The Big Book of Amber, Zelazny

OK, so it’s the ??Great Book of Amber?? rather than ??The Big Book of Amber??, but it certainly big, and there’s some reference to my childhood that I can’t quite apprehend but nevertheless makes it stick (Note: the options you get “on Barnes & Noble”: are wierd and fascinating).

I’ve never read any Zelazny before, and it’s distinctly wierd for me; as I’m sure Unix old-timers would cringe to hear me admit that I know Perl infinitely better than sh and awk (I barely know awk at all), I’m sure many SF fans will look askance when I admit that I recognize the writing well–it reminds me of Steven Brust.

Now I’m not saying this is an original observation in any way–I think I probably picked it up from Steven himself on GEnie many years ago.

What strikes me, though, is the extent to which I think the student may have surpassed the teacher. Steven’s prose seems much more consistent and polished–Zelazny seems to have no problem with going from a formal feeling “fantasy prose” to something much more “20th century conversational” in the space of about three sentences, and I have to say, it drives me a little bit nuts.

Not so nuts that I’m not going to continue or anything–when was the last time I dropped a book entirely? Oh, wait, last week, just before I started this one…


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Michael Alan Dorman

Yogi, brigand, programmer, thief, musician, Republican, cook. I leave it to you figure out which ones are accurate.