January 27th, 2012

green leaves

Dying Earth binge

I started reading Songs of the Dying Earth (stories by other authors (mostly big names) set in Vance's Dying Earth, and liked the first few so much that I decided to Read All the Dying Earth.

I've got Tales of the Dying Earth, an omnibus with The Dying Earth, The Eyes of the Overworld, Cugel's Saga, and Rialto the Magnificent, and Shea's Incompleat Nifft (Nifft the Lean and The Mines of Behemoth), The A'rak, and A Quest for Simbilis. Am I missing anything? I'm not counting McHugh-- his work is strongly influenced by Vance, but so far as I know, not actually set on the Dying Earth.

I've started reading the Vance, and so far, his prose is better than what I'm seeing in Songs-- it's simpler and more efficient, not words you'd usually apply to Vance, but it's not very surprising that imitators are likely to overdo distinctive features. I'm especially thinking Robert Silverberg, even though his story went quite well once I got past the overworked thesaurus.

I'll probably finish up with Redemption in Indigo by Karen Lord. I've read the beginning, and liked it so much that I've been putting the book off so as not to use it up. Not the worst idea, but I wouldn't want to overdo it. In any case, the sense of humor has some overlap with Vance's-- there's delicate snark at the way characters kid themselves.

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