Review: Madness in Solidar

Book Reviews

Madness in Solidar

L.E. Modesitt, Jr.
Tor Books
Street: 03.03

While I’ll openly admit that Modesitt’s got a talent for introducing rich detail into his political plots, Madness in Solidar took some serious patience to get through. That patience was certainly rewarded—eventually—but only after a healthy serving of exposition through oftentimes frankly tedious dialogue. In fact, so much of this book is consumed with long-winded pleasantries and minor conversations that it’s easy to lose track of the real meat of the plot. All frustrations aside, once Madness in Solidar actually gets rolling, it’s a hell of a ride. Modesitt’s got a real talent for creating believable, practical systems of magic, and The Imager Portfolio is no exception. Alastar’s flexible potential for imaging makes each action scene feel unpredictable and inventive. For a book that starts so unbearably slow, Modesitt seems to relish the opportunity to unwind his tightly-woven plot, and the last half of this book goes by pretty quick. Just be ready to navigate a political minefield to get there. –Henry Glasheen