[ Read Online Shadow & Claw ä hip-hop PDF ] by Gene Wolfe ☆ The book s cover offers a blurb from Neil Gaiman The best SF novel of the last century Yeah, okay Neil, I thought to myself I bet you say that to all the pretty books.
Then I read the book And he was right At least, right if you define best as none better rather than better than all Book of the New Sun belongs in a class of its own If there s anything to compare it with, I haven t read it.
With this quartet, Gene Wolfe did for speculative literature what Raymond Chandler did to detective fiction back in the 50s He raised it above its humble genre trappings Chandler opened my eyes to a new type of writing Prior to cracking open the pages of The Long Goodbye, I perceived literature as a dichotomy entertaining genre trash and high falutin Literary tomes The former focuses on the what while the latter focuses on the how but both possess merit Chandler s ficti Gene Wolfe is not a misgynist Before all the sensitive types start in on Gene Wolfe s treatment of women in Shadow and Claw, I thought I would head off such criticisms by exploring women s freedom in Wolfe s Urth.
On Urth, women are 1 Permitted to learn to read There are actually a number of women in the narrative that not only can read but also can read and understand something akin to Latin But, don t you dare call it Latin, because it s not Gene Wolfe said so.
2 Free to wear clothes or not as they see fit Much care is taken that women should be offered to wear clothes and even clean clothes when their pathetic nature raises our empathy and pity Yet, a woman is also apparently free to disrobe and thrown herself naked and pleading to exchange sex for the life of a loved one.
3 Free to sell her body for money legally Money The Shadow of the Torturer Apprentice torturer Severian shows mercy for an imprisoned woman and helps her commit suicide rather than endure weeks of torture For his crimes, Severian is sentenced to travel too the village of Thrax and take up the post of carnifex Will Severian make it to Thrax alive The Shadow of the Torturer isn t your grandmother s fantasy The tale of Severian isn t the hopeful quest story that s been written and re written umpteen times in the past fifty years The setting reminds me of Jack Vance s Dying Earth but muchdeveloped and with the specter of space opera hanging in the background Gene Wolfe takes the bare bones of the standard quest story and clothes it with literary merit, from the unreliable narrator, Severian, to references to classic works The scene in the necropolis near the beginning is straight out of Great Fantastic ConjunctivitisWolfe is most often compared to Tolkien and Lewis However this is regurgitation of marketing hype There is little in terms of style or symbology to link Wolfe with either Aside from the genre of fantasy and a clear talent for creative world building, Wolfe dwells in a very different universe, a universe not all that dissimilar from Mervyn Peake s Gormenghast trilogy The physical environment of Wolfe s city of Nessus could easily fit into Peake s Gormenghast Castle and vice versa A vast, half ruined, place, unknown except locally to its inhabitants A gothic labyrinth that harbours all manner of surprises and threats.
Both sets of works play off a background of ancient but incomprehensible tradition that establishes the rigid condit update 12 2 2015 On this, my first re reading, I m stopping with Shadow of the Torturer in a for now kind of moment There are some other things I d like to read as 2015 winds down Not sure if I enjoyed the storyor about the same this time around Certainly not less original review My first pass through Gene Wolfe s Shadow of the Torturer Claw of the Conciliator was summed up with a status update I made about two thirds of the way through Flashes of brilliance between swaths of tedium.
I did not dislike the book, and I expect to re read it and enjoy it evensome day but it did not strike me thus Not on this first reading.
Aerin said it well Reading these books is like trying to watch a foreign movie without subtitles from two mi
My three favorite novels in the world are Dune by Frank Herbert, The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco, and The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe I bet that many of you have read, and manyhave heard of, the first two, but I wonder how many have read the last The Book of the New Sun is less accessible than The Name of the Rose and weirder than Dune The mind bending future world, where the sun is so close to dead that you can see the stars in the daytime, is on par with Dune in its richness and complexity The mostly religious philosophy, which the characters often discuss in casual conversation without it seeming contrived, is on par with The Name of the Rose or better But the characterization is better than either Although the main character is male, the female characters are farreal, vivid, and varied than almost anything I ve encountered in fiction, I stopped after MUST read at first available opportunity, b c Servo is an ode to one of Pierce Brown s favorite characters in literature,