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The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order by Stephen R. Donaldson Review

Title: The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order

Author: Stephen R. Donaldson

First published June 1, 1994

617 pages, Hardcover

ISBN: 9780553071795 (ISBN10: 0553071793)

Rating: 4.17


In Stephen R. Donaldson’s thrilling novel, The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order, a group of unlikely allies must fight for survival after narrowly escaping the destruction of planetoid Thanatos Minor.

The ragtag crew of the Trumpet includes former UMC cop Morn Hyland, her alien-raised son Davies, ruthless space buccaneer Nick Succorso, and cyborg Angus Thermopyle. Pursued by a police ship and targeted by a dark directive from the mysterious Dragon, the crew must battle for control of their ship and their own minds in a final showdown that will determine the fate of the galaxy.

With uncharted comets, planets, and asteroid swarms as their battleground, this epic tale of skill and survival will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the very end.

About the Author

Stephen Reeder Donaldson is an accomplished author who has written extensively in the genres of fantasy, science fiction, and mystery. While he is known as Stephen Donaldson in the United Kingdom, he is recognized as Stephen R.

Donaldson in his home country of America. He has also written non-fiction under the pen name Reed Stephens.

Donaldson was born on May 13, 1947, in Cleveland, Ohio. His father, James, was a medical missionary, and his mother, Ruth, was a prosthetist.

During his childhood, Donaldson lived in India for 13 years, where his father worked as an orthopaedic surgeon. He obtained his bachelor’s degree from The College of Wooster and a master’s degree from Kent State University.

Donaldson’s writing is heavily influenced by other fantasy authors, such as J.R.R. Tolkien, Roger Zelazny, Joseph Conrad, Henry James, and William Faulkner. He has expressed admiration for Patricia A.

McKillip, Steven Erikson, and Tim Powers.

It is said that his father’s speech on leprosy, made while working with lepers in India, was the inspiration behind his creation of Thomas Covenant, the anti-hero of his most famous work. Despite receiving 47 rejections, Donaldson’s perseverance paid off when a publisher finally accepted his first book in the Thomas Covenant series.

Donaldson’s most prominent work is The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, which was published in 1977. The series revolves around the character of Thomas Covenant, a leper who is ostracized by society.

The books detail his journey and struggles as his fate unfolds. These books established Donaldson as a key figure in modern fantasy literature.

Currently, Donaldson resides in New Mexico.

Editoral Review

Stephen R. Donaldson’s The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order is a science fiction novel that was first published on June 1, 1994.

Donaldson, a prolific American author, is renowned for his compelling characters, intricate plots, and vivid descriptions. His Gap series, of which this sixth book is a part, is set in a distant future where humanity has colonized several planets and developed faster-than-light travel, but is still plagued by political intrigue, social upheaval, and conflict.

The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order is a haunting and intense book that guides the reader through a series of challenges as the relentless battle between good and evil unfolds. The book follows the exploits of several key characters, including a space pirate, a military commander, and an ambitious politician, all of whom are grappling with different moral dilemmas, personal losses, and political pressures.

The setting is a future in which an Earth-based corporate entity, the United Mining Companies (UMC), rules the galaxy with an iron fist, often to the detriment of the colonies and their indigenous populations.

The central conflict of the book arises from the fact that the UMC is threatened by a new, powerful enemy that is emerging from the Gap itself, a dangerous and mysterious region of space filled with unexplained phenomena, deadly hazards, and unknown entities.

The UMC must find a way to defend itself and to keep control of the galaxy while the new threat looms larger and more menacing with each passing day.

Donaldson delivers a masterful work with The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order.

The book is filled with vivid and harrowing descriptions of space travel, combat, and alien encounters. The characters are layered, complex and realistically drawn, making them relatable and memorable.

Donaldson’s pacing is fast, but he still manages to ground the story in an unwavering sense of realism. The use of alternating points of view helps to add depth to the storyline and to keep the reader fully engaged.

However, the book is not without its flaws. The complexity of the storyline and the large number of characters may be overwhelming to some readers, and the book’s graphic violence may prove to be too much for some.

Also, the novel does not offer a conclusive ending, drawing instead the reader to the next book of the series for a resolution of the key questions.

Overall, The Gap Into Madness: Chaos and Order is a spellbinding piece of science fiction that will challenge readers with its complex characters, intricate storyline, and vivid settings.

Fans of the genre will appreciate Donaldson’s style and depth while newcomers to both the books and to the series will find an intriguing story that keeps their attention from start to finish. Highly recommended for anyone looking for an epic sci-fi read that transports them to an entirely different universe.

Rating: 4.5/5.0

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