The Gardens of Delight
Timescape Books, 1982
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In The Gardens of Delight Ian Watson boldly lands a starship within the hallucinatory terrain of Hieronymus Bosch's painting The Garden of Earthly Delights, a medieval masterpiece which enchants and horrifies all who see it, for the picture shows what looks to be a paradise of pleasure yet it also displays a terrible hell of torments. And so the ship's psychologist, Sean Athlone, and two women companions explore the luxurious landscape of giant fruits and birds and strange towers and naked celebrating people, in quest of the godlike alien intelligence that has transformed a planet according to Bosch's vision, populating it with the colonists from a previous starship.
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