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Gary Jennings (1928–1999)

Author of Aztec

50+ Works 4,855 Members 102 Reviews 20 Favorited

About the Author

Born in Buena Vista, Va., Gary Jennings worked as an account executive in advertising and as managing editor of Dude and Gent magazines before becoming a full time writer. His early works were written for young adults, but he has since become well known as a writer of extensively researched, epic show more historical fiction. Jennings immerses himself in the culture of the period and locale to gain the background for his novels. Before writing Aztec (1980), Jennings lived in Mexico for 12 years and studied the Nahuatl language. The popularity of this novel resulted in the sequel, Aztec Autumn (1997). To give depth and flavor to his novel, The Journeyer (1984), Jennings followed a route to China, sometimes traveling by camel or elephant, in the manner of Marco Polo. (Bowker Author Biography) show less


Works by Gary Jennings

Aztec (1980) 1,776 copies
The Journeyer (1984) 721 copies
Aztec Autumn (1997) 626 copies
Raptor (1992) 429 copies
Aztec Blood (2001) 320 copies
Spangle (1987) 187 copies
Aztec Rage (2006) 169 copies
Aztec Fire (2008) 67 copies
The Center Ring: Spangle #2 (1999) 55 copies
The Road Show: Spangle #1 (1999) 53 copies
Aztec Revenge (2013) 33 copies
The 2012 Codex (Aztec) (2010) 32 copies
Black Magic, White Magic (1940) 18 copies
Personalities of language (1965) 16 copies
Sow the Seeds of Hemp (1976) 13 copies
The Terrible Teague Bunch (1980) 5 copies
The rope in the jungle (1976) 5 copies
Terrible Teague Bunch (1975) 5 copies
March of the Demons (1977) 3 copies
March of the Gods (1976) 3 copies
The Shrinking Outdoors. (1972) 2 copies
The Movie Book (1963) 2 copies
Astek 1 copy
The earth book (1974) 1 copy
Golden Eagle 1 copy
L'Azteco vol 2 (1984) 1 copy
Tom Cat 1 copy

Associated Works

Magicats! (1939) — Contributor — 214 copies
The Mammoth Book of New Comic Fantasy (2005) — Contributor — 178 copies
The Best from Fantasy and Science Fiction: 15th Series (1966) — Contributor, some editions — 77 copies
The Best from Fantasy and Science Fiction: 20th Series (1973) — Contributor — 55 copies
National Geographic Magazine 1974 v145 #1 January (1974) — Contributor — 20 copies
KatSF (1993) — Author — 18 copies
National Geographic Magazine 1974 v145 #3 March (1974) — Contributor — 17 copies


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Common Knowledge




I completed 30% of the book and at least 50% of that has to do with sexual exploits...on and on ad nauseam. Sex wasn't just mentioned briefly, but entire chapters of explicit detail. Sigh.....I read 240 pages and I'm done! DNF
Tess_W | 14 other reviews | Mar 17, 2023 |
A fabulous, incredible work of research and art, which may make you hate Spaniards, if you don't already, for the audacity to take and destroy a civilization and its people that was superior in every way to their own. Most of the book is narrated by an Aztec who self-taught himself many of the languages used throughout his country, besides learning Spanish. His character taught the Spaniards the history of the empire as it stood before they destroyed it, and he was"rewarded" when he finished his narration in the most cruel way. Here are a few quotes:
"oh, yes, your Excellency, I know that hell is only for the multitude of wicked men who deserve eternal torment, and that a select few righteous men go to a sublime Glory called heaven. But your missionaries preach that, even for Christians, the felicitous heaven is narrow place, hard to get to, while the terrible hell is capacious and easily entered. I have attended many Church and mission services since the one that converted me, and I have come to think that Christianity would be more attractive to the heathen if your excellency's priests were able to describe the delights of heaven as vividly and gloatingly as they dwell upon the horrors of hell.

Ahuítzotl's eldest recognized son Cuauhtémoc led, on a Golden chain, the small dog that would accompany the dead man on his journey to the afterworld.

from your expressions, Reverend scribes, I take it that you do not comprehend the meaning of the ueyquin ayquic, "the age of never." no, no, my lords, it does not signify an age of any specific number of years. It comes early to some people, later to others. Considering that I was then 40 and 5 years old, well into my middle years, I had eluded its clutch for longer than most men. The ueyquin ayquic is the age when a man begins to mutter to himself, "ayya, the hills never seemed so steep before..." or "ayya, my back never used to give me these twinges of pain..." or "ayya, I never found a gray hair in my head before now..."
that is the age of never.

my four companions look bothered and indignant, but they said nothing. So I cleared my throat, and spoke directly to Cortes, and in his own language: "I have one question, my Lord."
the white men all look surprised at being addressed in Spanish, and Ce - malinali stiffened, no doubt fearing that I was about to denounce her -- or perhaps apply to take her place as interpreter.
"I am curious to know..." I began, pretending humility and uncertainty. "could you tell me...?"
"yes?" prompted Cortes.
Still seeming shy and hesitant, I said, "I have heard your men - so many of your men - speak of our women as, well, incomplete in a certain respect..."
there was a clanking of metal and a squeaking of leather as all the white men bent closer their attention to me. "yes? Yes?"
I asked as if I really wanted to know, and asked politely, solemnly, with no hint of scurrility or mockery, "do your women... Does your Virgin Mary have hair covering her private parts?"

when runners came back from each of the detachments to report that they were in position and making camp to stay on call as long as necessary, Cortes told Tlácotzin, and the snake woman sent the word to Motecuzóma: the emissaries of King Carlos and the Lord God would enter Tenochtítlan the next day.
that was the day Two House in our year of One Reed, which is to say, early in your month of November, and your year counted as 1519.

it is a pity, Reverend scribes, that your church is thereby enjoined from employing more merciful methods of execution. For I have seen many kinds of killing and dying in my time, but none more hideous, I think, than what Cuaupopóca and his officers suffered that day.
They bore it staunchly for a while, as the flames first licked up along their legs. Above the heavy iron collars of the chain links, their faces were calm and resigned. They were not otherwise bound to the post, but they did not kick their legs or flail their arms or struggle in any unseemly manner. However, when the flames reached their groins and burned away their loincloths and began to burn what was underneath, their faces became agonized. Then the fire needed no longer to be fed by the wood and chapopótli; it caught the natural oils of their skin and the fatty tissue just under the skin. The men, instead of being burned, began to burn of themselves, and the flames Rose so high that we could barely see their faces. But we saw the brighter flash of their hair going in one blaze, and we could hear the men begin to scream.
after a while, the scream faded to a thin, high shrilling, just audible above the crackling of the flames, and more unpleasant to hear than the screaming had been. When we onlookers got a glimpse of the men inside the blaze, they were black and crinkled all over, but somewhere inside that char they still lived and one or more of them kept up that inhuman Keening. The flames eventually ate under their skin and flesh, to gnaw on their muscles, and that made the muscles tighten in odd ways, so that the men's bodies began to contort. Their arms bent at the elbows; their hands of fused fingers came up before their faces, or where their faces had been. What was left of their legs slowly bent at the knees and hips; they lifted off the ground and bunched up against the men's bellies.
As they hung their and fried, they also shrank, until they ceased to resemble men, in size as well as appearance. Only their crusted and featureless heads were still of adult size. Otherwise they looked like five children, charred black, tucked into the position in which young children so often sleep. And still, though it was hard to believe that life still existed inside those pitiful objects, that shrill noise went on. It went on until their heads burst. Wood soaked in chapopótli gives a hot fire, and such heat must make the brain boil and Froth, and steam until the skull can no longer contain it. There was a sudden noise like a clay pot shattering, and it sounded four times more, and then there was no noise except the sizzle of some last droplets from the bodies falling into the fire, and the soft crunch of the wood relaxing into a bed of embers.

it is said that Cortes did just that. He sat, as if he would never rise again. He sat with his back against one of the "oldest of old" cypress trees, and he wept. Whether he wept more for his crushing defeat for the Lost treasure, I do not know. But a fence has recently been put around that tree where Cortes wept, to mark it as a memorial of "the sad night." we Mexíca, if we were still keeping histories, might have given a different name to that occasion - the night of the last victory of the Mexíca, perhaps - but it is you Spaniards who write the histories now, so I suppose that rainy and bloody night, by your calendar the 30th day of the month of June in the year 1520, will forever be remembered as "La Noche triste."

The disease of the smallpox was the conqueror of us Mexíca and if some other peoples. Still other nations were defeated or are still being devastated by other diseases never known in these lands before, some of which might make us Mexíca feel almost thankful to have been visited only with the smallpox.
There is the sickness you call the plague, in which the victim develops agonizing black bulges in his neck and groin and armpits so that he keeps continually stretching his head backward and his extremities outward, as if he would gladly break them from his body to be rid of the pain. Meanwhile, his every bodily emanation -- his spittle, his urine and excrement, even his sweat and his breath -- are of such vile stench that neither hardened physicians Nor tender kinsmen can bear to stay near the victim, until at last the bulges burst with a gush of nauseous black fluid, and the sufferer is mercifully dead.
There is the sickness you call the Cholera, whose victims are seized by cramps in every muscle of the body, randomly or all at once. A man will at one moment have his arms or legs wrenched into contortions of anguish, then be splayed out as if he were flinging himself apart, then have his whole body convulsed into a knot of torture. All the time, he is also tormented by an unquenchable thirst. Although he gulps down Torrants of water, he continuously retches it out, and uncontrollably urinates and defecates. Since he cannot contain any moisture, he dries and shrivels so that, when at last he dies, he looks like an old seed pod.
There are the other diseases you call the measles and the pease pocks, which kills less horrifically but just as certainly. The only visible symptom is an itchy rash on the face and torso, but invisibly the sicknesses invade the brain, so the victim subsides first into unconsciousness and then into death.
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burritapal | 11 other reviews | Oct 23, 2022 |
Quinto e último livro da saga sobre a civilização asteca, Vingança asteca é um romance de ritmo intenso e apaixonante. Mais uma vez, Gary Jennings convida o leitor a se solidarizar com um povo que teve suas terras tomadas e seu moral destruído pelo reino mais poderoso do mundo: a Espanha, que submeteu por meio da força o poderoso Império Asteca e praticamente eliminou sua civilização da face da Terra.
bibliotecapresmil | Sep 6, 2022 |
La verdad es que para tener 1100 páginas no se hace para nada pesado. Sorprendente, increible historia... Super recomendable la verdad. Los personajes y sus historias me encantaron todos, el protagonista Mixtli, Glotón de Sangre, Chimali, muñeca de Jade, Cózcatl, Cuauhpopoca, Cortés ... Podría seguir y seguir. Algunos momentos muy tristes Nochipa... En general me encantó
jordisolisc | 42 other reviews | Aug 7, 2022 |



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