"A great space opera"
The collapse of the octopus-like Zamos Corporation has left
several voids in the interstellar system as well as leaving
individuals in various state of isolation. The big bang
impact of the disintegration of Zamos, actually a crime
family, is quite shocking.
Pugilist Ned Gattes has no gambling halls to ply his trade
and no one needs an ex-boxer. Telepath Lorrice also finds
no one in need of her mental abilities. Alien legal
scholar Hasso only wants to ply his profession, but every
Tom, Dick and Khagodian wants to fill the Zamos emptiness.
Then there are the Lyhhrt, splintered by Zamos from the
oneness of their race, losing their touch with reality.
When they complete their downward spiral into insanity,
these renegades will cause havoc as never seen before
because with a thought they can stop a heart or eradicate a
thought. The players line up for a confrontation on
Khagodis where events are already spinning towards a bloody
clash of several alien life forms.
MINDWORLDS completes Phyllis Gotlieb's strong multi-alien
science fiction trilogy. The story line is loaded with
plenty of action on several fronts that converge on
Khagodis, but never fully consolidate into the prime plot.
Still the tale is fast-paced and very imaginative, as each
alien species seems real as if Ms. Gotlieb had a drink at
the Star Wars cantina. As the book asks, "How can you stop
a conspiracy of telepaths?" Easy read the novel and its
delightful predecessors because science fiction fans will
fully enjoy this book that ties up loose ends from FLESH
AND GOLD and VIOLENT STARS yet can stand alone.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted May 11, 2002
How can you stop a conspiracy of telepaths? The alien
Lyhhrt are powerful enough to read the human mind; if they
find you know too much, they can erase your memory, or
simply stop your heart. The normally peaceful Lyhhrt
society has been splintered by technological change, the
bitter legacy of their exploitation by the Zamos crime
family. Now a few renegade Lyhhrt, driven mad by isolation
from their group mind, seem to be planning terrible crimes--
or are they again being used as deadly tools in someone
When the illicit corporation created by Zamos collapsed, it
disrupted the lives of heroes as well as villains. With
gambling dens shut down, gladiator Ned Gaddes has nowhere
to fight. Beautiful Lorrice had hoped to sell her ESP
talents to Zamos, but was forced to sell her body instead.
And on the planet Khagodis, scholarly Hasso will be forced
to leave his archives and unravel the shadowy web that has
entangled their fate with the Lyhhrt's.
The struggle that ensues provides the ultimate test of
their resources - Ned's savvy toughness, Lorrice's psychic
insight, and the fact that even a gentle Khagodi like Hasso
could go head-to-head with a dinosaur. Like the best
science fiction, Mindworlds is simultaneously exciting and
thought provoking. Gotlieb offers a satisfyingly complex
look at the ambiguous consequences of toppling even the
most evil of empires, and the sacrifices that ordinary
people must make to prevent the vacuum of power from being
filled by equally corrupt forces.
Ursula K. Le Guin found Gotlieb's earlier novel Flesh and
Gold "dazzling," lit up by "sex, violence, intricate
plotting, light-speed pacing, an amazing variety of aliens,
touches of Philip K. Dick's sardonic humor and Cordwainer
Smith's obstinate idealism." Its sequel, Violent Stars, was
described in Maclean's as "above all a poet's novel....
Gotlieb's language lifts her book from exotic thriller to
literary achievement." Mindworlds offers a resounding
climax to the story that began in these celebrated novels.