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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews

       
Whipping Star

Copyright 1969 by Frank Herbert

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SOJALS rating:     
one SOJALS point one SOJALS point one SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Very good (3/5)

I first read this in 1973 and most recently on the 15th May 2010

Little is understood about the exotic aliens called Calibans. One thing is known however: they are ethically incapable of breaking a contract. This has achieved a particular poignancy now that the last remaining Caliban know as Fannie May has been trapped into a contract in which it is being slowly tortured to death. It achieves an existential importance when it is revealed that the death of this last Caliban may result in the death of most of the human and aliens in the ConSentiency universe.

This is a case for Jorj X. McKie of the Bureau of Sabotage and very little time remains for him to find and stop this atrocity.

I read the book maybe four times in the past many years and I've thoroughly enjoyed it every time. This time however I belatedly noticed the excellent humour tucked away in the novel. it really becomes quite enjoyable reading the annoyed banter between our characters (who are taking a protective drug with an unfortunate side-effect of making one angry). I chuckled at the Caliban's bewildering attempts to communicate.

All in all it's a lovely story, a brilliant but underrated book.

Loaded on the 22nd December 2020.
    
Cover of Whipping Star

Reviews of other works by Frank Herbert:
The Heaven Makers
The God Makers
Direct Descent

Reviews of other works by Frank Herbert and Bill Ransom:
The Jesus Incident
The Lazarus Effect
The Ascension Factor