Image of The One-Eyed Man: A Fugue, With Winds and Accompaniment


Image of The One-Eyed Man: A Fugue, With Winds and Accompaniment

The One-Eyed Man begins very roughly, with a lack of the clear voice and well-rendered characterizations readers have come to expect from Modesitt. In a great departure from Modesitt’s standard depiction of protagonists, the female characters are flatly two-dimensional and the male characters engage a bit too much in the male gaze. Yet, the concept is interesting, the world is well-developed and the novel improves in the middle, with pacing and characterizations picking up. But the whole of it is so greatly different from Modesitt’s recent works, particularly the Imager Portfolio, readers may find themselves wondering if they were written by the same author.

Dr. Paulo Verano’s wife has left him, taken their wealth and alienated the affections of his only child. In light of that, taking an assignment outworld to Stittara, a trip that will bring him back home nearly 200 years after he departs, seems like a perfect plan to heal and move on. The colony of Stittara’s primary task of producing anagathics, the drugs responsible for greatly extending human lifespans, is essential to many multi-corporations. The politics, intrigue and secrets Dr. Verano find on Stittara, however, are more dangerous than he expected. (TOR, Sep., 368 pp., $25.99)
Reviewed by: 
Victoria Frerichs