Alex B. reviewed The Final Encyclopedia (Childe Cycle) on
Gordon R. Dickson continues to shine with the next installment of his landmark "Childe Cycle." Begun with the story of Donal Graeme in "Dorsai!" and continued with "Necromancer" and "Soldier, Ask Not," among others, Dickson tells of an impending self-destruction of the human race, and one man's fight to avoid it. Hal Mayne is an unusual boy, found in a derelict spaceship at the age of two, raised by three elderly tutors, one an Exotic, one a Friendly, and one a Dorsai, representing each of the three Splinter Cultures that have come to prominence in the Younger Worlds. Hal is forced to flee Old Earth when his tutors are murdered, by a group known as the Others, led by the charismatic Bleys Ahrens. Even with all his training, the question remains... Will he be able to escape their interplanetary reach?
In The Final Encyclopedia the human race is split into three Splinter cultures: the Friendlies, fanatic in their faith; the truth-seeking Exotics; and the warrior Dorsai. But now humanity is threatened by the power-hungry Others, whose triumph would end all human progress. Hal Mayne is an orphan who was raised by three tutors: an Exotic, a Friendly, and a Dorsai. He is the only human capable of uniting humanity against the Others. But only if he is willing to accept his terrifying destiny...as savior of mankind.