Psychohistorical Crisis

{4.5/5} “A good psychohistorian was as much a composer as he was a seer. Rigid musicians made bad music. Could Nejirt tell the difference between the traditions that actually buttressed the foundations of society and the thousands of trivial traditions, mere baroque decorations?”

Psychohistorical Crisis by Donald Kingsbury, published in 2001

Eron Osa used to be a psychohistorian but he did something so horrible that they destroyed his fam. Now he doesn’t have a job and he doesn’t know why — but he will find out. Psychohistory is working as usual, but it has enemies — including the secret Smythosonians, who have been around for thousands of years.

We go back 20 years to see how Eron became a psychohistorian. As in Asimov’s books the crisis is resolved with talking rather than fighting.

The prose is a bit dense, but perseverance is rewarded. You feel like you’re in a universe with a lot of history. Unfortunately it wasn’t officially authorized so Kingsbury has changed all the names.

It’s about the role of stasis in galactic affairs. The characters are terrific and it builds to a splendid conclusion.

This is the 1st book by Kingsbury I’ve read.

Within the Foundation series, I previously reviewed Foundation’s Triumph.

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