13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
One of the best post-holocaust stories ever,
This review is from: Dreamsnake (Mass Market Paperback)
Dreamsnake is one of only 15 books to win both the Hugo and the Nebula. As such, I had high hopes for it, and I was not disappointed. True, it doesn't have ground-breaking vision of books like Gateway or Ringworld, but what it lacks there, it more than makes up in conventional world-building and, even more importantly, characterization.
The story takes place in a post-holocause Earth, where a limited amount of bio-technology is all that is keeping humanity to shrinking back to a hunter-gatherer society. The most obvious example of this is the dreamsnake, whose venom enables healers to ease the pain of the wounded, and comfort the dying. Snake, the main character, is such a healer. However, her dreamsnake is killed, and she must seek out another, or cease to be a healer. The story carries the reader from the Great Dessert, to the healer station where they breed dreamsnakes (with little luck), to Center, the sole spaceport where humans from off-world still come, and finally to the mysterious domes. And as we explore this compelling world, we also get to explore the inner workings of Snake, and see what makes her tick.
However, while the story is a very pleasing one most of the way through, one gets to the end and can't shake the feeling that the author left some important questions unanswered. This story is definitely ripe for a sequel, but McIntyre doesn't look to be very interested. Pity.