Mary Ellen's Reviews > The Quickening Maze

The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds
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's review
Nov 24, 11

Read in November, 2011

I was undecided as to three or four stars on this one. It is very well written; in particular, the author is able to write in very varied, individual voices: persons suffering from various delusions; a rather manic inventor/scientist with ethical issues; a self-involved not-yet-great poet; a teenaged girl seeking escape from her difficult and dull situation through marriage; a child simultaneously ignored and spoiled by her parents; an enraged minor nobleman... The narrative shifts from one perspective to another, with the effect of a braiding of plots. Definitely four stars - 4 1/2 - for the skill of the author. Three, because in all these voices, there was none that resonated with me, none that I would want to spend much time with. Yet even there, the author is quite skilled: although I feel I know these people, the tightly written, disciplined book in nicely brief, requiring that we spend very little time with its cast of either unsympathetic, or where sympathetic, very "out there" characters.

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