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December 31, 2010 > Book Review: Runes of Iona

Book Review: Runes of Iona

A Book Review by Robert A. Garfinkle

The second of four fascinating novels of a series entitled "The Blessings of Gaia" by San Francisco Bay Area author Robert Balmanno, this science fiction novel is set in locales around the world a few decades from now. Devastated by a combination of a global war, which lasts 11 years resulting in over a billion fatalities and massive environmental damage caused by global warming, the ozone layer is depleted. People are dying of sun poisoning except the privileged few that live in parts of major cities protected by domes. This book picks up where Mr. Balmanno's first book, September Snow, left off.

Runes of Iona covers the life and struggles of September Snow's young orphaned daughter, Iona, as she wages a revolution against a ruthless world dictatorship of the Gaia-Domes. As a child, Iona it taught by an aged hermit, Tom Kovak, how to survive in the desert. She then must cross a dead zone wasteland south of the former United States to a secret location in former Mexico that her parents have set aside for her.

Iona's life is in constant danger of discovery by the Gaia-Dome rulers. They intend to kill her and thereby wipe out the last remnants of September Snow. Iona lives alone in caves for a number of years until she meets a young former slave, Kull, The two become a team, raise an army of orphans, teach them how to fight the Gaia rulers, survive battles, and work to restore the ravaged planet.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Mr. Balmanno's second book of the Blessings of Gaia series and look forward to reading the next installment. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the future of our planet. You will not be disappointed.

Runes of Iona by Robert Balmanno
Pp 349 pages; $15.95, paperback
Regent Press ISBN 13:978-1587-158790231)

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