Lyda Morehouse,
Apocalypse Array
(Roc, 2004)

Apocalypse Array is the fourth book in Lyda Morehouse's series about the end of the world (Archangel Protocol, Fallen Host and Messiah Node). I am pleased to say that I have come to enjoy books in a series. What better way is there to get to know the characters and the author as both evolve over several years?

Amariah and the small green dragon are my favorite characters in Array. One is a real person and the other is an enhanced computer. Both could use some lessons in confidence, especially the green one. Trust me. This is 2095, after all, and techies rule. Amariah, the gifted one, is a teenager, a possible messiah. Bright and sassy, as well as "connected" through her father, Michael Archangelo, she jumps at the chance to visit a counter-culture "rave" in the darker area of New York City's layered city. It was a good idea -- and it wasn't.

Meanwhile, the green dragon is incensed because her employer is selling software in the form of mind-altering games. She is no longer the larger-than-life green dragon from Node. She has been downsized and it is breaking her heart. She speaks wistfully of herself as "this one" because she thinks she cannot claim the first person singular "I." A bit of corporate news comes her way and she sees a way to even scores with her employer. Settling old scores is a priority in this heady mix of characters and plot maneuvers. This is all very satisfying from a reader's point of view.

Chalk up a large score for Morehouse's creativity. Her books reveal a new world. She looks at it with a balanced view of its absurdity and its truths.

I enjoyed the rollicking, generous dollops of humor in this novel and I was intrigued by the intelligence of Lyda Morehouse. The rotation of narrators is a welcome plot device. It was a way of looking into minds and motives, much like looking at a building from every angle, in every season and phase of the moon. Morehouse can join Rowling and Tolkien in quality fantasy writing any day.

- Rambles
written by Jean Marchand
published 11 September 2004

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