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Archangel Protocol
Lyda Morehouse
Roc Books, 352 pages

Archangel Protocol
Lyda Morehouse
Lyda Morehouse was born in 1967 in Sacramento, California. Her family moved shortly after to LaCrosse, Wisconsin. In 1985, she attended Augsburg College in the Twin Cities and she settled permanently there. At college, she received BAs in English and History. She teaches cartooning on a semi-regular basis through Eden Prairie Community Education and is employed at the Minnesota Historical Society.

Lyda Morehouse Website
ISFDB Bibliography

Past Feature Reviews
A review by Lisa DuMond

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When was the last time you looked up from reading a book and realised hours had passed? Or finished a book and just said "Wow!"? That's when a novel has a hold on you. You know you've found the good stuff. It's a hit-or-miss kind of thing, right? Uh uh. Let me get rid of the guesswork for you -- Archangel Protocol is a definite Wow!

Get ready to experience life in the last quarter of the 21st century. Brace yourself; it's not a pretty sight. New York is hardly paradise now -- give it a few score years and it would have Giuliani for brunch. And what "they" did to Yankee Stadium... I shudder to think.

On the other hand, if your fondest wish is to get on the web and never have to sign off, this world of the future may be your idea of heaven. Thanks to the LINK, everyone who follows the rules can be wet-wired into a universal net and stayed plugged in forever. Sure, it's an addiction, but isn't it efficient? And, yes, people can eavesdrop on you and learn the most intimate details of your life, but the law must be maintained.

Things on the LINK are not perfect at the moment. It's bad enough that the theocratic governments can have a person's access cut off forever. A new element has entered the stream that has gotten the population more confused than ever -- LINK angels are showing up in the oddest places, and everyone has their own idea of what the appearances mean.

Someone is going to have to straighten things out. How link-forbidden ex-cop Deidre McMannus gets forced into that role is at the heart of this strangle-hold plot. Morehouse keeps the pace moving right around breakneck to three-gees. The farther you plow into Archangel Protocol, the faster it pulls you along... and there are no brakes. The last one hundred pages go by in a breathless blur.

What Morehouse has created for us is an instant classic of SF. McMannus is one of the strongest, most complex investigators in a long, long time. The rest of the characters are vividly drawn, fascinating beings. The technology seems so tantalisingly close -- frightening possible. The image of a future society and government is chilling. The combination is miraculous; one of the best novels in memory.

It's hard science fiction; the LINK and the weaponry alone place it squarely in that category. The way Morehouse examines the everyday injustice of the social hierarchy, touches on gender issues, and scrutinises the positive and negative aspects of religious beliefs -- all this is solid social science fiction. Depending on how you look at the bewitching LINK-angels, Archangel Protocol may have a foot in the fantasy genre.

You know what? Forget about classifications and just read it. Give yourself the rare experience of pure amazement. The chance doesn't come around that often.

Copyright © 2001 Lisa DuMond

In between reviews and interviews, Lisa DuMond writes science fiction and humour. DARKERS, her latest novel, will be published in early 2000 by Hard Shell Word Factory. She has also written for BOOKPAGE and PUBLISHERS WEEKLY. Her articles and short stories are all over the map. You can check out Lisa and her work at her website hikeeba!.


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