the Little Red Reviewer

Archive for the ‘Michael Moorcock’ Category

Epic: Legends of Fantasy, edited by John Joseph Adams

published November 2012

where I got it: Received ARC from the publisher

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Epic Fantasy requires the story to be bigger, the dragons be faster, the warriors be stronger, and everything generally be more. And Epic: Legends of Fantasy offers up just that – more mythos,  higher stakes, more of simply everything.

Many of the entries are part of the author’s larger work, taking place in an epic fantasy world that the author has already written hundreds and sometimes thousands of pages about. Randomly, the stories I read first happened to be part of larger works, and at first, the lack of stand alone works bothered me, but I quickly came to appreciate it, and to learn the collection had plenty of stand alone stories as well. An anthology like this is a brilliant method of introducing readers to these larger fantasy worlds created by famous authors such as Robin Hobb, George R R Martin, Michael Moorcock, Melanie Rawn, Tad Williams, and many others, and serves as an excellent introduction to the writings of newer authors  as well.

Some works were fairly new, but others were older than I am. the Moorcock for example was originally written in 1961. A pure classic sword and sorcery, complete with sexualized and helpless female, it might be offensive to today’s readers, but I’m happy Adams included it, as what’s the point of talking about Epic Fantasy if we’re not going to touch on the journey the genre has taken?

Clocking in at over 600 pages, Epic: Legends of Fantasy is itself a bit of a doorstopper.  We eat clunksters like this for breakfast, so I was surprised at how long it took me to plow through it. ahh, but spending 600+ pages in one fantasy world is one thing. Try spending that quantity of pages in over a dozen fantasy worlds. More often than not, my brain needed a little break in between.   This isn’t the kind of anthology to gorge on, this is the kind you savor, over many winter evenings.

Here’s my thoughts a handful of the entries:

Read the rest of this entry »

Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles, by Michael Moorcock

published in 2010

where I got it: the library

why I read it:  Michael Moorcock does Doctor Who? Sign me up!!! Also, I am an epic nerd

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Who would have thought the Doctor is a card carrying, membership paying, re-enactment loving member of the Terraphiles, a group obsessed with old old old original Earth goings on? Imagine a Disneyland version of a renaissance festival, on a planet sized scale, complete with costumed characters, archery contests, themed taverns, jousting, and all manner of mixed up sports that have gotten lost in translation over fifty thousand years.  Thus, The Doctor and Amy find themselves on the terraformed planet of Peers(tm), spectators and then participants at a semi-finals sporting event.  Cheering for the hometeam, the Gentlemen, all are hoping to attend the intergalactic finals, The Grand Tourney,  on the Ghost Planet of Flynn in the Miggea system. The winning team will be awarded the Arrow of Artemis.

Living a comedy of errors and mixed metaphors, the Terraphiles are thrilled to meet Amy, an “expert in 20th century old old Earth”, although she has some trouble figuring out what they’re on about, with their strange notions of archery, swordplay, competitive nut-cracking (no, not that), and something that might be a total bastardisation  of cricket.  While she’s laughing her head off, the captain of The Gentlemen, Robin of Locksley (known as Bingo) decides she’s the most beautiful woman he’s ever met, and mystery rears it’s head when Mrs Banning-Cannon’s most hideous hat (so hideous it causes her husband to have arachnophobic fits) goes missing. And is then found, but still missing a piece.

According to Mrs Banning-Cannon, it’s the end of the world if her stolen hat (a Diana of Loondoon original!) isn’t found.  According to The Doctor’s calculations,  it could be the end of the universe, and the multiverse, as we know it. Read the rest of this entry »


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some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.