Oh, how I salivated during the long wait for Infinity Gate by M. R. Carey, the brilliant author of The Rampart Trilogy! Even when I held the book in my hands, I deferred the read, because surely it would be magnificent. Well, I can report that while this wonderful author’s sure-footed writing style and plotting control are as fine as ever, Infinity Gate is over stuffed with inventiveness and world-building, to the detriment of immersion. The overarching premise is copious, if time honored: the world is a million-fold world of multiverses presided over by an autocratic Pandominium. Into the Pandominium blunders a brilliant scientist seeking to escape her dying planet, and crashing separately into the Pandominium is a contrasting multiverse of worlds run by Artificial Intelligences. A war and an interposing individual … in the meantime, the author inserts a beleaguered no-hoper and an enterprising rabbit, whose adventures catapult the universe into chaos and potential end times. M. R. Carey builds this ever-so-ambitious world with huge verve and elan, yet with such enthusiasm that the overall plot can seem lost. And plot detours sidetrack the reader down canyons of wild (if brilliantly portrayed) multiverse fantasia. The end result of reading Infinity Gate was to be bewildered and impressed, without any payout (as yet) in terms of emotional attachment, so the inevitable cliffhanger climax, pointing to the second volume in a duology, leaves me waiting for Number Two, due partway through 2024.