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Lin Carter's Simrana Cycle by Lin Carter
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Lin Carter's Simrana Cycle (edition 2018)

by Lin Carter (Author), Robert M Price (Editor), Robert M Price (Author), Stephen Hickman (Cover artist), Glynn Owen Barrass (Author)8 more, Darrell Schweitzer (Author), Adrian Cole (Author), Charles Garofalo (Author), Lord Dunsany (Author), Henry Kuttner (Author), Robert M Price (Outroduction), Gary Myers (Author), Roy G. Krenkel (Illustrator)

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Member:Dr_Bob
Title:Lin Carter's Simrana Cycle
Authors:Lin Carter (Author)
Other authors:Robert M Price (Editor), Robert M Price (Author), Stephen Hickman (Cover artist), Glynn Owen Barrass (Author), Darrell Schweitzer (Author)7 more, Adrian Cole (Author), Charles Garofalo (Author), Lord Dunsany (Author), Henry Kuttner (Author), Robert M Price (Outroduction), Gary Myers (Author), Roy G. Krenkel (Illustrator)
Info:Celaeno Press (2018), 252 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:Dreamlands, Lord Dunsany

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Lin Carter's Simrana Cycle by Lin Carter

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I possess a love of wonder stories - stories that evoke that silent tremble of awe.

Lord Dunsany is the master maker of such tales set in lands "over the hills and far away...beyond the fields we know," in lands that are dream. Like the British romance poets of the 19th century (Wordsworth, Keats, Shelley), Dunsany's tales evoke a hollowing nostalgia for nature, magic, romance, youth, and innocence -- and does so poignantly for those of us who read Dunsany when we were young and, now again, when we are old.

I have found few of the works I read when I was young retain their power if wonder upon rereading today. For me, much of Dunsany still does.

Dunsany's tales, at times, also possess a medicinal teaspoon of cautionary wisdom in depicting what befalls the greedy, the arrogant, the prideful, the selfish and the unthinking.

Many authors have been inspired by Dunsany to write tales set in the lands of Dream, some seeking to also emulate Dunsany's rhapsodic prose while others seek to transpose hus instillment of wonder via a prosady of their own. H.P. Lovecraft, Gary Myers, and Lin Carter are of those who wrought the former, while Clark Ashton Smith, Tolkien, Jack Vance, Joy Chant, and many fantasy authors of the sixties and seventies styled the latter.

In this book, all of Carter's Simrana dreamland stories are collected. Two unfinished tales have been completed by friends, new tales in homage to Carter by other authors extend the dream, and a selection from Dunsany's own work completes the volume (along with one story by Henry Kuttner) that the editor has identified as likely being the most influential upon Carter's dreamworld.

Lin Carter's opening tale, "The Gods of Niam Parma" is his best. It is a polished revision of his "The Gods of Neol-Shendis." The latter, also present, contains marvelous illustrations by Roy Krenkel that are, delightfully, also included in this volume.

Darrell Schweitzer's "The Philosopher Thief" best conjures up the spirit of Dunsanian wonder, while Gary Myer's "The Sorceror's Satchel" carries a shtickle of Dunsanian whimsy. The delightful stories by Charles Garofolo and those by Adrian Cole, some of his best work, while set in Carter's Simrana, channel in their touches of humor and farce more of Jack Vance's "The Dying Earth" (which I also love) than Dunsany -- at least in my humble opinion.

The stories by Lord Dunsany demonstrate, in their power, why they were so influential on so many. Of these, "The Sword of Welleran" and "Carcassonne" are exceptional and should be read by every student -- and lover -- of the classic fantasy genre. ( )
  Dr_Bob | Mar 26, 2020 |
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