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Saturday, 16 October 2010

Tales Of The Dying Earth

While researching my last post (i.e. searching in Amazon) I came across a remarkable offer: Jack Vance's Tales of the Dying Earth for just £6.49.

It's made up of all four Dying Earth books: The Eyes of the Overworld, Cugel's Saga, Rhialto the Marvellous, and of course The Dying Earth itself. These were such enjoyable stories. I think they embody Jack Vance's particular writing style more than anything else he wrote. And all that for £6.49.

Also for sale is Songs of the Dying Earth, a collection of tribute stories written by other authors. Projects like this are hard to pull off successfully. The authors run the risk of either missing the essential charm of the original, or looking like a weak pastiche.

Michael Shea wrote a sequel to The Eyes of the Overworld called A Quest for Simbilis, which was well written but fell into the first trap. I can remember nothing at all about it now other than my disappointment. But a few years after that I read his Nifft the Lean, which still sticks in my mind more than two decades later.

I notice there is a sequel to Nifft the Lean. Also, that Songs of the Dying Earth is available for the Kindle.

I suddenly get an overwhelming urge to go back to my backlog of books.