HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Complete Lythande by Marion Zimmer…
Loading...

The Complete Lythande

by Marion Zimmer Bradley

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
5027349,384 (3.43)1 / 11
  1. 00
    Thieves' World (5 Volume Boxed Set) (Theives' World, Volumes 1-5) by Robert Asprin (Rouge2507)
    Rouge2507: same common settings, other characters
  2. 00
    Lythande by Marion Zimmer Bradley (sandstone78)
    sandstone78: The Complete Lythande is the most extensive collection of Lythande stories available, but there is one more novella that wasn't included- Vonda McIntyre's "Looking for Satan," which was included in the earlier, now out of print original Lythande collection.… (more)
None
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

Showing 1-5 of 29 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
In a recent discussion in a Goodreads group about how an author's (or narrator's) bad behavior – meaning truly bad, as in child abuse and rape and murder, not simply being an utter brat online – impacts one's perception of his work, Marion Zimmer Bradley naturally came up. (If you don't know what I'm talking about – well, lucky you. Go google "MZB daughter" or something like that if you want to know (but you don't). Better yet, do a tiny bit to counteract evil and use goodsearch.com.) In the discussion, I said something about not being comfortable reading her work knowing what her pattern of behavior was. What I forgot was that back in 2013 – which I'm pretty sure was before I found out about the accusations against her – I won The Complete Lythande on LibraryThing.

I had requested the book, and was glad that I received it (though I then forget about it) because it's an old … perhaps not a friend. Acquaintance, I suppose. It's a thread in the web of my early fantasy reading, picked up – probably at Stop & Shop, which once had a really wonderful sci-fi/fantasy shelf, believe it or not – when I was in my teens. It's part of the Sanctuary mythos, the shared universe anchored by the Thieves' World series; it's also linked by the author to the Sword & Sorceress series, which introduced me to some amazing writers, including Misty Lackey. (Say what you will about her writing, Valdemar was perfectly crafted for the teenaged girl I was.) I owned a copy of The Complete Lythande, enjoyed it, and loaned it a good friend … and like 99.999 percent of the books I've ever loaned out it never came back.

So. That's why I requested it, back when, and that's why I read it despite everything. I was right – the author's back story was ever present in my mind.

Other reviewers are quite right as well: these stories should not have been collected in one volume as they are. The backbone of the series is that each mage of the Blue Star has a secret, and if that secret is discovered by another adept then follows a loss of magic and death. Oh, and adepts of the Blue Star can't eat or drink in the presence of other men. And each of these things gets at least a couple of paragraphs in every single story, with very similar wording. It doesn't take long for "YES I KNOW" syndrome sets in.

I subsequently listened to a collection of Lord John stories by Diana Gabaldon. The main character is gay. But La Gabaldon never explicitly states this, much less says it in almost the same words over and over. (I found myself making the comparison while listening to the third story in the book and waiting for something to nitpick about the character description. It never came.) I'm not saying that Diana Gabaldon is a better writer than Marion Zimmer Bradley, but … Yes, yes I am saying that.

I was thinking of complaining that every single woman in these stories (except, you know, that one) is weak, dominated, and uses sex as a weapon, an all-consuming hobby, or a career … but then I realized that every single man is a cliché as well, thuggish and brutal and as apt to rape as to breathe. It relates to the aura of the Thieves' World as a whole, but it's still … sad.

I was frankly surprised at how indifferent I was to these stories. I know that once upon a time I devoured them. This time around it took me a long time to plough my way through. ( )
  Stewartry | May 2, 2016 |
In a recent discussion in a Goodreads group about how an author's (or narrator's) bad behavior – meaning truly bad, as in child abuse and rape and murder, not simply being an utter brat online – impacts one's perception of his work, Marion Zimmer Bradley naturally came up. (If you don't know what I'm talking about – well, lucky you. Go google "MZB daughter" or something like that if you want to know (but you don't). Better yet, do a tiny bit to counteract evil and use goodsearch.com.) In the discussion, I said something about not being comfortable reading her work knowing what her pattern of behavior was. What I forgot was that back in 2013 – which I'm pretty sure was before I found out about the accusations against her – I won The Complete Lythande on LibraryThing.

I had requested the book, and was glad that I received it (though I then forget about it) because it's an old … perhaps not a friend. Acquaintance, I suppose. It's a thread in the web of my early fantasy reading, picked up – probably at Stop & Shop, which once had a really wonderful sci-fi/fantasy shelf, believe it or not – when I was in my teens. It's part of the Sanctuary mythos, the shared universe anchored by the Thieves' World series; it's also linked by the author to the Sword & Sorceress series, which introduced me to some amazing writers, including Misty Lackey. (Say what you will about her writing, Valdemar was perfectly crafted for the teenaged girl I was.) I owned a copy of The Complete Lythande, enjoyed it, and loaned it a good friend … and like 99.999 percent of the books I've ever loaned out it never came back.

So. That's why I requested it, back when, and that's why I read it despite everything. I was right – the author's back story was ever present in my mind.

Other reviewers are quite right as well: these stories should not have been collected in one volume as they are. The backbone of the series is that each mage of the Blue Star has a secret, and if that secret is discovered by another adept then follows a loss of magic and death. Oh, and adepts of the Blue Star can't eat or drink in the presence of other men. And each of these things gets at least a couple of paragraphs in every single story, with very similar wording. It doesn't take long for "YES I KNOW" syndrome sets in.

I subsequently listened to a collection of Lord John stories by Diana Gabaldon. The main character is gay. But La Gabaldon never explicitly states this, much less says it in almost the same words over and over. (I found myself making the comparison while listening to the third story in the book and waiting for something to nitpick about the character description. It never came.) I'm not saying that Diana Gabaldon is a better writer than Marion Zimmer Bradley, but … Yes, yes I am saying that.

I was thinking of complaining that every single woman in these stories (except, you know, that one) is weak, dominated, and uses sex as a weapon, an all-consuming hobby, or a career … but then I realized that every single man is a cliché as well, thuggish and brutal and as apt to rape as to breathe. It relates to the aura of the Thieves' World as a whole, but it's still … sad.

I was frankly surprised at how indifferent I was to these stories. I know that once upon a time I devoured them. This time around it took me a long time to plough my way through. ( )
1 vote Stewartry | Mar 5, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
A collection of Bradley's tales is always going to bring a certain amount of pleasure, and this collection is no different. Lythande is an interesting hero with the skills of a magician and bard. Bradley isn't afraid of using well-worn concepts, and she explores the fantasy landscape deftly. However, if you are looking for ground-breaking fantasy fiction, you won't find it here. This is a comfortable genre collection that makes it easy to while away a rainy day. ( )
  wrmjr66 | Jul 9, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
As a life long Bradley fan, it wasn't a question of whether I would enjoy this book, but whether I would reread multiple times like her Darkover and Huter Series. Sadly that was not the case and though enjoyable, being short stories which i had previously read some of, took away from the book, somewhat. ( )
  elric17 | Apr 3, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Light read. Fun feminist fiction. However, the tales are repetitive, as if each appeared in a magazine series, i.e., the conditions of Lythande's magical powers, views on other magicians, habits of dining, etc. Lost interest halfway through - not enough new was taking place. ( )
  Anraku | Feb 9, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 29 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

It's a long wait until the Final Battle between Law and Chaos, when all Adepts of the Blue Star are pledged to fight on the side of Law. So what does one do in the intervening centuries? Lythande has to earn a living, after all. Music and magic are saleable skills—sometimes both together. There's a magic lute....The allure of a mermaid's song...a temperamental music-loving dragon...magical artifacts that will allow no one to turn them from their appointed destinations...an unexpectedly dangerous small child—Lythande's life is full of challenges, of which the biggest is never allowing the Secret that preserves each Adept's power to be revealed, on pain of total loss of magic... oh, and death.… (more)

LibraryThing Early Reviewers Alum

Marion Zimmer Bradley's book The Complete Lythande was available from LibraryThing Early Reviewers.

Sign up to get a pre-publication copy in exchange for a review.

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.43)
0.5
1
1.5
2 4
2.5
3 7
3.5 4
4 10
4.5 1
5 1

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 136,367,533 books! | Top bar: Always visible