Masamune Shirow

Orion is set in an alternative timeline in which the universe is directly impacted by magic and karma. In an attempt to counteract all the bad karma the Greater Galaxy People's Empire has gathered, a scientist/sorcerer tries to destroy it through his experiment. Master Fuzen, a legendary priest, brings his daughter Seska in, in hopes of averting the possible apocalyse that might be caused by the scientists flawed experiment.

Unlike previous sci-fi based stories from Masamune, Orion doesn't use technology or cyborgs to populate it's world. Characters use magic and magical and demonic entities are abound. Some Lovecraftian overtones are hinted in these otherworldly beings.

Overall, this is a nice change of pace from Shirow's mainstream work in Ghost in the Shell and Appleseed. Some of the side text trying to explain the view on the balance of karma and internal energies tends to get a bit "heady" and sometimes bogs down the story. The action is reserved and the outcome of the story is in doubt until the end.

Consider this one a good read, even with the obtuse story elements.

- - Vane

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