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SCORE, I think


Bill_Adcock
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At the library there are a couple racks of book donations they've received that they have no room for, and so are for sale. I browse them almost daily, to see if anything desirable is in. 99% of the time I walk away disappointed, either because there's nothing I want or I don't have any money on me.

 

Today I'm browsing and I recognize the name Karl Edward Wagner from his editing some of my older Conan volumes. The book's "Bloodstone" and features the red-haired barbarian Kane. Looks interesting. I bought it and intend to start it tonight.

 

I hope it lives up to my expectations. I paid a whole dollar for it.

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From my understanding of the character, Kane is pretty dark, an anti-hero really. I have never read any because their is supposed to be a bit of technology thrown in, and that always ruins an heroic fantasy story for me. But the people who like Kane seem to be as fanatical as those that like Conan, so hopefully it will be worth your while.

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I'm 70 pages into it so far, and it's not too bad. Yeah, Kane is very dark, something of a scholar of eldritch stuff, and there is technology, though it's Lovecraft-technology. All brought down from the stars when the earth was young, that sorta thing. I'm not sure I like how everyone knows about these Elder Races and how lightly they accept the fact of their existence. Wagner even includes a variation of Deep Ones, called the Rillyti, degenerate descendants of a once-powerful alien race called the Krelran (vaguely reminiscient of the degenerate flying ape from Queen of the Black Coast) who are described as 'batrachian' and 'bufanoid.' I'll finish it and give you my full impression of it then.

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I have one Kane novel("Dark Crusade") and one book of short stories("Night Winds"). They are both very good. The SciFi Book Club has collected editions of all the Kane stories and novels available. Guess it's time to re-join. :B):

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Finished the book this afternoon post-exam. It was...ehhhhhhhh. Kane makes Conan look like the poster child for Prozac success. For all his "gigantic melancholies," Kane is even more doom and gloom. The mishmash of magic and superscience didn't appeal to me, and the words in some characters' mouths were out of period. In the feudal period, which this roughly is equivalent to, I doubt people used phrases like "shove it". And it was more nihilistically Lovecraftian than S&S is generally allowed to be. Conan didn't know about Cthulhu and Yog-Sothoth; why does everyone know about the Karl Edward Wagner's Elder Gods?

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If you're at all interested in giving it a look, I'd be happy to send it your way.

Thanks for the offer, Bill, but I plan on getting the Kane collections from the Scifi Book Club.

Even if you didn't like the story, at least the Frazetta cover is cool. :B):

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I've been reading the Kane books again this year. Stumbled on them in a used book store. Back in the 70's I tried them out (Dark Crusade to be exact) and my favorite is the short story"Reflections for the Winter of My Soul" which features a werecreature.

 

Anyway, the complete series moves from here to there and even has stories in our present day. Kane is a monster, worse in his way than Dracula. He is a negative character and might be the best example of an antipaladin in fantasy literature. I believe that is where my interest has been, how would an evil character play. Or better yet...would an immortal have the same morals as a mortal?

 

The influences of HPL and REH can be seen in the Eldritch Sorcery/Science of the Elder Races. Sometimes magical and sometimes scientific but always horrifying these tales are flawed gems in that the style can be interrupted by "inappropriate use of language". The example used before fits here.

I doubt people used phrases like "shove it"

The perspective is so different from most heroic fantasy. There are other stories that are driven by antiheroes. Elric, and Thomas Covenant. And there are bad guys galore but I can't think of any other novelist that had such a negative character. As such, he is not to the taste of many readers of fantasy.

 

Here is a site that gives some more depth to the character:

Kane

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