Seven Beyondby Stella Atrium
the mysterious—and possibly alien—Linda Deemer. Dr. Meenins is haunted by memories of alien places and of a race called the Longists, who inhabit
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Dr. David Christopher Meenins is a man in search of his past. Accompanying him on his journey of discovery are the powerful Lady Drasher Elizabeth Tasgneganz, the pedantic Dr. Virgil Augustus Grammario,
the mysterious—and possibly alien—Linda Deemer. Dr. Meenins is haunted by memories of alien places and of a race called the Longists, who inhabit faraway planets. Together, the group travels to the one place in the world the Longists might reappear: a remote abbey inhabited by an order of nuns known for their wisdom, mystical insight and quality brandy.
Throughout the journey, the specter of David Shanklen—once Meenins’ patient and perhaps also his mentor—looms. Shanklen claimed that he was kept prisoner in an alien zoo on the distant planet maintained by the Longists. Through Shanklen, Dr. Meenins must confront the secrets of his past to find the New Restingplace of the Dead. Meenins’ journey is more like a pilgrimage than a quest. The travelers exchange stories along the way à la The Canterbury Tales, and the discovery of the restingplace grows out of their long friendships.
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As soon as you begin reading this novel you note how the author has given much attention to detail, and how she has maximised her ability to use descriptive prose in an effective way, to bring the scene alive in the reader’s mind. The writing is really good, and the styling of the story is quite different from the standard way a sci-fi/fantasy novel is usually written. It was refreshing to read a book which had good editing also. I personally found the first half of the novel to be mysterious and intriguing, but somewhat confusing at the same time. However, I can appreciate how this also compelled me to read on, so I could figure out all the nuances of the plot, and to see how the story played out. Overall, I quite liked this book, and I enjoyed how it was surprising in its styling, and designed to be read by the more ‘intellectual’ reader.
Although the hero is Dr. Meenins, this book has two women characters as his traveling companions. They are not concubines or ministers, but rather people with their own lives who commit to the journey. Lady Drasher is a wealthy Russian lady with a sharp wit, and Linda Deemer (I won't give her secret away) is seven months pregnant! Great to see multi-dimensional women who are more than victims.
I liked this story a lot, especially the stuff about Clem and his offworld adventures. The characters' names tripped me up at first, but I soon sorted them out. And the vocabulary is unusual, many terms specific to story concepts. The adventure story is tied so well to the friends' journey, I was never lost or bored. A great ending, lots of humor.
In this book, Dr. David Meenins is 800 years old and a channeled Longsit named Clem. His homeworld was destroyed and other Longists expect Clem to lead them to the new restingplace in the blue Mountains of Flint. Except Dr. Meenins has forgotten past events and now lives as a Temporal, expecting to age and die. A traveling companion is sent to stir his memory. While searching Earth for answers to his past, Dr. Meenins engages in Tsing Tse a version of the Glass Bead Game first introduced to the world in Hermann Hesse's novel Magister Ludi. Hermann Hesse won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946 for Magister Ludi. The Glass Bead Game began for Hesse with music and mathematics. On the World Wide Web, which exists only because of mathematics, we more emphasize connectedness and liberated curiosity. I enjoyed this book so much, I developed at Cecil Guy Productions a Tsing Tse based on the characters of Seven Beyond, developed for playing and for joining.