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Andre Norton (1912–2005)

Autor(a) de The Elvenbane

379+ Works 67,038 Membros 698 Reviews 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 de Andre Norton

The Elvenbane (1991) 2,363 cópias
Elvenblood (1995) 1,733 cópias
O trílio negro (1990) 1,596 cópias
Witch World (1963) 1,254 cópias
Elvenborn (2002) 1,081 cópias
Star Man's Son (1952) 903 cópias
Tiger Burning Bright (1995) 834 cópias
Year of the Unicorn (1965) 813 cópias
Web of the Witch World (1964) 800 cópias
The Time Traders (1958) 766 cópias
Catseye (1961) 747 cópias
Three against the Witch World (1965) 709 cópias
The Crystal Gryphon (1973) — Autor — 696 cópias
Warlock of the Witch World (1967) 678 cópias
Sorceress of the Witch World (1968) 673 cópias
The Zero Stone (1968) 672 cópias
Spell of the Witch World (1972) 638 cópias
Sargasso of Space (1958) 633 cópias
Plague Ship (1956) 632 cópias
The Beast Master (1959) — Autor — 616 cópias
Golden Trillium (1993) 610 cópias
Galactic Derelict (1959) 592 cópias
Star Gate (1958) 575 cópias
Key Out of Time (1963) 566 cópias
The Jargoon Pard (1974) 565 cópias
Forerunner Foray (1973) 565 cópias
Lord of Thunder (1962) 559 cópias
Horn Crown (1981) 556 cópias
Trey of Swords (1977) 551 cópias
Star Born (1957) 549 cópias
Catfantastic (1989) — Editor — 547 cópias
Merlin's Mirror (1975) 541 cópias
Storm Over Warlock (1960) 528 cópias
The Defiant Agents (1962) 514 cópias
The Last Planet (1953) — Autor — 510 cópias
Star Soldiers (2001) 504 cópias
Gryphon in Glory (1981) — Autor — 497 cópias
Star Guard (1955) 486 cópias
Quag Keep (1978) 481 cópias
Moon of Three Rings (1966) 481 cópias
'Ware Hawk (1983) 470 cópias
Shadow Hawk (1960) — Autor — 463 cópias
Forerunner (1981) 462 cópias
The Crossroads of Time (1956) 462 cópias
Scent of Magic (1998) 456 cópias
Iron Cage (1974) 451 cópias
Time Traders (2000) 449 cópias
The X Factor (1965) — Autor — 448 cópias
Lore of the Witch World (1980) — Autor — 444 cópias
Uncharted Stars (1969) 442 cópias
The Gate of the Cat (1987) 432 cópias
Breed to Come (1972) 427 cópias
Night of Masks (1964) 423 cópias
Postmarked the Stars (1969) — Autor — 423 cópias
Ice Crown (1970) 422 cópias
Zarsthor's Bane (1978) 420 cópias
Dark Piper (1968) 414 cópias
Gryphon's Eyrie (1984) 413 cópias
The Stars Are Ours! (1954) 402 cópias
Ordeal in otherwhere (1964) 402 cópias
The Shadow of Albion (1999) 400 cópias
High sorcery (1970) 397 cópias
Lavender-Green Magic (1974) — Autor — 393 cópias
No Night Without Stars (1975) 381 cópias
Operation Time Search (1967) 380 cópias
Exiles of the Stars (1971) 375 cópias
Catfantastic II (1991) — Editor — 373 cópias
Dread Companion (1970) 371 cópias
Wraiths of Time (1976) 370 cópias
Here Abide Monsters (1973) 368 cópias
Victory on Janus (1966) — Autor — 366 cópias
Quest Crosstime (1965) — Autor — 365 cópias
Secret of the Lost Race (1959) 364 cópias
Flight in Yiktor (1986) 363 cópias
Judgement on Janus (1963) — Autor — 362 cópias
Huon of the Horn (1951) 361 cópias
The Gates to Witch World (2003) — Autor — 360 cópias
Dragon Magic (1972) 357 cópias
Voorloper (1980) 339 cópias
Perilous Dreams (1976) 331 cópias
Yurth Burden (1978) 318 cópias
SongSmith (1992) 315 cópias
Wind in the Stone (1999) 314 cópias
Forerunner: The Second Venture (1985) 313 cópias
Garan the Eternal (1973) 312 cópias
Warding of the Witch World (1996) 306 cópias
Mirror of Destiny (1995) 300 cópias
Key of the Keplian (1995) 296 cópias
Brother to Shadows (1993) 295 cópias
Catfantastic III (1994) — Editor — 289 cópias
Steel Magic (1965) 285 cópias
Star Hunter & Voodoo Planet (1961) 284 cópias
Dare to Go A-Hunting (1989) 275 cópias
The Sioux spaceman (1960) 275 cópias
Catfantastic IV (1996) — Editor — 271 cópias
Knave of Dreams (1975) 266 cópias
Moon Called (1982) 264 cópias
Storms of Victory (1991) — Autor — 261 cópias
The Mark of the Cat (1992) 261 cópias
Android at Arms (1971) 260 cópias
The Duke's Ballad (2005) 260 cópias
Red Hart Magic (1976) 257 cópias
Wheel Of Stars (1983) 255 cópias
Ralestone Luck (1938) 253 cópias
Star Ka'at (1976) — Autor — 249 cópias
To The King a Daughter (2000) 248 cópias
Sea Siege (1957) 244 cópias
Leopard in Exile (2001) 241 cópias
Redline the Stars (1993) 240 cópias
A Mind for Trade (1997) 228 cópias
The Hands of Lyr (1994) 226 cópias
The Magestone (1996) 226 cópias
Derelict for Trade (1997) 223 cópias
Wizards' Worlds (1989) 219 cópias
Flight of Vengeance (1992) 219 cópias
Tales of the Witch World (1987) — Editor — 218 cópias
Octagon Magic (1967) 218 cópias
Imperial Lady (1989) — Autor — 216 cópias
Catfantastic V (1999) — Editor — 212 cópias
Voodoo Planet (1956) 205 cópias
Eye of the Monster (1962) 200 cópias
Ciara's Song (1998) 199 cópias
Echoes in Time (1999) 191 cópias
Knight or Knave (2001) 191 cópias
The Prince Commands (1934) 188 cópias
Silver May Tarnish (2005) 188 cópias
Beast Master's Circus (2004) 184 cópias
On Wings of Magic (1994) 183 cópias
Four From the Witch World (1989) 177 cópias
Beast Master's Ark (2002) 177 cópias
Star Ka'at World (1978) — Autor — 174 cópias
Fur Magic (1968) 173 cópias
Atlantis Endgame (1967) 172 cópias
Warlock (1960) 169 cópias
Empire of the Eagle (1993) 169 cópias
Firehand (1994) 166 cópias
A Taste of Magic (2006) 164 cópias
Magic in Ithkar (1985) — Editor — 164 cópias
Moon Mirror (1988) 164 cópias
Beast Master's Quest (2006) 164 cópias
Three Hands for Scorpio (2005) 163 cópias
Darkness & Dawn (2003) 155 cópias
A Crown Disowned (2002) 148 cópias
Tales of the Witch World 3 (1990) — Editor — 147 cópias
Tales of the Witch World 2 (1988) — Editor — 147 cópias
Renaissance Faire (2005) — Editor; Contribuinte — 135 cópias
The opal-eyed fan (1977) 131 cópias
Moonsinger (2006) 129 cópias
Star Hunter (1961) 129 cópias
Janus (2002) 126 cópias
Chronicles of the Witch World (1965) 123 cópias
The White Jade Fox (1975) 121 cópias
Magic in Ithkar 3 (1986) — Editor — 115 cópias
Magic in Ithkar 2 (1985) — Editor — 112 cópias
The Solar Queen (2003) 111 cópias
Seven Spells to Sunday (1979) 108 cópias
Dragon Mage (2008) 108 cópias
Dark Companion (1968) — Autor — 107 cópias
Gods and Androids (2004) — Autor — 101 cópias
Magic in Ithkar 4 (1987) 98 cópias
Star Ka'ats and the Plant People (1979) — Autor — 97 cópias
Dragon Blade (2005) 96 cópias
Return to Quag Keep (2006) — Autor — 94 cópias
House of Shadows (1985) 92 cópias
Snow Shadow (1979) 91 cópias
Iron Butterflies (1980) 87 cópias
Ride Proud, Rebel! (1961) 87 cópias
Masks of the Outcasts (1961) 86 cópias
Outside (1974) 81 cópias
Sneeze on Sunday (1992) 81 cópias
Velvet Shadows (2001) 79 cópias
Lost Lands of Witch World (1998) 76 cópias
Ten Mile Treasure (1981) 70 cópias
The Gifts of Asti [short story] (1948) — Autor — 69 cópias
Grand Masters' Choice (1989) 67 cópias
Rebel Spurs (1962) 62 cópias
Scarface (1948) 61 cópias
Star Flight (2007) 57 cópias
The Knight of the Red Beard (2008) 56 cópias
At swords' points (1954) 56 cópias
The Game of Stars and Comets (2009) 52 cópias
The Forerunner Factor (1973) 50 cópias
Search for the Star Stones (2008) 48 cópias
Stand & Deliver (1984) 47 cópias
The Sioux Spaceman / And Then the Town Took Off (1960) — Contribuinte — 47 cópias
From the Sea to the Stars (1957) 45 cópias
The Sword is Drawn (1944) 45 cópias
Crosstime (2008) — Autor — 45 cópias
Time traders III (2002) 43 cópias
Plague Ship / Voodoo Planet (1956) 42 cópias
Sword in Sheath (1949) 39 cópias
The Stars are Ours! / 3 Faces of Time (Ace Double D-121) (1955) — Contribuinte — 39 cópias
The Monster's Legacy (1996) 39 cópias
Moonsinger's Quest (2005) 37 cópias
The Iron Breed (2013) 36 cópias
Ice and Shadow (2012) 35 cópias
Stand to Horse (1956) 34 cópias
Small Shadows Creep (1974) — Editor — 33 cópias
Children of the Gates (2013) 30 cópias
Quag Keep & Return to Quag Keep Omnibus (1978) — Autor — 30 cópias
The Day of the Ness (1975) 28 cópias
Star Ka'ats and the Winged Warriors (1981) — Autor — 26 cópias
Rogue Reynard (1947) 25 cópias
Forerunner: The Defender (1981) 18 cópias
Secret of the Stars (2014) 17 cópias
Space Pioneers (1954) — Editor — 16 cópias
Yankee Privateer (1955) 16 cópias
Were-Wrath (1984) 14 cópias
Space Service (1953) — Editor — 13 cópias
Secrets of the Witch World (2001) 12 cópias
Ride the Green Dragon (1985) 12 cópias
The Beast Master (abridged) (1964) — Autor — 11 cópias
Murders for Sale (1953) — Autor; Pseudonym, algumas edições11 cópias
Caroline (1759) 11 cópias
Space Police (1956) — Editor — 8 cópias
The Toads Of Grimmerdale (1973) 8 cópias
Serpent's Tooth (1987) 7 cópias
Beastmaster 2: Through the Portal of Time (2010) — Writer — 6 cópias
Andre Norton Super Pack (2015) 5 cópias
Port of Dead Ships (1991) 5 cópias
Spider Silk (1976) 5 cópias
Lamps on the Brow (1998) 4 cópias
Garan, der Ewige (1973) 4 cópias
The Outling 4 cópias
Falcon Blood [short story] (1979) 4 cópias
Traum ohne Wiederkehr (1976) 3 cópias
Svět čarodějnic (1993) 3 cópias
Toys Of Tamisan (1969) 3 cópias
Falcon Hope (1999) 3 cópias
Wolfshead (1977) 2 cópias
The Andre Norton Collection (2018) 2 cópias
Dream Smith [short story] (1972) 2 cópias
Catfantastic Collection (1989) 2 cópias
MONDI PERICOLOSI (1991) 2 cópias
El planeta de las brujas (1972) 2 cópias
Earthborne 2 cópias
The Way Wind 2 cópias
Ship of Mist [short story] (1976) 2 cópias
Through the ice 1 exemplar(es)
Il mondo delle streghe. (1979) 1 exemplar(es)
Le Miroir De Merlin (1983) 1 exemplar(es)
Horn Crown hb 1 exemplar(es)
Gray Mare's Colts, The 1 exemplar(es)
O Castigo dos Yurth 1 exemplar(es)
Scarface r 1 exemplar(es)
Here Abode Monsters 1 exemplar(es)
Pani Krainy Mgieł (1998) 1 exemplar(es)
O Castigo dos Yurth (1982) 1 exemplar(es)
Cat Fantastic III 1 exemplar(es)
Science Fiction Special 27 (1978) — Contribuinte — 1 exemplar(es)
Władca Gromu 1 exemplar(es)
Pakt Sokolników (1995) 1 exemplar(es)
The Beast Mage 1 exemplar(es)
Set in Stone 1 exemplar(es)
Procession to Var 1 exemplar(es)
Hob's Pot [short story] 1 exemplar(es)
Through The Needle's Eye 1 exemplar(es)
Tales of the Witch World 3, Part 2 (1998) 1 exemplar(es)
One Spell Wizard 1 exemplar(es)
Dragon MAster 1 exemplar(es)
Sow's Ear—silk Purse 1 exemplar(es)
By a Hair [short story] 1 exemplar(es)
Changeling [short story] 1 exemplar(es)
Nightmare [short story] 1 exemplar(es)
Lampart (1993) 1 exemplar(es)
Le Fardeau des Yurths (1978) 1 exemplar(es)
Island of the lost 1 exemplar(es)
Star Ka'ats (2020) 1 exemplar(es)
Krev elfů (1999) 1 exemplar(es)
Urania 1156 - LIMBO 1 exemplar(es)
Sargasso of Space [abridged] — Autor — 1 exemplar(es)
Limbo 1 exemplar(es)
Statek plag (1992) 1 exemplar(es)
Witch World Series 1 exemplar(es)
Ingarets Fluch (1972) 1 exemplar(es)
Magia stali (1993) 1 exemplar(es)
Amber out of Quayth [novella] (1972) 1 exemplar(es)
The stars are ours! 1 exemplar(es)

Associated Works

The Princess and the Goblin (1872) — Posfácio, algumas edições5,307 cópias
After the King (1991) — Contribuinte — 753 cópias
Gate of Ivrel (1976) — Introdução, algumas edições750 cópias
Fantasy Stories (1994) — Contribuinte — 317 cópias
DAW 30th Anniversary Fantasy Anthology (2002) — Contribuinte — 300 cópias
Return to Avalon (1996) — Prefácio, algumas edições243 cópias
Amazons! (1979) — Contribuinte — 237 cópias
Grails: Quests of the Dawn (1992) — Contribuinte — 233 cópias
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy, Volume 12: Faeries (1991) — Contribuinte — 205 cópias
Flashing Swords! #2 (1973) — Contribuinte — 196 cópias
Lord of the Fantastic: Stories in Honor of Roger Zelazny (1998) — Contribuinte — 169 cópias
Sisters in Fantasy (1995) — Contribuinte — 158 cópias
Hecate's Cauldron (1982) — Contribuinte — 146 cópias
Treasures of Fantasy (1997) — Contribuinte — 141 cópias
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy, Volume 2: Witches (1984) — Contribuinte — 131 cópias
A Magic-Lover's Treasury of the Fantastic (1998) — Contribuinte — 131 cópias
Flashing swords! #3 : warriors and wizards (1976) — Contribuinte — 131 cópias
Arabesques: More Tales of the Arabian Nights (1988) — Contribuinte — 127 cópias
Elf Fantastic (1997) — Contribuinte — 125 cópias
Isaac Asimov's Magical Worlds of Fantasy, Volume 4: Spells (1942) — Contribuinte — 125 cópias
Witches: Wicked, Wild, and Wonderful (2012) — Contribuinte — 114 cópias
The SFWA Grand Masters, Volume 2 (2000) — Contribuinte — 111 cópias
On Crusade: More Tales of the Knights Templar (1998) — Contribuinte — 106 cópias
Warrior Enchantresses (1996) — Contribuinte — 105 cópias
Merlin (1999) — Contribuinte — 101 cópias
A Constellation of Cats (2001) — Contribuinte — 99 cópias
Magical Beginnings (2003) — Contribuinte — 99 cópias
Swordsmen in the sky (1964) — Contribuinte — 95 cópias
The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy (2000) — Contribuinte — 90 cópias
The DAW science fiction reader (1976) — Contribuinte — 89 cópias
Visions of Wonder (1996) — Contribuinte — 89 cópias
Heroic Fantasy (1979) — Contribuinte — 88 cópias
Magic Tails (2005) — Contribuinte — 85 cópias
Wizard Fantastic (1997) — Contribuinte — 85 cópias
Knight Fantastic (2002) — Contribuinte — 85 cópias
A Dangerous Magic (1999) — Contribuinte — 83 cópias
Ancient Enchantresses (1995) — Contribuinte — 81 cópias
Perchance to Dream (2000) — Contribuinte — 79 cópias
Mammoth Book of Short Fantasy Novels (1986) — Contribuinte, algumas edições77 cópias
Familiars (2002) — Contribuinte — 74 cópias
Swords Against Darkness II (1977) — Contribuinte — 74 cópias
Women of Futures Past: Classic Stories (2016) — Contribuinte — 70 cópias
The Many Worlds of Science Fiction (1971) — Contribuinte — 65 cópias
A Century of Fantasy, 1980-1989 (1996) — Autor — 62 cópias
100 Astounding Little Alien Stories (1996) — Contribuinte — 59 cópias
Guardsmen of Tomorrow (2000) — Contribuinte — 51 cópias
The Wounded Planet (1973) — Contribuinte — 48 cópias
Far Frontiers (2000) — Contribuinte — 46 cópias
Alien Earth and Other Stories (1969) — Autor, algumas edições40 cópias
Baker's Dozen: 13 Short Fantasy Novels (1984) — Contribuinte — 39 cópias
L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future, Volume XVIII (2002) — Contribuinte — 39 cópias
The Williamson Effect (1996) — Contribuinte — 38 cópias
Oceans of Space (2002) — Contribuinte — 35 cópias
Science Fiction Adventure from Way Out (1973) — Contribuinte — 30 cópias
Sense of Wonder: A Century of Science Fiction (2011) — Contribuinte — 29 cópias
The New Roger Caras Treasury of Great Cat Stories (1997) — Contribuinte — 24 cópias
Grails: Quests, Visitations and Other Occurrences (1992) — Contribuinte — 23 cópias
The Bank Street Book of Science Fiction (1989) — Contribuinte — 22 cópias
Le livre d'or de la Science-Fiction : Le manoir des roses (1978) — Contribuinte — 20 cópias
Historical Hauntings (2001) — Contribuinte — 19 cópias
Baleful Beasts and Eerie Creatures (1976) — Introdução — 19 cópias
The Time Curve (1968) — Contribuinte — 19 cópias
Cassandra Rising (1978) — Prefácio — 18 cópias
All Hallow's Eve (1992) — Contribuinte — 14 cópias
Maid-At-Arms (1981)algumas edições13 cópias
The Gifts of Asti, and other stories of science fiction (1975) — Contribuinte — 11 cópias
Young Star Travelers (1986) — Contribuinte — 10 cópias
Worlds of Fantasy, Vol. 1 No. 2, September 1970 (1970) — Contribuinte — 9 cópias
Sci-Fi WOMANthology (Ackermanthologies) (2003) — Contribuinte — 8 cópias
Long Night of Waiting and Other Stories (1974) — Contribuinte — 7 cópias
Atlantis ist überall. (1981) — Contribuinte — 5 cópias
The Dragon Magazine, No. 12 (1978) — Contribuinte — 3 cópias
Kämpfer wider den Tod (1975) 1 exemplar(es)


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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 | outras 7 resenhas | 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 | outras 8 resenhas | 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 | outras 12 resenhas | 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 | outras 7 resenhas | Nov 23, 2023 |



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