Picaresque adventure-comedy and scathing wit in the inimitable Vance manner: a fantasy sequel to The Eyes of the Overworld (1966)--which itself shared the setting of The Dying Earth (1950). Cugel the Clever has again been dumped half a world away from home by the vindictive Iucounu the Laughing Magician. To gain revenge, Cugel must travel through a far-future world lit by a guttering old red sun: this bleak, antique landscape is populated by weird creatures and an array of larger-than-life human eccentrics, rogues, fanatics, and tricksters--among whom the charming, rascally Cugel is perfectly at home. Frequently hilarious, often self-induced difficulties ensue: Cugel is obliged to dive in a pond of slime for the talisman Scatterlight; he acquires a magical boot-ointment that confers weightlessness on objects kicked with the boots; he floats across a wasteland in a stolen ship occupied by a monster; and finally, aided by a trainer of singing fish whose four wizardly fathers have one set of human body-parts among them, Cugel confronts the madly rapacious Iucounu in his manse. Though somewhat more expansive and languid than the earlier classic, as if part of Vance's attention remains in Lyonesse (p. 213): a sparkling performance that no fantasy fan will want to miss.
Pub Date: Nov. 11, 1983
Page Count: -
Publisher: Timescape/Pocket Books--dist. by Simon & Schuster