As the concluding work in the Quintaglio series of planetary destruction, this book draws together many elements introduced earlier. Although ostensibly a dinosaur, Afsan's character grows more human with each volume. As a reflection of current Euro-North American society, Foreigner is hard to beat. That reflection may be too vivid for some. Sawyer has a fine talent for portraying reality, whether on an imaginary planet or right next door. This series remains a challenging read.
A trilogy of sub-plots keeps your interest alive through the main theme. The saurians are learning about their own world while striving for the means to escape it. Sawyer depicts the violent mental disruptions of racism with talent. Although dinosaurs mate for reproductive ends, he manages to introduce a new feature of their lives, jealousy versus loyalty. While the accounts of Novato, Afsan's mate and his son Toroca are compelling, it's the relationship of Afsan, the continuing primary character in this series, that renders this book worthy of note. His association with the practitioner of the new therapy of psychology makes hilarious reading. Mokleb, the 'therapist,' is a marvelous rendition of the money-grubbing cockroaches that infest Earth's cities today. She's a Freudian, of course, with all the fanciful ideas of conscious and subconscious ['high' and 'low' mind] and dream interpretation that has bled many a bank account dry during the past century. Her negotiation with Afsan over payment for the therapy sessions is too vividly real to be missed.
If you are new to Sawyer, by all means start the trilogy at the beginning and follow it through this volume. You will learn much about your own world as Sawyer reflects it in Afsan's. The series is a good addition to any library of speculative fiction. The only truly speculative part of Sawyer's works is the 'people' portrayed and their location in the cosmos. [stephen a. haines - Ottawa, Canada]