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Andre Norton (1912–2005)

Autor(a) de The Elvenbane

378+ Works 66,983 Membros 698 Críticas 137 Favorited

About the Author

Born Alice Mary Norton on February 17, 1912 in Cleveland, Ohio, she legally changed her name to Andre Alice Norton in 1934. She attended the Flora Stone Mather College of Western Reserve University (now Case Western Reserve) for a year then took evening courses in journalism and writing that were mostrar mais offered by Cleveland College, the adult division of the same university. Norton was a librarian for the Cleveland Library System then a reader at Gnome Press. After that position, she became a full-time writer. She is most noted for writing fantasy, in particular the Witch World series. Her first book The Prince of Commands was published in 1934. Other titles include Ralestone Luck, Magic in Ithkar, Voorloper, Uncharted Stars, The Gifts of Asti and All Cats are Gray. She also wrote under the pen names Andre Norton, Andrew North and Allen Weston She was the first woman to receive the Gandalf Grand Master of Fantasy and the Nebula Grand Master Award. She has also received a Phoenix Award for overall writing achievement, a Jules Verne Award, and a Science Fiction Book Club Book of the Year Award for her title The Elvenbane. In 1997 she was inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame. She died on March 17, 2005. (Bowker Author Biography) mostrar menos
Image credit: OrangeCon, 1978.


Obras por Andre Norton

The Elvenbane (1991) 2,361 exemplares
Elvenblood (1995) 1,732 exemplares
Black Trillium (1990) 1,596 exemplares
Witch World (1963) 1,253 exemplares
Elvenborn (2002) 1,080 exemplares
Star Man's Son (1952) 902 exemplares
Tiger Burning Bright (1995) 834 exemplares
Year of the Unicorn (1965) 812 exemplares
Web of the Witch World (1964) 800 exemplares
The Time Traders (1958) 763 exemplares
Catseye (1961) 747 exemplares
Three against the Witch World (1965) 709 exemplares
The Crystal Gryphon (1973) — Autor — 695 exemplares
Warlock of the Witch World (1967) 677 exemplares
Sorceress of the Witch World (1968) 673 exemplares
The Zero Stone (1968) 670 exemplares
Spell of the Witch World (1972) 637 exemplares
Sargasso of Space (1958) 632 exemplares
Plague Ship (1956) 630 exemplares
The Beast Master (1959) — Autor — 615 exemplares
Golden Trillium (1993) 609 exemplares
Galactic Derelict (1959) 591 exemplares
Star Gate (1958) 574 exemplares
Key Out of Time (1963) 566 exemplares
Forerunner Foray (1973) 564 exemplares
The Jargoon Pard (1974) 564 exemplares
Lord of Thunder (1962) 559 exemplares
Horn Crown (1981) 556 exemplares
Trey of Swords (1977) 551 exemplares
Star Born (1957) 548 exemplares
Catfantastic (1989) — Editor — 547 exemplares
Merlin's Mirror (1975) 541 exemplares
Storm Over Warlock (1960) 528 exemplares
The Defiant Agents (1962) 513 exemplares
The Last Planet (1953) — Autor — 509 exemplares
Star Soldiers (2001) 503 exemplares
Gryphon in Glory (1981) — Autor — 497 exemplares
Star Guard (1955) 486 exemplares
Moon of Three Rings (1966) 480 exemplares
Quag Keep (1978) 479 exemplares
'Ware Hawk (1983) 469 exemplares
Shadow Hawk (1960) — Autor — 463 exemplares
Forerunner (1981) 461 exemplares
The Crossroads of Time (1956) 461 exemplares
Scent of Magic (1998) 456 exemplares
Iron Cage (1974) 451 exemplares
The X Factor (1965) — Autor — 448 exemplares
Time Traders (2000) 448 exemplares
Lore of the Witch World (1980) — Autor — 445 exemplares
Uncharted Stars (1969) 441 exemplares
The Gate of the Cat (1987) 432 exemplares
Breed to Come (1972) 427 exemplares
Postmarked the Stars (1969) — Autor — 422 exemplares
Ice Crown (1970) 422 exemplares
Night of Masks (1964) 421 exemplares
Zarsthor's Bane (1978) 420 exemplares
Dark Piper (1968) 414 exemplares
Gryphon's Eyrie (1984) 413 exemplares
The Stars Are Ours! (1954) 402 exemplares
Ordeal in otherwhere (1964) 402 exemplares
The Shadow of Albion (1999) 400 exemplares
High sorcery (1970) 396 exemplares
Lavender-Green Magic (1974) — Autor — 392 exemplares
No Night Without Stars (1975) 381 exemplares
Operation Time Search (1967) 380 exemplares
Exiles of the Stars (1971) 374 exemplares
Catfantastic II (1991) — Editor — 372 exemplares
Dread Companion (1970) 370 exemplares
Wraiths of Time (1976) 370 exemplares
Here Abide Monsters (1973) 368 exemplares
Quest Crosstime (1965) — Autor — 365 exemplares
Victory on Janus (1966) — Autor — 365 exemplares
Secret of the Lost Race (1959) 364 exemplares
Judgement on Janus (1963) — Autor — 362 exemplares
Flight in Yiktor (1986) 361 exemplares
Huon of the Horn (1951) 361 exemplares
The Gates to Witch World (2003) — Autor — 359 exemplares
Dragon Magic (1972) 357 exemplares
Voorloper (1980) 339 exemplares
Perilous Dreams (1976) 331 exemplares
Yurth Burden (1978) 318 exemplares
SongSmith (1992) 315 exemplares
Wind in the Stone (1999) 314 exemplares
Forerunner: The Second Venture (1985) 313 exemplares
Garan the Eternal (1973) 312 exemplares
Warding of the Witch World (1996) 306 exemplares
Mirror of Destiny (1995) 300 exemplares
Key of the Keplian (1995) 295 exemplares
Brother to Shadows (1993) 295 exemplares
Catfantastic III (1994) — Editor — 289 exemplares
Steel Magic (1965) 285 exemplares
Star Hunter & Voodoo Planet (1961) 284 exemplares
Dare to Go A-Hunting (1989) 275 exemplares
The Sioux spaceman (1960) 275 exemplares
Catfantastic IV (1996) — Editor — 271 exemplares
Knave of Dreams (1975) 266 exemplares
Moon Called (1982) 264 exemplares
Storms of Victory (1991) — Autor — 261 exemplares
The Mark of the Cat (1992) 260 exemplares
Android at Arms (1971) 260 exemplares
The Duke's Ballad (2005) 259 exemplares
Red Hart Magic (1976) 257 exemplares
Wheel Of Stars (1983) 255 exemplares
Ralestone Luck (1938) 252 exemplares
Star Ka'at (1976) — Autor — 249 exemplares
To The King a Daughter (2000) 247 exemplares
Sea Siege (1957) 244 exemplares
The Many Worlds of Andre Norton (1974) 243 exemplares
Leopard in Exile (2001) 241 exemplares
Redline the Stars (1993) 240 exemplares
A Mind for Trade (1997) 228 exemplares
The Hands of Lyr (1994) 226 exemplares
The Magestone (1996) 225 exemplares
Derelict for Trade (1997) 223 exemplares
Wizards' Worlds (1989) 219 exemplares
Flight of Vengeance (1992) 219 exemplares
Octagon Magic (1967) 218 exemplares
Tales of the Witch World (1987) — Editor — 218 exemplares
Imperial Lady (1989) — Autor — 216 exemplares
Catfantastic V (1999) — Editor — 212 exemplares
Voodoo Planet (1956) 205 exemplares
Eye of the Monster (1962) 200 exemplares
Ciara's Song (1998) 199 exemplares
Echoes in Time (1999) 191 exemplares
Knight or Knave (2001) 190 exemplares
Silver May Tarnish (2005) 188 exemplares
The Prince Commands (1934) 188 exemplares
Beast Master's Circus (2004) 184 exemplares
On Wings of Magic (1994) 183 exemplares
Four From the Witch World (1989) 177 exemplares
Beast Master's Ark (2002) 177 exemplares
Star Ka'at World (1978) — Autor — 174 exemplares
Fur Magic (1968) 173 exemplares
Atlantis Endgame (1967) 172 exemplares
Warlock (1960) 169 exemplares
Empire of the Eagle (1993) 169 exemplares
Firehand (1994) 166 exemplares
Moon Mirror (1988) 164 exemplares
Beast Master's Quest (2006) 164 exemplares
Magic in Ithkar (1985) — Editor — 164 exemplares
Three Hands for Scorpio (2005) 163 exemplares
A Taste of Magic (2006) 162 exemplares
Darkness & Dawn (2003) 155 exemplares
A Crown Disowned (2002) 148 exemplares
Tales of the Witch World 3 (1990) — Editor — 147 exemplares
Tales of the Witch World 2 (1988) — Editor — 147 exemplares
Renaissance Faire (2005) — Editor; Contribuidor — 135 exemplares
The opal-eyed fan (1977) 131 exemplares
Star Hunter (1961) 129 exemplares
Moonsinger (2006) 129 exemplares
Janus (2002) 126 exemplares
Chronicles of the Witch World (1965) 123 exemplares
The White Jade Fox (1975) 121 exemplares
Magic in Ithkar 3 (1986) — Editor — 115 exemplares
Magic in Ithkar 2 (1985) — Editor — 112 exemplares
All Cats Are Gray [short story] (1953) 112 exemplares
The Solar Queen (2003) 111 exemplares
Dragon Mage (2008) 108 exemplares
Seven Spells to Sunday (1979) 108 exemplares
Dark Companion (1968) — Autor — 107 exemplares
Gods and Androids (2004) — Autor — 101 exemplares
Magic in Ithkar 4 (1987) 98 exemplares
Star Ka'ats and the Plant People (1979) — Autor — 97 exemplares
Dragon Blade (2005) 96 exemplares
Return to Quag Keep (2006) — Autor — 94 exemplares
House of Shadows (1985) 92 exemplares
Snow Shadow (1979) 91 exemplares
Iron Butterflies (1980) 87 exemplares
Ride Proud, Rebel! (1961) 87 exemplares
Eye of the Monster / Sea Siege (1957) 87 exemplares
Masks of the Outcasts (1961) 86 exemplares
Outside (1974) 81 exemplares
Sneeze on Sunday (1992) 81 exemplares
Velvet Shadows (2001) 79 exemplares
Lost Lands of Witch World (1998) 76 exemplares
Ten Mile Treasure (1981) 70 exemplares
The Gifts of Asti [short story] (1948) — Autor — 69 exemplares
Grand Masters' Choice (1989) 67 exemplares
Rebel Spurs (1962) 62 exemplares
Scarface (1948) 61 exemplares
Star Flight (2007) 57 exemplares
The Knight of the Red Beard (2008) 56 exemplares
At swords' points (1954) 55 exemplares
Mark of the Cat / Year of the Rat (2002) 54 exemplares
The Game of Stars and Comets (2009) 52 exemplares
The Forerunner Factor (1973) 50 exemplares
Search for the Star Stones (2008) 48 exemplares
Stand & Deliver (1984) 47 exemplares
The Sioux Spaceman / And Then the Town Took Off (1960) — Contribuidor — 47 exemplares
Crosstime (2008) — Autor — 45 exemplares
From the Sea to the Stars (1957) 45 exemplares
Star Born / A Planet for Texans (1958) 44 exemplares
The Sword is Drawn (1944) 44 exemplares
Time traders III (2002) 43 exemplares
Plague Ship / Voodoo Planet (1956) 42 exemplares
The Monster's Legacy (1996) 39 exemplares
The Stars are Ours! / 3 Faces of Time (Ace Double D-121) (1955) — Contribuidor — 39 exemplares
Sword in Sheath (1949) 39 exemplares
Star Guard / Planet of No Return (1956) 38 exemplares
Moonsinger's Quest (2005) 37 exemplares
The Iron Breed (2013) 36 exemplares
Ice and Shadow (2012) 35 exemplares
Stand to Horse (1956) 34 exemplares
Small Shadows Creep (1974) — Editor — 33 exemplares
Witch World: High Hallack Cycle (2018) 33 exemplares
Children of the Gates (2013) 30 exemplares
Quag Keep & Return to Quag Keep Omnibus (1978) — Autor — 30 exemplares
The Day of the Ness (1975) 28 exemplares
Star Ka'ats and the Winged Warriors (1981) — Autor — 26 exemplares
Rogue Reynard (1947) 25 exemplares
Gates to Tomorrow: An Introduction to Science Fiction (1973) — Editor — 21 exemplares
Halfblood Chronicles (1 to 3) (1997) 18 exemplares
Forerunner: The Defender (1981) 18 exemplares
Secret of the Stars (2014) 17 exemplares
Space Pioneers (1954) — Editor — 16 exemplares
Yankee Privateer (1955) 16 exemplares
Were-Wrath (1984) 14 exemplares
Space Service (1953) — Editor — 13 exemplares
Ride the Green Dragon (1985) 12 exemplares
Secrets of the Witch World (2001) 12 exemplares
Caroline (1759) 11 exemplares
The Beast Master (abridged) (1964) — Autor — 11 exemplares
Murders for Sale (1953) — Autor; Pseudonym, algumas edições11 exemplares
The Science Fiction Anthology (2019) 10 exemplares
The Toads Of Grimmerdale (1973) 8 exemplares
Space Police (1956) — Editor — 8 exemplares
The Works of Andre Alice Norton (2009) 7 exemplares
Serpent's Tooth (1987) 7 exemplares
Beastmaster 2: Through the Portal of Time (2010) — Writer — 6 exemplares
Andre Norton Super Pack (2015) 5 exemplares
Spider Silk (1976) 5 exemplares
Port of Dead Ships (1991) 5 exemplares
Falcon Blood [short story] (1979) 4 exemplares
Garan, der Ewige (1973) 4 exemplares
Lamps on the Brow (1998) 4 exemplares
The Outling 4 exemplares
Falcon Hope (1999) 3 exemplares
Toys Of Tamisan (1969) 3 exemplares
Sword of Unbelief [short story] (1977) 3 exemplares
Traum ohne Wiederkehr (1976) 3 exemplares
Svět čarodějnic (1993) 3 exemplares
Ritorno a Estcarp 2 exemplares
The Way Wind 2 exemplares
The Andre Norton Collection (2018) 2 exemplares
Ship of Mist [short story] (1976) 2 exemplares
Teddi [short story] 2 exemplares
Earthborne 2 exemplares
Dream Smith [short story] (1972) 2 exemplares
MONDI PERICOLOSI (1991) 2 exemplares
El planeta de las brujas (1972) 2 exemplares
Catfantastic Collection (1989) 2 exemplares
Wolfshead (1977) 2 exemplares
Il mondo delle streghe. (1979) 1 exemplar
Horn Crown hb 1 exemplar
Le Miroir De Merlin (1983) 1 exemplar
Through the ice 1 exemplar
Cat Fantastic III 1 exemplar
O Castigo dos Yurth (1982) 1 exemplar
Science Fiction Special 27 (1978) — Contribuidor — 1 exemplar
Pani Krainy Mgieł (1998) 1 exemplar
Władca Gromu 1 exemplar
Pakt Sokolników (1995) 1 exemplar
Set in Stone 1 exemplar
The Beast Mage 1 exemplar
Procession to Var 1 exemplar
Lampart (1993) 1 exemplar
One Spell Wizard 1 exemplar
Dragon MAster 1 exemplar
Statek plag (1992) 1 exemplar
Sargasso of Space [abridged] — Autor — 1 exemplar
Le Fardeau des Yurths (1978) 1 exemplar
Island of the lost 1 exemplar
Star Ka'ats (2020) 1 exemplar
Krev elfů (1999) 1 exemplar
Limbo 1 exemplar
Witch World Series 1 exemplar
Ingarets Fluch (1972) 1 exemplar
Magia stali (1993) 1 exemplar
Ice crown 1 exemplar

Associated Works

The Princess and the Goblin (1872) — Posfácio, algumas edições5,299 exemplares
After the King (1991) — Contribuidor — 753 exemplares
Gate of Ivrel (1976) — Introdução, algumas edições750 exemplares
Fantasy Stories (1994) — Contribuidor — 317 exemplares
DAW 30th Anniversary Fantasy Anthology (2002) — Contribuidor — 300 exemplares
Return to Avalon (1996) — Prefácio, algumas edições242 exemplares
Amazons! (1979) — Contribuidor — 237 exemplares
Grails: Quests of the Dawn (1992) — Contribuidor — 233 exemplares
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy, Volume 12: Faeries (1991) — Contribuidor — 205 exemplares
Flashing Swords! #2 (1973) — Contribuidor — 196 exemplares
Lord of the Fantastic: Stories in Honor of Roger Zelazny (1998) — Contribuidor — 169 exemplares
Sisters in Fantasy (1995) — Contribuidor — 158 exemplares
Hecate's Cauldron (1982) — Contribuidor — 146 exemplares
Treasures of Fantasy (1997) — Contribuidor — 141 exemplares
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy, Volume 2: Witches (1984) — Contribuidor — 131 exemplares
A Magic-Lover's Treasury of the Fantastic (1998) — Contribuidor — 131 exemplares
Flashing swords! #3 : warriors and wizards (1976) — Contribuidor — 131 exemplares
Arabesques: More Tales of the Arabian Nights (1988) — Contribuidor — 127 exemplares
Elf Fantastic (1997) — Contribuidor — 125 exemplares
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy, Volume 4: Spells (1942) — Contribuidor — 125 exemplares
Witches: Wicked, Wild, and Wonderful (2012) — Contribuidor — 114 exemplares
The SFWA Grand Masters, Volume 2 (2000) — Contribuidor — 110 exemplares
On Crusade: More Tales of the Knights Templar (1998) — Contribuidor — 106 exemplares
Warrior Enchantresses (1996) — Contribuidor — 105 exemplares
Merlin (1999) — Contribuidor — 101 exemplares
A Constellation of Cats (2001) — Contribuidor — 99 exemplares
Magical Beginnings (2003) — Contribuidor — 99 exemplares
Swordsmen in the sky (1964) — Contribuidor — 95 exemplares
The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy (2000) — Contribuidor — 90 exemplares
The DAW science fiction reader (1976) — Contribuidor — 89 exemplares
Visions of Wonder (1996) — Contribuidor — 89 exemplares
Heroic Fantasy (1979) — Contribuidor — 88 exemplares
Magic Tails (2005) — Contribuidor — 85 exemplares
Wizard Fantastic (1997) — Contribuidor — 85 exemplares
Knight Fantastic (2002) — Contribuidor — 85 exemplares
A Dangerous Magic (1999) — Contribuidor — 83 exemplares
Ancient Enchantresses (1995) — Contribuidor — 81 exemplares
Perchance to Dream (2000) — Contribuidor — 79 exemplares
Mammoth Book of Short Fantasy Novels (1986) — Contribuidor, algumas edições77 exemplares
Familiars (2002) — Contribuidor — 74 exemplares
Swords Against Darkness II (1977) — Contribuidor — 74 exemplares
Women of Futures Past: Classic Stories (2016) — Contribuidor — 69 exemplares
The Many Worlds of Science Fiction (1971) — Contribuidor — 64 exemplares
A Century of Fantasy, 1980-1989 (1996) — Autor — 62 exemplares
100 Astounding Little Alien Stories (1996) — Contribuidor — 59 exemplares
Guardsmen of Tomorrow (2000) — Contribuidor — 51 exemplares
The Wounded Planet (1973) — Contribuidor — 48 exemplares
Far Frontiers (2000) — Contribuidor — 46 exemplares
Alien Earth and Other Stories (1969) — Autor, algumas edições40 exemplares
Baker's Dozen: 13 Short Fantasy Novels (1984) — Contribuidor — 39 exemplares
L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future, Volume XVIII (2002) — Contribuidor — 39 exemplares
The Williamson Effect (1996) — Contribuidor — 38 exemplares
Oceans of Space (2002) — Contribuidor — 35 exemplares
Science Fiction Adventure from Way Out (1973) — Contribuidor — 30 exemplares
Sense of Wonder: A Century of Science Fiction (2011) — Contribuidor — 29 exemplares
The New Roger Caras Treasury of Great Cat Stories (1997) — Contribuidor — 24 exemplares
Zoo 2000: Twelve Stories of Science Fiction and Fantasy Beasts (1973) — Contribuidor — 23 exemplares
Grails: Quests, Visitations and Other Occurrences (1992) — Contribuidor — 23 exemplares
The Bank Street Book of Science Fiction (1989) — Contribuidor — 22 exemplares
Le livre d'or de la Science-Fiction : Le manoir des roses (1978) — Contribuidor — 20 exemplares
Historical Hauntings (2001) — Contribuidor — 19 exemplares
Baleful Beasts and Eerie Creatures (1976) — Introdução — 19 exemplares
The Time Curve (1968) — Contribuidor — 19 exemplares
Cassandra Rising (1978) — Prefácio — 18 exemplares
All Hallow's Eve (1992) — Contribuidor — 14 exemplares
Maid-At-Arms (1981)algumas edições13 exemplares
The Gifts of Asti, and other stories of science fiction (1975) — Contribuidor — 11 exemplares
Young Star Travelers (1986) — Contribuidor — 10 exemplares
Worlds of Fantasy, Vol. 1 No. 2, September 1970 (1970) — Contribuidor — 9 exemplares
Sci-Fi WOMANthology (Ackermanthologies) (2003) — Contribuidor — 8 exemplares
Long Night of Waiting and Other Stories (1974) — Contribuidor — 7 exemplares
Atlantis ist überall. (1981) — Contribuidor — 5 exemplares
The Dragon Magazine, No. 12 (1978) — Contribuidor — 3 exemplares
Kämpfer wider den Tod (1975) 1 exemplar


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Conhecimento Comum




I enjoyed this story which is set in the Dales where people without power migrated after the land was abandoned by the Old Ones (who I think moved northwards, from what I read recently in 'The Jargoon Pard' though I don't know why). They have left behind remnants of their magic, including certain ruins and monuments, and those who have some trace of psychic ability are drawn to these, sometimes with ill results.

The book is told from two alternating first person viewpoints. Kerovan is the son of the heir to Ulm keep, but he was born in one of the Old Ones' ruins when his mother's party were forced to shelter from a storm enroute to the shrine of Gunnora. Seemingly as a result (though much later it is explained how his mother's meddling was culpable) he has amber eyes and hooves instead of feet. His mother rejects him, and he is sent away to the foresters to be raised, by an old soldier and a man called Riwal, who is psychic and is studying the Old Ones ruins and broken artefacts, though not for evil purposes.

Over the years, we are told, Kerovan is visited by his father, although that is not actually shown. His father eventually tells him that, given his absence, a lot of rumours have been spread that he is monstrous. He arranges for Kerovan to return to the keep to be acknowledged his heir. It seems odd that his father chose to exile him in this way, but that is eventually explained. For certain members of Kerovan's family are in league with dark forces.

Joisan, meanwhile, is the niece of the ruler of another stronghold. Her uncle agrees to betroth her to Kerovan, with the eventual marriage mooted for eight years in the future (she is eight and Kerovan is ten). As a girl, Joisan is not able to inherit the rulership of her dale despite the fact that her uncle has no heir - he could make her his heir, but would have to name her as such. Despite this, however, he is quite decent to her throughout her upbringing which is mainly undertaken by his formidable sister, a woman who had previously planned to become a nun (the Dales people follow the worship of the Flame) but had returned to the keep where she was raised to become the chatelaine when her brother's wife died.

As she grows older, Joisan has to contend with rumours about her betrothed, after she is first confronted with them by a spiteful cousin. She commissions a small painting of herself, as is customary, and sends it to Kerovan with a request for the same from him, but never receives one in return. However, he does send her a beautiful necklace - a pendant of a gryphon within a globe which he found near a place of the Old Ones when exploring once with Riwal. The pendant seems to be an object of Power, but of the light. Joisan eventually learns from her uncle that the purpose of her betrothal was to make available the manpower of their Dale in the event that her future husband's inheritance is contested by others in his family.

Into this situation intrudes an invasion by the Hounds of Alizon who feature in series one of the Witch World stories as a threat to Estcarp, and who have colluded with aliens and have access to their technology. The rest of the story takes place against a background of war and hardship, with the added danger provided by members of Kerovan's family, who will stop at nothing to kill him and deepen their connection to the dark forces with which they have already dabbled.

I found this a good page turning read and am awarding it 4 stars.

… (mais)
kitsune_reader | 7 outras críticas | Nov 23, 2023 |
This story follows on from 'The Year of the Unicorn' as I realised when I began reading - although the characters were not named, I could tell that the woman having her baby in the shrine of Gunnora, at the same time as the mother of the narrator of this novel, is Gillan, the woman with powers in that novel, and her husband is Herrel, the Were, or shape shifter who can transform into a snow leopard. They come back into the novel much later.

I also realise on doing this review that I've missed out a couple of volumes in this second Witch World series, book 0 and book 1 - however, I don't think it prevented me from understanding or enjoying this one. Briefly, Heroise, the protagonist's mother, goes to the shrine to have her baby believing it will be a son and through him she will be able to rule, as their land follows the custom of the sister's son of the ruler inheriting. The baby is a girl - but a ready solution presents itself as Gillan is in the room next door having her baby which they realise is a son. The mother's nasty wise woman sidekick Ursilla puts Gillan and her midwife into an entranced sleep and makes them forget so that when they wake up they think the baby girl is her own child.

However, things don't work out as Heroise hoped, as the son, whom she names Kethan, is not the malleable tool she and Ursilla hoped. He is too independent and he also faces enmity within the keep because Heroise's sister-in-law hates him and wants her own son Maughus to succeed the father, against custom. Kethan grows up in an atmosphere of tension and hatred, although this is character building in the long run. His time of trial comes when he is betrothed to Maughus' sister, and her mother gives him a gift to commemorate it - a belt he had already been drawn to when a mysterious trader visited the keep. The belt has the effect of turning him into a pard - a big cat - probably because it brings out his innate gift from his real father, Herrel. Everyone, including him, assumes it is a curse laid on him by the belt. The intention is either to kill him as an animal, or else to denounce him as a thing of the Dark. So he has to go on the run, unable to turn back into his human form, and pursued by multiple enemies.

It is quite a short book in comparison to some of the other Witch World novels and a quick read. It isn't outstanding, but I enjoyed it nevertheless, with the suspense as to whether Kethan would prevail, whether he would learn who his real parents are, and whether he would come into his true heritage. So I would award this a page turning 3 stars.
… (mais)
kitsune_reader | 8 outras críticas | Nov 23, 2023 |
Another re-read of a Witch World novel, this time the first book of those set in or originating in High Hallack, a place of dales abuting onto the Waste or moorlands. This is told from the viewpoint of a young woman called Gillan, who has been raised in the local version of a nunnery and apprenticed to the healer. Gillan is a misfit as she was rescued from a ship of the invading Hounds of Alizon (originally seen as aggressive invaders in the earlier Witch World stories set in the land of Estcarp) and any knowledge of her origins was lost when her rescuer was killed in the war against the Hounds. Although about 8 years old at the time she remembers nothing of her original life, but her physical description - dark hair whereas the High Hallack women are all blondes - is a clue to any reader of the earlier volumes that she most likely originated in Estcarp and therefore may have "witchy" powers. Sure enough, Gillan has always had hunches and other psychic sensations and this witch self is a strong part of her identity.

Gillan finds life in the nunnery stultifying and has no real friends, as the other girls view her as an oddity. So when opportunity offers itself to escape into the unknown on a perilous adventure, she seizes it with both hands. The folk of the dales have had to make a pact with a group of men known as the Were Riders, who are reputed to be shape shifting sorcerors but are also doughty fighters and played a major role in driving off the Hounds. As payment, the Riders requested "twelve and one" brides - young women between the ages of 18 and 20. Gillan contrives with the help of another woman - and the tacit connivance of the abbess - to change places with a girl who is hysterical at the thought of being married off to one of these odd men.

Their reputation proves to be justified when the allocation of brides - there are more Riders than 13 - is settled by ensorcelled cloaks. Only Gillan can see the reality which underlies the glamour spell cast by the Riders, but she is neverthless drawn to the cloak of a rider, Herrel, who is also a misfit, for he is of mixed heritage. This earns the enmity of one Rider in particular and so develops the threat to the pair as first Halse and then other Riders begin to gang up against them.

The story is rather proto feminist - even the independent heroine chooses escape through marriage - but the issue of choice is also paramount. Gillan instinctively avoids a physical relationship although she has never been told she is from Estcarp and that the witch women are reputed to lose their powers with their virginity (although the earlier stories would suggest this is at least in part psychological considering that Jaelle's returned after her marriage). Possibly this suggests a changed premise. The Were Riders are controlling: they ensure the placid conformity of the brides through ensorcelement and they are ruthless in their attempts to crush Gillan, unable to accept her as an equal who is able to see through their illusions.

I enjoyed the story - and wasn't put off by the rather stately and ornate prose, also found in other Witch World books and part of the charm - though I did find the ending slightly weak and for that reason I would rate this at 4 stars.
… (mais)
kitsune_reader | 12 outras críticas | Nov 23, 2023 |
Andre Norton was noted for her unique take on the tropes of science fiction and fantasy and her influence on the genres. In her version of the Arthurian legend, we follow the progress of Merlin/Myrddin with a twist which, as far as I know, having read many Arthurian retellings, is unique.

Two space-faring races have encountered planet Earth in the far distant past. Humanity, under the mentoring of one of them, known as the Star Lords, rose to a technological peak, but civilisation was destroyed in a cataclysm and the survivors reverted to barbarism. Gradually, human beings have clawed their way back up and it is now the time of post-Roman Britain. A beacon placed long ago by the Star Lords guides in one of their automated starships which sets up a base in a cave system and sets out to influence human development, with the aim of eventually restoring the advanced technology of the past.

The first step in the process is to bring about the conception of someone who will work to accomplish certain aims - Myrddin, as he is initially known. We follow the tale of how he is conceived and raised, with the help of an old druid, and gradually comes into his heritage with his discovery of the alien technology in the caves. He must return a certain stone to the Temple of the Sun (pretty obviously Stonehenge) which will activate a new beacon to guide the Star Lords back, as the old one failed some time ago, and also bring about the birth of a leader who will establish peace - Arthur. But an adversary already works against him - a woman called Nimue, the representative of the Star Lords' enemies who do not want humanity to develop a technological society and eventually space flight.

This should have been an absorbing tale given the novel treatment of the well-known legend. And yet the style was quite distant. It is possible to tell an absorbing story even with the older style of omniscient narration, yet here it often set Merlin apart so that it was difficult to relate to his concerns, human as they were. I felt more could have been made of the church's enemity towards him, but there was also a slight continuity glitch. After his unavoidable absence for some years due to Nimue's meddling, he changes his name to Merlin and is supposed to be someone else, as the cryogenic technology in the caves slowed his ageing process, yet everyone still refers to him as having no father, being demon-spawned and the like. That was the rumour about his original self, Myrddin, so why does it persist - years have gone by and no one is meant to remember Myrddin (apart from Nimue), so why should they associate him with someone who hasn't been seen for years and would be older? It's also a bit inconsistent that the church do not target Nimue for their prejudice considering that she is known as a healer, which was something that always brought women under suspicion of witchcraft.

The characters of women - or rather non-characters - suffer greatly in this story. Early on, we are in the viewpoint of the woman who will give birth to Myrddin, but she is rather shallow and can't wait to get married. She is soon sent off stage. A foster nurse has something of a bond with the young boy, but is killed off. Nimue, the main female character, is always trying to seduce Myrddin/Merlin who has to keep himself totally celibate for not very convincing reasons, and doesn't have much of a motive for what she is doing, although there is a little hint of this right at the end of the book which, if it had been brought out sooner, might have been interesting. Morgause is a non-event, only a brood mare to produce Mordred, and Genievere is a shallow woman only interested in being the centre of attention to men: both have small cameo appearances and their importance is more in what they do offstage - Morgause being Nimue's prisoner, then supposedly being the one who spreads the 'truth' about Arthur, and Genievere supporting Mordred against Arthur.

As an informational note, the cover of this edition is rather misleading with its portrayal of the cliched white-bearded old man: Myrddin/Merlin is in his prime, especially in view of the fact that he didn't age at all for at least sixteen years during the story.

Given the distancing narrative style, I found the book slow going although it is not long - only 205 pages. But it took quite a long while to get through which wouldn't nomally be the case for a book of this length. So with this and the other issues, I can only rate it 2 stars.
… (mais)
kitsune_reader | 7 outras críticas | Nov 23, 2023 |



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