Thursday, February 4, 2010

A Novel: The Spell of Rosette

I’ve been very involved this week in The Spell of Rosette by Kim Falconer, a Voyager title published in 2009. Given the title and front cover illustration I was expecting fantasy. Even the back cover blurb does not give the secret away, speaking as it does of witches, spells, a shape-shifting high priestess, wolf-like Lupins and witch familiars such as Drayco the temple cat.

another missing image, Google's doing

It was when I read the prologue that my jaw dropped. JARROD is a sentient quantum computer? What’s a sentient, quantum, computer doing in a fantasy tale? Or is it science fiction? Science fantasy? A new cross-over genre?

Probably all of the above, with fantasy definitely in there too. Very comfortably under the speculative fiction umbrella, I quote from the back cover, Rosette is a child of two worlds: Gaela, steeped in magic, and an Earth choked with failing technology. The key to their survival is literally in her blood, a spell passed down through her family line to preserve the one they’ve sworn to protect.

The indications for a cross genre tale are all there, though not so in-your-face that fantasy readers are scared off. Note how ‘spell’ can refer to magic as we know it as well as mean a formula for action by a computer.

Is this a tale for hard sf readers? I hope so. Though the science is still theoretical, working as it does with the quantum theories Einstein wouldn’t consider. Readers in the vast middle of the science fiction/fantasy spectrum? Definitely. I recommend it to you. Let me know if you enjoy it?

There are also Kim Falconer’s sites where she explains her theories, supporting them with many references.

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