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Nightwings by Robert Silverberg
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Nightwings (1968)

by Robert Silverberg

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6941620,809 (3.62)24
Recently added byJean_Sexton, private library, szarka, amweb, Thierry1965, Serpyke, Bart_Leahy, LizzieH, ttuckerman

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» See also 24 mentions

English (15)  Italian (1)  All languages (16)
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
Reread this to see if my opinion changed on this which it did slightly. Unfortunately I still couldn't find myself interested in any of the supporting characters outside of the watcher and Roum. ( )
  capiam1234 | Jun 22, 2017 |
Interesting story but not his best. I'll read more by Silverberg. ( )
  ikeman100 | May 7, 2017 |
Beautiful. ( )
  Jon_Hansen | Mar 27, 2017 |
Have you ever noticed the weird psychological effect where, if you're reading a new edition of a work, it just doesn't "feel" old (but if you're reading an old paperback with yellowed pages and a half-naked chick on the cover, it will undoubtedly feel dated?) Well, this copy of 'Nightwings,' which was written in 1968, does, admittedly, have the unclad female (tho' such a pretty, tasteful one!), but it's all new and shiny, and I didn't feel the story seemed dated at all. Interesting.
Anyway.
Silverberg gives us, in his Hugo-award winning 'Nightwings' an Earth approximately 35,000 years in the future. Humanity has risen, and (through hubris, bad political moves, and the unfortunate effects of trying to change the planet's climate) subequently fallen.
Society is strictly governed by membership in guilds, some of which fill expected places in society... politics, mercantilism, historians, service industries... and some groups which are odder, such as the beautiful butterfly-winged fliers, created by genetic engineering in the Second Age, or the guildless Changelings, monstrous-looking outcasts, mistakes engendered by that same tinkering.
Our lead character is a Watcher, his life devoted to using a cart of instruments which allow him to monitor space for unknown alien invaders. It is barely remembered why the Watchers were set up - they seem practically useless... but little known to humanity, the invasion is nearly upon Earth...
Through three linked novellas, we follow the elderly Watcher on a journey through three ancient cities... first Roum, where he loves the lovely flier Avluela, but she loves the grotesque changeling(?) Gorman... Invaders set him on the path to Perris, along with a prince in disguise, where he becomes an historian, and later, a traitor(?)... and then to fabled Jorslem, where Pilgrims may have their bodies renewed and their sins cast aside...
At different times, the book reminded me slightly of Tanith Lee's books of Paradys, of Arthur C. Clarke's The City & The Stars, of China Mieville's New Crobuzon.... and also, of Silverberg's own 'Valentine' series... but overall, it was itself... with a beautiful dreamlike quality... very nice. ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
I really loved this story. ( )
  Vinbert | Nov 22, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Robert Silverbergprimary authorall editionscalculated
Deutsch, MichelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Malczynski, ElizabethCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Parkes, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reß-Bohusch, BirgitTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Szafran, GeneCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Roum is a city built on seven hills.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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The novella Nightwings was first published in 1968. In 1969, Silverberg pulled together three linked novellas: Nightwings (1968), Among the Rememberers (1968), and To Jorslem (1969), to form this novel. Please don't combine the novel and the novella.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0380414678, Mass Market Paperback)

A fabulous tale of pilgrimage and hope, betrayal and transformation by one of science fiction's greatest writers. Only at night on the winds of darkness can she soar. And it was Avluela the Flier's ebony and scarlet wings that lead the Watcher to the seven hills of the ancient city from which, in a moment of weakness, the Watcher failed his vigil, leaving the skies and deep space unguarded. The invaders came and conquered. With Avluela lost in the turmoil of conquest, the Watcher set out alone for the Holy City home of the Rememberers, keepers of the past. This is where the secret of Earth's salvation lay hidden in antiquity. On his journey the Watcher hoped to recapture his youth and find the soaring, beautiful woman he loved. But Avluela held more for the Watcher - and Earth - than love. Her wonder stretched beyond flight, for she knew the riddle that would free all men...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:21 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

As the Watcher is led from his vigil by Avluela the Flier, the invaders come and conquer. Now, headed for the Holy City - home of the Rememberers, keepers of the past - the Watcher hopes to recapture his youth and find the beautiful woman he loves. But Avluela holds more than love - and mankind. She knows of the riddle to free all men.… (more)

» see all 3 descriptions

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