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The Maquisarde
Louise Marley
Ace Books, 386 pages

The Maquisarde
Louise Marley
Louise Marley has been a classical concert and opera singer for 15 years. She sings with the Seattle Symphony, has concertized in Russia and Italy, and is alto soloist at St. James Cathedral in Seattle. She holds a Master's Degree in Voice. Her novels include the trilogy The Singers of Nevya and most recently, The Terrorists of Irustan.

Louise Marley Website
ISFDB Bibliography
SF Site Review: The Maquisarde
SF Site Review: The Glass Harmonica
SF Site Review: The Glass Harmonica
SF Site Review: The Terrorists of Irustan
Glass Music

Past Feature Reviews
A review by Donna McMahon

Ebriel Serique has it all. A world-renowned flautist, she lives in an elegant Paris apartment with her physician husband and six-year-old daughter. In the late 21st century, the "InCo" corporate government runs Europe and North America, and has drawn a "Line" of embargo between the industrialized nations and the Third World, abandoning the majority of humanity to war, famine and disease.

Comfortably insulated from poverty and injustice, Ebriel has never questioned InCo's propaganda -- until her vacationing husband and daughter are killed by terrorists. InCo's General Glass claims their yacht had illegally crossed the Line to smuggle medical supplies, but Ebriel knows this is not true. There is a cover-up going on, and InCo treats her with utter callousness -- offering her no answers; only her family's ashes delivered in two gray metal containers marked "Human Remains."

From that moment on, Ebriel has one goal -- revenge. And when she is taken in by an underground organization called "The Chain," she finds what she needs -- combat training and weapons. Obsessed and half insane with grief, Ebriel will not hesitate to betray even her new allies, if it will give her a chance to kill General Glass.

Louise Marley is a terrific writer, and her latest novel is full of strengths. Her prose is polished, her future settings are vivid and credible, and her characters are always well drawn. In particular, she manages to catch the genteel Parisian flavour of her protagonist, even down to her educated, uncolloquial English. I also admired Marley's depiction of James Bull, an idealistic young man from a poverty-stricken background who sought honour and stability in a military career, but is becoming increasingly disillusioned.

In fact, the only significantly weak element of The Maquisarde is Marley's resistance movement -- a group which is supposed to be clever and tough enough to have evaded InCo's paranoid military for years. I found them naive, amateurish and considerably too nice to be credible. But what the heck. Marley's gripping story kept me glued to this book right to the end.

Copyright © 2003 Donna McMahon

Donna McMahon discovered science fiction in high school and fandom in 1977, and never recovered. Dance of Knives, her first novel, was published by Tor in May, 2001, and her book reviews won an Aurora Award the same month. She likes to review books first as a reader (Was this a Good Read? Did I get my money's worth?) and second as a writer (What makes this book succeed/fail as a genre novel?). You can visit her website at

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