Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Just Read: Lyonesse Book 1 by Jack Vance

Last night I finished the first book of the Lyonesse trilogy by Jack Vance.  It was a very interesting read. 

The book was published in 1983 but reminds me more of the work of James Branch Cabell, who wrote 50 years earlier, than it does any contemporary author.  It's told in the third person and lacks much of the detailed description that dominates the modern fantasy.  It also eschews any pretense at reality and takes the magical and fantasy elements to levels I associate more with fairytale and myth than a modern story.   At no point did a witch turn a pumpkin into a carriage or poison an apple with a sleeping spell but that's the exact kind of story being told - albeit with sex and violence enough that you probably wouldn't read it to your ten year old.

I'm not complaining either.  Too many genre novels borrow with a heavy hand from their popular  predecessors.  So while not exactly unique it was refreshingly different and a fun read.  

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