Thursday, 2 July 2015

The Gate

SM Stirling, Conquistador (New York, 2004).

A New Virginian smuggler sure screwed up by bringing a video disc of scenery on his side of the Gate to FirstSide. Moving pictures of an identifiable bay and hills with no familiar city but instead a herd of bison etc show Tom and Roy that they are dealing either with time travel or with an alternative timeline.

Surveillance technology and detective work establish that several hundred people spend very long periods of time inside a warehouse complex, i.e., that is where the Gate is located. Tom and Roy speak of "...the Gate..." on p. 197 but, on p. 222, Tom says "'...dimensional portal...'" and Adrienne replies that they usually call it the Gate - so maybe there is a bit of narrative discontinuity here?

Will Tom and Roy, captured by New Virginians, be taken through the Gate, never to return? Only further reading will tell. Tom liked Adrienne but is annoyed that she tricked him and he now sees her torturing a smuggler so will his feelings towards her survive these experiences? Only further reading will tell.

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