The Web of Spider
- W. Michael Gear
- July 1989 Daw
- K: B007AJP900
the web of the spider
By Michael Gear
Sometimes when we read epics and mythology we forget the cost of being a hero. I see this trilogy as an epic. Joseph Campbell described Star Wars as the modern myth. But the majority of the reading public have not looked into the following books, other than those made into movies. They don’t look into the cost of being heroes. The Spider trilogy looks at the anthropomorphic ideology of lost, heroics, and cultural change in a new and exciting way. The aspect that a vulnerable culture can influence the dominating society. Like Star Wars there are heroes, trying to save the universe, they have a great evil to overcome, and the evil they thought they were fighting was not the true evil. Like Luke Skywalker thinking that his enemy is the Darth Vader, as leader of the Empire, to find it was the emperor Palpatine. The characters in Spider think at first it is the Doctorate that is enemy, only to find the more villainous Ngen Van Chow, is a more devastating and diabolical evil. They have to join forces with those that would have destroyed them outright to win the war for the greater good.
Michael Gear said that Ngen’s character cost him a friendship, as I read through this book I can understand how someone could fear a person who imagines an evil so great. I can see how your trust would be shaken by the villainy, destitute personality that is Ngen. But as I looked close to the terrifying character that is the antagonist for this book I found that Michael Gear’s character showed his perception of the depth and worth of the human soul. How can you thoroughly destroy something if you can not see its full value. If you smash a pot, not knowing it’s from the Ming Dynasty and worth so much to history, of an economic value, your would not understand its lost. And its destruction would be from ignorance. Ngen was a corrupt, insane, unstable personality born from poverty and perversion, that shaped him into a monster that thought he was God. He lost the value of a human life, of a human soul. Michael Gear himself shows his appreciation in these books by his heroes risking everything to combat his most evil character. That they would risk everything they love and their own sanity to provide the galaxy the ability have free will.
The story brings the characters from the light through the dark and out the other side, they lose all they know, and understand, only to learn something they can teach Spider (god) about themselves and about life. Tested by horrors and terrors that make even the reader cringe away from the page, as you read in desperation that your beloved character could survive something so devastating.
The story line goes along with the multiverse that the prophets partake in.. at least what i get from Mike…. That cusps of man is provided by God (spider) to allow free will. The hindus believe that we live life over and over again just to learn. Physics have come up with the question if the universe does not expand, explode, compress, expand, explode, compress again and again as i understand the research.
I find myself drawn to the main characters, from the books, the love of Iron Eyes and Leeta, Iron Eyes and Rita, but most of all Susan. It was so hard for me to face Ngen and his room of terrors because I saw the story more from Susan’s eyes than any other. Maybe because I can understand the depth of pain, and haunted memories is not far from my own life.
James Birch Review
Well, I finally finished the Spider trilogy! In contrast to the “People of the…” books, the Spider trilogy, credited to Michael Gear, is science fiction and takes place in a distant future dominated by interstellar faster-than-light travel. The “primitive” planet World is inhabited by Native Americans who worshipped a god known as Spider, and Hispanics, who worshipped a god called “Haysoos.” Both groups had been exiled from Earth by the ruling Soviets many hundreds of years before and, unknown to the rest of civilization, had crash landed on an inhabitable world. The two groups were in constant battle with each other. In contrast, most of known civilization has been peaceful and docile for many hundreds of years. Because their weapons were old and their armies untested, they fell victim to the schemes of a diabolical and merciless renegade who claimed to be a deity, but who used advanced mind-control techniques to turn most of his subjects into mindless automatons. Although the back and forth battles were sometimes a bit too brutal for me, in the end the followers of Spider were able to instill enough courage and battle tactics into the rest of civilization to defeat the evil.
One thing I especially liked about this series is the strong female characters. They weren’t just window dressing. I also liked that not all the “good guys” lived happily ever after. Sorry if this is way too long…