In Endless Twilight by L.E. Modesitt Jr.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The first part is a continuation of his quest to undermine and play a long game to end the Empire by taking away its means to coerce anyone. That was pretty awesome. But it IS a long game and he kinda loses himself, retiring in effect on Old Earth, where ecological damage slowly repairs, thanks to his long efforts.
All of that was pretty cool.
The later bits are where it becomes both a bit creepy and really neat when seen another way.
And that's where I'm of two minds on this last book in the trilogy.
If I judge it by modern sensibilities it is fine up to a few certain scenes when Gershwin is overwhelmed with the weight of all his many, many centuries of memories and he goes kinda nuts. Even that is ok... except for the rapey bits where he imagines that he's reunited with his early, early love. Then it's tragic. And even though it apparently didn't happen more than that once over millennia, he did get a lot of women wanting him naturally, easily, because he IS, after all, a prime specimen. Much smarter than the norm, effectively immortal, and stronger, faster. And he can pass that on.
Much later, many, many people share his characteristics. Mythology surrounds him, the immortal, and the remnants of the old empire are just a memory. I admit I LOVE this kind of thing. So, we win some, we lose some. Overall I think I liked this novel better than the other two because it went out on a strange limb and did something different.
I deduct a star mainly for the rapey bits. No, it's not fair even if the women attack him first, either by stunning him or trying to outright kill him. Maybe I'm weird to think that it's fairer to just kill your attackers. *shrug*
So this is just one of those things, I guess. It doesn't destroy the novel but it sure makes me uncomfortable in a bad way.
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