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High Deryni (Chronicles of the Deryni) (original 1973; edition 2007)

by Katherine Kurtz

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1,14947,104 (3.86)12
Member:fuzzi
Title:High Deryni (Chronicles of the Deryni)
Authors:Katherine Kurtz
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Collections:Read but unowned, SciFi Fantasy
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High Deryni by Katherine Kurtz (1973)

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The Deryni books are great sword and sorcery fantasy. What makes them unique is that they're a blend of historical fantasy and high fantasy. What marks a book out as high fantasy is a completely imaginary world with no links to real history--legend maybe, but the ties are tenuous, even when like Tolkien's Middle Earth, Lackey's Valdemir or Pierce's Tortall, they have a pseudo-medieval feel.

This on, the other hand, is Christian Europe--yet not quite. Gwynedd is recognizably Britain--more so than what you see usually see in high fantasy, even if there aren't any real historical parallels to the Haldane dynasty--or the Deryni for that matter, magically talented people who are persecuted by the Church. But more unusually, their "Holy Church" is quite recognizable as the Roman Catholic Church, and the church's beliefs are important to the characters, particularly Monsignor Duncan McLain, an ordained priest and newly made bishop, one of my favorite characters in the series. Which is why, unlike some reviewers, I can't see these books as anti-Christian, anti-Catholic or at all comparable to Pullman. I loved Pullman's His Dark Materials for it's style and imagination, but there's no question his quasi-Catholic Church, the Magisterium, is just plain evil, and at times Pullman's anti-church clanging anvils got to me. The thrust of the Deryni books is different. It isn't the Church or religion that's meant to be seen as evil, as characters such as Duncan prove. And in this book, two Bishops, Thomas Cardiel and Denis Arilan, are good guys as well. And I felt for Jehana, Kelson's mother, who tries to reconcile her religious convictions with her Deryni heritage. I don't think the messages of these books is anti-religion--just anti-intolerance. But I don't see these as books about a message--but good yarns. Well-plotted and with characters you care about, and this book brings the first trilogy of Deryni books to a satisfying conclusion. ( )
  LisaMaria_C | Oct 24, 2012 |
DERYNI
  rustyoldboat | May 28, 2011 |
The final book in the series wraps up the conflict that has been the theme of the first three books, and leads both to the next series, and to the Camber prequel series. It continues the excellent writing and imagery of the previous books. ( )
  Karlstar | Oct 8, 2007 |
The Church vs State fuelled war that began in the previous Deryni novel continues here, with the king out at the head of an army, trying to put down an anti-Deryni uprising.

While he does that, his advisors are looking to come to some sort of compromise with the church, diplomatically and religiously so that they can concentrate on stopping the violence.

http://notfreesf.blogspot.com/2007/03/high-deryni-katherine-kurtz.html ( )
  bluetyson | Mar 29, 2007 |
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Katherine Kurtzprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Pukallus, HorstÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sweet, Darrell K.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The name they had given the boy was Royston--Royston Richardson, after his father--and the dagger he clutched to fearfully in the deepening twilight was not his own.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345347668, Mass Market Paperback)

With young King Kelson on the throne of Gwynedd, the priesthood of the Eleven Kingdoms felt its control deeply threatened. For Kelson was half Deryni -- part of that race of humans gifted with extrasensory powers...a race that had ruled two centuries earlier, but was dethroned and driven underground.

Now, the final battle for ultimate power was about to break into open conflict, led by the Church which equated the supernatural powers of the Deryni with witchcraft and heresy!

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:46:53 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

"Young Kelson Haldane has claimed his birthright and assumed the throne of Gwynedd. For the first time in centuries, a king of Deryni heritage, possessing extraordinary magical abilities, rules the realm." "But the priesthood of the Eleven Kingdoms has held sway over the Crown for generations. They decried the Deryni as witches and heretics, drove them underground, and usurped control of the kingdom. They have no intention of ceding their power to Kelson and his supporters - even if it means inciting civil war." "Supported by the Church, an anti-Deryni leader has risen to prominence, dividing the people of the land. To end the conflict, King Kelson must face his enemies in battle - enemies willing to use the magic they so fear..."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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