Friday, October 13, 2006

The Garden of Iden by Kage Baker

Gripping SF.

It's set in a world where a company called Dr. Zeus has mastered time travel (backwards only, but you can return to your own time) and immortality (but only if you start with young children and replace most of their parts with machinery). They rescue from imminent death, recruit, immortalize and train young children from various eras to work as agents, rescuing lucrative bits of the past and storing them safely for the company to recover far in the future. Mendoza's one of the agents, a spanish child rescued from the Inquisition to become a botanist. Not surprisingly given the situation she was rescued from, she dislikes and fears mortals.

Her first assignment is to collect specimens from Walter Iden's garden of exotic plants. She travels there with Joseph, the agent who rescued her and is now posing as her father, and another agent. And falls in love, unfortunatley for both her and the object of her affections, a mortal Englishman with heretical but devout religious beliefs.

There's a whole series set in this world. I'd like to read more about the company - who runs it? How do they control their immortal, highly enhanced agents?

The scene at the end with monkeys throwing fruit at each other, was unneccessary - the point (people keep having the same pointless conflicts) was clear. Bludgeoning it in with rotton fruit was excessive.

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