Saturday, 7 February 2015


Copied from Poul Anderson Appreciation, 7 Feb '15.

Diana Crowfeather is "...everybody's friend..." (Flandry's Legacy, p. 196) just as Kim is "'...The Friend of all the World...'" (Kim, p. 6).

The city of Olga's Landing on the planet Imhotep in the Patrician System began as an exploration base. Guns in the tower of St Barbara provided defense against stampeding ice bull herds and later against human beings during the Troubles but now the disarmed tower, sunseeker vine clambering up its crumbling yellow stone, stands in the middle of a market square in the old quarter.

From the tower, Diana sees the new sector with industries, hotels, apartments, the Institute and the Pyramid housing Imperial offices but she prefers the old quarter with its:

"...brawling, polyglot, multiracial population, much of it transient, drifting in and out on the tides of space." (ibid.)

Imhotep seems as real as Kipling's India.