"The Many-Coloured Land"

"The Golden Torc"

"The Nonborn King"

The Adversary"


Most books I read have been advised by friends. So, too, with this series. And I was hooked at first sight.

Somewhere in the future, mankind has discovered a way to travel through time - a common enough denominator in science fiction. In May's books, however, there are a few different angles: You can only travel back in time to the same location as where you are, you can only go back a specific time (6 million years in this case), and you can only go. There is no way back.

Intellectuals, adventurers and people disenchanted with life as they know it use the time portal as a means to enter voluntary exile - exile back into a geological era of time known as the Pleistocene. Little do they suspect that Pliocene earth is actually ruled by an alien race, the Tanu, who in effect use humans popping out of their side of the time portal either as slaves or as breeding machines due to their themselves being genetically flawed.

The members of "group green", a batch of people who departed for Pliocene Exile together, are the main protagonists of the four books. Human slavery is not something they take to kindly, so the Tanu balance of power quickly gets tilted.

Julian May captures the imagination with a realistic world that requires little suspension of disbelief (rather like Anne McCaffrey's "Dragonriders" series). The characters are interesting and, importantly, it's a fascinating and exciting story she relays, a story of psychoactivity, immense power, discovery, loathing and a quest for survival. Be that as it may, there are a flaw or two in the series; "green group", for example, contains almost all important protagonists, which is quite a bit of a coincidence. Nonetheless, Excellent Stuff.

Released 1981 to 1984, ISBN 0-330-26656-X, 0-330-26719-1, 0-330-26902-X and 0-330-28031-7



Written September 1998


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