. I’ve not read anything quite like it, which it makes that rare beast: a true original." Kate Elliot, author of the Crown of Stars series and the Spiritwalker Trilogy
"Filled with witty asides, trickster spiders, poets and one very wise woman, Redemption in Indigo is a rare find that you could hand to your child, your mother or your best friend." The Washington Post
"A clever, exuberant mix of Caribbean and Senegalese influences that balances riotously funny set pieces (many involving talking insects) with serious drama initiated by meddlesome supernatural beings." The New York Times
"One of those literary works of which it can be said that not a word should be changed." Booklist (Starred Review)
About the Author
Karen Lord has been a physics teacher, a diplomat, a part-time soldier, and an academic at various times and in various countries. She is now a writer and research consultant in Barbados. Her debut novel, Redemption in Indigo, won the Frank Collymore Literary Award, the William L. Crawford Award, and the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Adult Literature, and was nominated for the 2011 World Fantasy Award for Best Novel.
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