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Powers That Be (The Petaybee Trilogy) Paperback – 1 Aug 1994

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; New edition edition (1 Aug. 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552140988
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552140980
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 2.5 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 619,093 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Book Description

The first collaboration between two of science fiction's mightiest names.

From the Back Cover

It was a world of ice and snow - a planet that just supported life and that had been terraformed from frozen uninhabitable rock. The people of Petaybee were hardy, self-reliant, friendly - and also very secretive.

Major Yana Maddock, medically discharged from the service, was shipped to Petaybee in the hope that her burnt-out lungs might just recover in the icy air. And at the last moment, she was given a special commission. Unauthorized life-forms had been seen on the planet and, more seriously, geologic survey teams had vanished into nowhere, the odd survivor being discovered abandoned and insane. It was Yana's task to infiltrate Petaybee society and find out who - or what - was causing the eerie events on the planet.

She discovered a primitive ice-bound community of extraordinary people - people who possessed some mysterious quality of surviving - and people who Yana discovered she both liked and revered as she found herself becoming one of them.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Suzy r on 27 July 2002
Format: Hardcover
A compelling world, good characters - including the animals
and a good story. Its an artic world with a difference.
Husky dog teams, cold weather and hot springs. The local
inhabitants are under pressure from the military and our
heroine Yanaba Maddoc gets involved.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Fantasy Lore on 11 April 2008
Format: Paperback
I wanted to enjoy this book. I bought the whole trilogy before even reading this first story purely on the pedigree of its authors. I was expecting to be as engrossed as I had been by the `Catteni Sequence' by Anne McCaffrey, or one of the handful of short stories I'd previously sampled by Elizabeth Anne Scarborough. But while there are positive attributes, which I'll go into later, sadly `Powers That Be' makes for a surprisingly shallow and disappointing read and one that I'm surprised has spawned so many sequels.

I expected that the pooling of the talents of these two highly regarded fantasy writers would result in an enthralling and original space-faring epic, but while the planet of Petaybee can be described as exhibiting life-signs, none of the characters, or indeed the linear plot offer anything beyond a lifeless experience for the reader. The central protagonist is the prime example- Yabana `Yana' Maddock is totally unappealing. Her skills as an investigator (the reason for which her superiors ordered her to settle on Petaybee) are laughably non-existent and her suspicion of the residents of the planet dissipates in a very unconvincingly short space of time. There's also no depth to any of the characters beyond what takes place within the narrow confines of the plot and because they're awarded so little back-story it's very difficult to empathise with of them.

I would say, however that this story is worth reading for the solid prose alone, especially if you're a fan of either contributor whose eager to read something, anything by one of these successful authors. But be aware that with such astonishingly two-dimensional characters and an undeniably tepid plot, it's not a novel to become so enthused over that you rush to read the next installment.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 16 Sept. 1999
Format: Paperback
I'm a huge McCaffrey fan, and this start to the Petaybe trio is just as good as the dragon books! A great buy, the others in this series are nearly as good, and round the story of Yana and the people and planet of Petaybe off really well. I have read this book dozens of times since I bought it, and it's just as good every time!
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