One of Mick's best works, this is where his story-telling talent was shown to its best advantage! Basically an 'alien contact' sci-fi story, but set hundreds of years after the 1st contact, it portrays a conquered and dispirited humanity living out its uncertain days under the iron heel (claw?) of alien occupation. The sense of vast, epic scale is effectively hinted rather than expressed, which added vastly to the effectiveness of the tale! Mick has this thing about humanity being easily manipulable thru our petty superstitutions, religious hang-up's and mass mania, and this story is skilfully used by him to convey that cautionary tale. Never a boring moment, this 'aline contact' novel effectively conveys the sense of the unknown as well as the transformatory nature of alien contact.A rewarding and highly amusing read which is further developed in the brilliant sequel 'THEIR MASTER'S WAR', a must-BUY! The character of 'The Poet' - now tell me he is not a dead-ringer for Mick's persona as a rock star/balladeer/story-teller? Mick is like a brandname:- his books never disappoints! WE WANT MORE, MICK!
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