Helm

Helm

by Steven Gould

Hardcover(REV)

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Overview

After global devastation, the last remnants of Earth sent a handful of colonists to a distant terraformed world to give humanity one last, desperate chance. Unable to provide the technology required for an advanced civilization, the founders instilled in the colonists a strict code of conduct and gave them a few precious imprinting devices: glass helmets that contain all of Earth's scientific knowldege.

Once in a generation, the heir to the province of Laal begins the arduous training required to survive the imprinting of the Glass Helm and acquire the knowledge of lost Earth. But Leland de Laal, the youngest son of one of Agatsu's greatest leaders, has climbed the forbidden rock spire where the Helm is kept and donned it, unaware that its knowledge has a terrible price. To an unprepared mind it brings madness, agony, and even death.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780312864606
Publisher: Doherty, Tom Associates, LLC
Publication date: 03/28/1998
Edition description: REV
Pages: 382
Product dimensions: 5.81(w) x 8.55(h) x 1.26(d)

About the Author

Steven Gold is the highly acclaimed author of Blue Waves, Jumper, Wildside and Helm. He lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with his wife, writer Laura Mixon.

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Helm 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
...where's the sequel???? The premise is intriguing, the bioscience adequate for the tale, and the sociology as broad as it needs to be, but what really stands out in this story is the martial arts focus and the characterization. The hero. Leland de Laal, lives on an Earth-like planet settled by refugees from Earth, who have been battling their way out of a technological dark ages for several generations. That's not a new plot in SF, but the concise summary of the requirements for civilization--literacy, hygiene, etc--spelled out in the beginning show that Gould has thought his world out more carefully than many authors working in a pseudo-feudal world. De Laal defies his father and dons the Helm, which force-feeds another person's mind into his. He finds himself suddenly acquiring new expertise in martial arts, new insights into military strategy. All this would make him just another dull Superman-wannabe, except that Gould keeps him as warm and witty a teenager as anyone could wish. De Laal still suffers from shyness, insecurity, all the fears one expects in a teenager. If sometimes the integration between his amazingly mature intelligence and his emotional immaturity is not perfect, well, we can forgive this in the context of well executed aikido moves, a piquant romance, and some delightful surprises as de Laal faces off with a barbarian tribal leader. Well done. I want more! I hope Gould writes a sequel to this; I wanna know if de Laal winds up as doshu or not!
Guest More than 1 year ago
From the age of ten starting my reading life with the Narnia Chronicles, the Hobbit, Lord of the Rings and many many more, I've judged each new novel or series based on what I've read in the past. As long as a novel was unique, rarely was it dumped in the fire bin. The 'Helm' based on cover and the publisher's speel had enough appeal for me to add it to my trove of books. At least to get it from store to home. It took no more than the opening chapter to place this author on my (to always buy list). To this point, I have only ready two of this authors novels. I own four! I'm holding on to two, like fine wine, hoping they taste that much better if I wait. If you're afraid to cough up the coin for this novel, email me ten of your favorite novels and I'll guarantee for you, if you will like this novel or any others I'd suggest.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
woodge on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Sometimes trashy sci-fi can be the best kind of fun. Helm is a fun, cool, fast-paced adventure story. Here's the book's description (snagged from the back cover): "After global devastation, the last remnants of Earth sent a handful of colonists of a distant terraformed world to give humanity one last, desperate chance. Unable to provide the technology required for an advanced civilization, the founders instilled in the colonists a strict code of conduct and gave them a few precious imprinting devices: glass helmets that contain all of Earth's scientific knowledge.Once in a generation, the heir to the province of Laal begins the arduous training required to survive the imprinting of the Glass Helm and acquire the knowledge of the lost Earth. But Leland de Laal, the youngest son of one of Agatsu's greatest leaders, has climbed the forbidden rock spire where the Helm is kept and donned it, unaware that its knowledge has a terrible price. To an unprepared mind, it brings madness, agony, and even death."One of the coolest consequences of Leland's premature imprinting is that he's picked up knowledge of aikido. With further training he hones his martial arts skill and the fighting in the story is filled with slick descriptions of it. This story is filled with chases, battles, double-crossing, betrayal, dark dealings, and many fights with sword, staff, and arrow. Although set in the far-future, Agatsu's society is medieval. Makes for a very fun tale.
bluesalamanders on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was a gift from a friend and I liked it a lot. It is technically science fiction - space travel, colonizing another planet, some advanced technology - but after the prologue, about the first 10 pages, it reads like a fantasy. I thought the quirk of the Helm was done pretty well, and I liked that several seemingly-unimportant events that happened at various points in the story had much farther reaching, and occasionally much more dramatic, consequences than were obvious at the time.
roworthing on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I would love to read another book set in this world!
rivkat on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I¿d call this a YA novel, though it does have enough sex in it to make you notice (I hear that¿s a thing with YA books generally these days, as it is with sf). The invention of the imprinter, which can convey information instantly or convert people into true believers in anything, triggers a religious war that destroys Earth, leaving only a few survivors in search of a new home for humanity. Reluctantly, the folks in charge send imprinters with the spaceship they send out, trying to preserve knowledge and promote ethics that will enable the small colony to survive. Hundreds of years later, things haven¿t gone entirely as planned, with only one imprinter left and its function largely not understood: It is the Helm. A teenage boy, the son of the enlightened ruler of his province, recklessly tries it on and gets a dose of martial arts (and other) knowledge from a long-ago source. His father wanted to use the Helm, which charges slowly, for an older son, but he works with what he¿s got, training young Leland to use his new memories. Leland is soon swept up in various battles, political and sword-clashing, and struggles to use his powers for good. His Mary-Suelike super-competence was a little too much for me even with the imprinting, but that¿s a pretty standard YA trope. Another weakness was that Gould pulled a lot of punches, with coincidences coming to save people who probably should have died. Nonetheless, the setting was provocative, especially the hints of different philosophical stances towards the use of the imprinter. I¿d definitely read the story of how the imprinter destroyed the world.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just reread it for the third time :)
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