Empress of Forever

Tor. Jun. 2019. 480p. ISBN 9780765395818. pap. $18.99; ebk. ISBN 9780765395832. SF
OrangeReviewStarVivian Liao is a technology genius and billionaire who runs afoul of the government and decides to disappear—but first, she breaks into a data farm that has used her code, planning to take over the world before the government takes her. She doesn't expect to be attacked by a glowing green woman in a crown, wake up naked in a puddle of goop after escaping a giant egg, be attacked by robots, save a monk, or end up in space. As Viv learns about the Empress, the Cloud that binds all of existence, and her "soullessness" for existing outside of this Cloud network, she gains otherworldly allies, if not friends, as she attempts to return to Earth. Viv discovers that the Empress wants to stop another enemy, a mission that will ultimately destroy everything in the process. Vivian is an amazing woman: with no more than her sharp wit in a universe of AIs and enhanced beings, she still ends up being the key to the truth.
VERDICT Gladstone's (Ruin of Angels) epic space opera and fast-paced adventure will thrill readers.
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