Two popular fantasy/sf authors who collaborated on the best-selling Powers That Be ( LJ 5/15/93) have produced an environmentally correct sequel about a living, sentient planet in danger of being plundered for its mineral resources.
In this sequel to Powers That Be , the hardworking inhabits of the sentient planet Petaybee continue their struggles with the magnates controlling Intergal Company. While chairperson Dr. Whittaker Fiske has been convinced of the planet's intelligence--and the necessity of negotiating with it--other members of the board believe that he and the Petaybeans are suffering from a collective delusion. Two representatives arrive to investigate: the first, Marmion de Revers Algemeine, maintains an open mind, but cultural anthropologist Matthew Luzon uses his training to cheat non-technical cultures out of their heritage. A group of Petaybeans and sympathizers set out for other villages to win over those willing to continue mining despite the planet's requests to stop. After numerous convoluted plot turns, a Petaybean resistance leads to a satisfactory conclusion. This lackluster tale suffers from excessive sentimentality, while characters are no better developed than in the first volume. Both independently and together, these collaborators have displayed their gifts to better advantage elsewhere. (July)