In City Without End Kay Kenyon continues her epic science fiction series, The Entire and the Rose about a parallel world discovered and explored by Titus Quinn in both Bright of the Sky and A World Too Near. Quinn has a tenuous alliance with the Tarig Lords, mostly owing to the nanotech weapon they believe he carries. For now, the threat of destroying the Entire is enough to halt their destruction of the Rose (better known to us as Earth). The only problem is, Quinn threw the nan into the time and space bending waters of the Nigh, unable to let himself destroy a world full of innocent people-- many of whom he cares deeply for.
Helice Maki, Quinn's unwanted Minerva escort to the Entire, has none of Quinn's sense of right and wrong, but she approves of his disposal nonetheless. She has plans of her own for the Entire. Her cohorts on Earth are gathering a group of "savvies"-- the brightest minds available-- to cross over into the Entire and begin the human race anew. This time without any "middies" tainting the gene pool. Quinn tracks Helice to Rim City, a colorful city encircling the the heart of the Entire, the Ascendancy.
Quinn's daughter Syndey, now a woman calling herself Sen Ni, rules Rim City under the grace of the Tarig. Quinn desperately needs her help, but Sen Ni has her own ambitions and is reluctant to trust the father who abandoned her. With the help of her Inyx mount and his herd, Sen Ni is conducting a dream assault on the Tarig, causing everyone to question the power of the Tarig, hoping to clear the way for her to seize control of the Entire. Her new advisor, an odd navitar more than willing to weave together strands of future time to suit his own purposes, has no use for Quinn and muddles Sen Ni's thinking.
I've always thought the amount of time it take me to finish a novel reflects how well written it is. City Without End was one that I couldn't put down. Much of the tension built in Bright of the Sky and A World Too Near comes together in this book, giving it an urgency that was missing in A World Too Near. Rim City is an amazingly rich setting. I especially like the denizens of The Underground, which include The Society of the Red Throne (those who worship navitars) and morts (those who idealize the Rose and it's short lifespans). There are so many layers to the world of The Entire and the Rose that I can't describe them all in one review. Same goes for the array of characters.
In City Without End, Kenyon weaves together an amazingly full society with a compelling story, one that is eagerly followed. I can not recommend The Entire and the Rose series enough. This is a wonderfully crafted science fiction world and City Without End is the best chapter yet.
City Without End by Kay Kenyon
Printed by Pyr
City Without End by Kay Kenyon is available at Amazon.com
Pyr Publishing provided me with a free review copy of City Without End