Review: Nova by Samuel Delany

Nova is a gem of a novel. If you can get past one huge faux pas, any sf buff with half a brain should find something to enjoy in this book.

Nova is primarily a space opera. If you don’t like space opera, don’t worry, the book is more than just space opera. It is a thoughtful extrapolation of the future (well, except for the faux pas), as well as a philosophical mind- twister. But it is primarily a space opera.

Lorq Von Ray assembles a rag-tag crew to hunt the hitherto scarce source of power in a nova, all the while trying to beat his childhood enemies at the same game. Shakespearean intrigue of mythical proportions plows straight into a well-conceived action-adventure. With gorgeous prose. What’s not to like?

If you are one of those people who thoroughly dislikes new age quackery, such as the tarot, it will take a large suspension of disbelief to overcome the faux pas of making the tarot a scientific method of guiding the characters’ lives (as if!). But if that hurdle can be got over, Nova is well worth it.

P.F. Hawkins


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