Picks and Pans Review: The Mutant Season

updated 01/08/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 01/08/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

by Robert Silverberg and Karen Haber

In this science fiction novel, the mutants are different from you and me. They have golden eyes. Some have telepathic and/or telekinetic powers. And they have been with us for 600 years. But in the year 2017, after centuries of clannishness and persecution, they are taking their place in society—even the U.S. Senate—and exciting prejudice among nonmutants. The premises in this first collaboration of husband wife team Silverberg, an oft-honored sci-fi writer, and Haber are intriguing, but so they should be in a genre where authors have all of space and time to play with.

The prose, however, is leaden, especially when it comes to the characters' personal lives. Nowhere is the writing sillier than in a silly Romeo and Juliet romance between a mutant boy and a normal girl.

For this novel, Haber wrote, Silverberg edited. If they insist on a next time—they have projected the mutant concept as a series—they might try switching duties. It I can't hurt. (Doubleday, $18.95, paper, $8.95)

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