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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Apr 15, 1984 - Fiction - 502 pages

The fourth and culminating volume in Julian May's dazzling quartet of science-fiction novels brings to a climax the struggle for the Many-Colored Land—the Earth six million years ago—and completes the series that has become an international best-seller and multiple award nominee.

Human time-travelers from the sophisticated Galactic Milieu of the twenty-second century came to the Pliocene Epoch seeking a Garden of Eden. What they found was slavery under the knightly Tanu race, who had been exiled to Earth from a far galaxy. Freed by the usurper Aiken Drum, the humans enjoy a brief period of dominance. But now King Aiken's rule is threatened by the dwarfish Firvulag, who scheme to destroy both humans and Tanu in the nightfall War, a ritual Gotterdammerung that had been postponed when Tanu and Firvulag were banished to Pliocene Earth.

This menace becomes almost incidental when Aiken discovers that his realm is about to be invaded by another human who possesses metapsychic powers even greater than Aiken's own. He is Marc Remillard, the Adversary, instigator of the Metapsychic Rebellion, who nearly conquered the Milieu, and then fled through the time-gate after his defeat. Marc and his surviving followers come against Aiken when it seems that a new time-gate is about to be built—one that will provide a two-way portal between the Many-Colored Land and the future world of the Milieu.

The Adversary, like its predecessors (The Many-Colored Land, The Golden Tore, and The Nonborn King), combines science and fantastic imagery with rousing adventure, humor, and an optimistic view of the human character as it contends against mental and physical perils.


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User Review  - johnylitnin - LibraryThing

THE ADVERSARY follows the interwoven relationships of people from each of the five groups, plus the reluctant arbiter of them all, Elizabeth Orme. Elizabeth supports the aims of King Aiken and his ... Read full review

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User Review  - amf0001 - LibraryThing

The 4th in the Pliocene Era saga, this is space opera before the term was really coined. I loved it when I first read it, and definitely liked it now, but can see it's age. It's not as sophisticated ... Read full review


PART I The Subsumption
PART II The Convergence
PART III Nightfall
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About the author (1984)

Julian May (1931–2017) was a staple of the early science fiction community and the 2015 winner of the First Fandom Hall of Fame Award. Her short science fiction novel, Dune Roller, was published in 1951, aired on American television in 1952 as part of the Tales of Tomorrow series, and went on to a BBC adaptation and a 1972 movie. She chaired the Tenth World Science Fiction Convention, making her the first woman to chair a Worldcon. The Many-Colored Land, the first book in her Saga of the Pliocene Exile, won the Locus Best Novel Award in 1982 and was nominated for both Hugo and Nebula awards, as well as the Mythopoeic, Prometheus, and Geffen awards.

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