Copyright 2000 by
I read this in March 2001.
An uneasy truce keeps humanity from war with the super-fast alien
Speedies. The planet Veil is subject to devastating attacks from a
lost Speedy space fleet. Time is playing tricks on people, reality
changing almost invisibly around them. Meanwhile at the Institute
for the Criminally Insane, Siggy slaves in hell for the Director.
Born on Veil, all Siggy ever wanted was to marry her childhood sweetheart,
have children and dance. But there's no hope of that any longer. She
somehow has to survive her horrifying job at the Institute, survive
her encounters with the aliens, travel much of known space and still
find time to sort out a few problems from her childhood. Siggy, of
course, handles this with poise and an inner toughness that certainly
had me on her side from half way down page one.
Wow. I'll be reading Maggy Thomas in future. I was unenthusiastic at
the beginning because one cannot read the first few pages of this book
without thinking of "Silence of the Lambs" with Siggy playing a
disadvantaged Clarice. Any such relationship with imprisoned, crazed
psychopaths is coloured by "Silence". Yet this novel is of course very
different. Maggy Thomas has built a whole, largely unpleasant universe
for our Siggy and her problems. There's faster than light travel, aliens,
time-slips, strange and evil monsters both human and alien, and of
course, the tango.
Loaded on the 29th March 2001.