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Doorways in the Sand de Roger Zelazny

Doorways in the Sand (original: 1975; edição: 1976)

de Roger Zelazny

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1,1561812,977 (3.9)15
The disappearance of a star-stone model, a reproduction of an alien artifact, leads to rivalry between interstellar communities.
Título:Doorways in the Sand
Autores:Roger Zelazny
Informação:Avon Books (1976)

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Doorways in the Sand de Roger Zelazny (1975)


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Mostrando 1-5 de 18 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Zelazny wrote this book in the mid-1970’s, first in serial form in ‘Analog Science Fiction and Science Fact’ and then later released in hardcover and paperback. It was nominated for Nebula and Hugo awards. This book came along about in middle of Zelazny’s career, after Lord of Light and in the middle of his Chronicles of Amber series. He himself, rated this among his top five personal favorites.

The book is written in first person (except the last chapter) and follows Fred Cassidy, an odd, witty, sarcastic, long-time university student, who has an obsession with heights and climbing buildings. The story is set in the near future, with air scooters and flying cars, and most importantly, recent contact with aliens. The plot focuses on a mystery -- a missing alien artifact, which may or may not have been in protagonist’s Fred’s possession. Fred is pursued by thugs, government agents, and a series of strange aliens all of whom are attempting to locate the artifact. He sometimes outwits his adversaries, but just as often bumbles into hazard after hazard. My best (and brutish) attempt to describe the story is a combination of ‘Fletch’ and ‘Men in Black.’ Who knows, maybe both were partly inspired by this work. The book is jam-packed and includes elements of crime fiction, science fiction, comedy, and even arguable fantasy. While technically not Fantasy, I doubt Zelazny would argue against a fantasy connection as the story contains a number of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ references and works hard to be chaotic and fantastical.

I enjoyed the book but find I’m not a true devotee of Zelazny. I suspect if this book didn't convert me, none will. Still, he's a talented writer with great range, demonstrating equal talents with science, philosophy, comedy, wit, and near poetic prose. However, this book had a number of elements, such as flash-forward mechanics that I found distracting. Zelanzny also occasional throws in near nonsensical sentences, that drop me out of the story. Whether these devices are intended to keep the reader off balance, or an attempt to be more complex and literary, I personally, could do without them. It’s great range of genres and an endless cast of characters made it difficult for me to stay fully engaged in the story. Still, it’s highly creative, funny, and full of plot twists. I just wish Zelazny had just fully bought into the comedic detective story set in a sci-fi universe and dropped the attempts at demonstrating literary and philosophical chops, and especially his tendency to attempt to intentionally challenge (confuse - cough, cough, looking at you - Lord of Light) the reader.

Ultimately, a fun, jam-packed story that crosses genres and styles and demonstrates the breadth of talents of an undeniable science fiction master – Roger Zelazny. ( )
  Kevin_A_Kuhn | Aug 23, 2021 |
Eh. Disliked the ending. Read for my library's SF book club. ( )
  AmyMacEvilly | Jul 11, 2021 |
"I'm going to go down there first thing in the morning and punch him in the eye!"
"Will that solve anything?"
"No, but revenge fits in with the classic life-style."

2015 is going to go down in my personal history as the year of awesome books. I am like a kid in a candy store here, running down the aisles with armfuls of treasure. I could tell you that I am giving this five stars (thinking about six) because I review things for what they are and this little beauty transcends all its genres to become something that is, while small, also quite amazing. True enough. I could tell you that I will probably five star anything that sucks me in and refuses to let me go until I have heard the whole story. Also true. Also that I will five star anything that allows a character I instantly love to follow his own tale to the end with no author tricks or lies anywhere. I do. But more than that, I am five starring this because I finished it an hour ago and I am still grinning ear to ear, still filled with the hope and beauty and humor of the thing.

The book is dedicated to Isaac Asimov, but if you are not a sci-fi fan, don't let that scare you off. I am not much a lover of sci-fi, but I loved this. It has great people sense, a tightly written story, fantastic literary references (hello again, Lewis Carroll), and truly funny humor. If it telegraphs a punch here and there, keep in mind that it was published back in 1976. (Won the Hugo back then, too.) If everybody wrote books this well, we in the postmodern world would all be kids running down the aisles with armfuls of treasure all the time. Not everybody writes this well. Not even close. Go enjoy this.

(What the heck. Six stars.)

Reviewed 7/10/15. ( )
1 vote amyotheramy | May 11, 2021 |
  mathomhaul | Apr 24, 2021 |
DNF, just didn't grab my interest enough to keep reading.
  fuzzi | Jan 31, 2021 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 18 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
The too-clever story shaping aside, there’s a lot here to like.
adicionado por Shortride | editarTor.com, Jo Walton (Aug 27, 2009)

» Adicionar outros autores (4 possíveis)

Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Roger Zelaznyautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Clarke, JohnArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Haberfield, BobArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Walotsky, RonArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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Für Isaac Asimov mit höchster Zuneigung, tiefstem Respekt und voller Verrücktheit.
To Isaac Asimov
with high regard, deep respect and full fondness
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So daliegend, die linke Hand auf einem Kissen, auf der schindelgedeckten Dachschräge, im Schatten des Giebels, hinaufstarrend zu wolkigen, blauen Meer des Nachmittagshimmels, schien ich, blinzelnd, über dem Campus und mir selbst, einen Schriftzug zu sehen.
Lying, left hand for a pillow, on the shingled slant of the roof, there in the shade of the gable, staring at the cloud-curdles in afternoon's blue pool, I seemed to see, between blinks, above the campus and myself, an instant piece of sky-writing.
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The disappearance of a star-stone model, a reproduction of an alien artifact, leads to rivalry between interstellar communities.

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