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The Last Defender of Camelot Paperback – 20 May 2002

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: ibooks Inc; New edition edition (20 May 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743435109
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743435109
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 2.8 x 21.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,885,273 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Roger Zelazny was a three-time Nebula Award and six-time Hugo Award-winning author of science fiction and fantasy classics, including the short stories "24 Views of Mount Fuji, by Hokusai," "Permafrost," and "Home is the Hangman." Zelazny was the bestselling author of the ten-volume Chronicles of Amber series of fantasy novels, as well as the novels Lord of Light, and Psychoshop (written with Alfred Bester). Zelazny's novel Damnation Alley served as the basis for the 1972 cult film of the same name, starring Jan Michael Vincent and George Peppard.

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It was into the second year now, and it was maddening. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 2 Mar. 2002
Format: Paperback
The first thing to be noted about this book is that it is *not* a reprint of the 1980 collection released under the same name, which featured Zelazny's own selection and commentary of his favourite uncollected stories. This is a new anthology of his best work, chosen by friend and fellow-SF author Robert Silverberg, and featuring a substantially different lineup from the previous volume.
This said, although only one of the stories here ("Come Back to the Killing Ground, Alice, My Love") has not been published in previous collections, this piece is possibly one of Zelazny's best stories ever, which alone would make this book a worthwhile buy. The Last Defender of Camelot showcases some of Zelazny's best short story writing from throughout his career, and Silverberg's comments and introduction are an insightful and thought-provoking reminder of what was lost when Zelazny died in 1995.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ShinsFortress on 12 July 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I decided to drop a star because this collection isn't perfect. Which is not surprising, because collections featuring different styles can't please all the people all the time.

Personally, I thought the famous and much lauded "Come Back to the Killing Ground, Alice my Love" while good, was an excessively hyped (rarely, if ever, a good thing) showcase of style over content. Ditto for "24 Views of Mt Fuji, by Hokusai". And "Halfjack" was bad. Not because of it's brevity, but I found the underlying premise distasteful.

The rest are all fair to excellent stories. Though for me, "For a Breath I Tarry" is his piece de resitance; a work of genius I could never expect to match. Enjoy.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 32 reviews
55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
A hacked version of the classic anthology 25 Jun. 2002
By H. Smith - Published on
Format: Paperback
As a huge fan of the author and the original release of this brilliant short story collection, I am extremely disappointed in the new release. HUNT DOWN THE ORIGINAL. The new version omits all of Zelazny's forewords and, more damning, it actually omits some of the better stories found in the original collection. Silverburg mentions "Horsemen!" in the introduction, then the story is strangely absent. This is a travesty.
27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Bad editing: avoid Ebook like the plague. 13 April 2014
By Paul Ryan - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
NB: This review refers to the Kindle version published by ibooks in March '14.

Yes, the stories are great - or they would be if they were complete. One story has the end entirely missing, and I've spotted a couple of other places where things seem to be missing just browsing through. Until and unless someone does some serious fixing, don't waste your money on the Kindle version of this book. I just wish I'd read the other review warning about this problem before purchase.
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Review of Kindle version -- editing issues 31 Mar. 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Zelazny was one of the truly great SF talents from the last half of the 20th century and this collection brings together some excellent short material.

Unfortunately, I can’t at this time (31 March 2014) recommend buying the Kindle version of this book. After doing no more than skimming a few stories, I noticed that the end of one (“For a Breath I Tarry”) was truncated (probably missing the last few paragraphs) and part of the first sentence was missing from the very next one (“Engine at Heartspring’s Center”). I notified Amazon of the defect, but it makes me wonder just how many other such errors are scattered throughout the text.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
A good new selection with an old title 17 Nov. 2003
By L. Stearns Newburg - Published on
Format: Paperback
This new collection of Zelazny stories, selected by Robert Silverberg, is a good one. It contains 3 of his stronger stories from earlier collections made by Zelazny himself: "For A Breath I Tarry," "The Last Defender of Camelot," and "24 Views of Mt. Fuji."

The book also contains several other worthy stories to create a collection that spans Zelazny's career. I suspect length issues caused the selection to be limited to only 11 stories. Still, as a long-time reader of Zelazny's work since the '60s, I think he would have been better represented if I Books could have made the collection bigger. New readers of Zelazny can't easily get a feeling for the magnitude of his accomplishments with such a small selection.

The absence of "He Who Shapes" and "Damnation Alley," for instance, is to be regretted. Still, the collection is good overall. New readers who wish to read more of Zelazny's work will simply need to scour 2nd hand bookstores.

Another, somewhat irksome problem is that the collection name, _The Last Defender of Camelot_, matches that of a collection that Zelazny published himself back in 1980. That collection was probably one of his 2 or 3 best, and it was also quite large. Giving this collection the same name seems an ill-considered choice, and it will result in some confusion that should have been avoided. Most regrettable, but oh, well. At least these stories are available again, and that is a plus.

Addendum 2011: The NESFA editions of the complete stories of Zelazny now satisfy the needs of people who want to read everything in the order that it was written in. Collections like this one are still useful for introducing readers to Zelazny's work.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Sad Re-collection 18 April 2014
By AllanL5 - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This used to be one of my favorite SF collections. Beautiful stories, very moving. Sadly, the Kindle version of "For A Breath I Tarry" is missing the last page of that story, and the first page of the next story. Extremely frustrating experience, to come to the resolution of a lovely story, and then have the last words missing. Here's a clue -- it doesn't end with "He laughed.". Don't people apply Quality Assurance to this sort of thing?
I sincerely hope this will be fixed, and fixed soon. I resent paying $7 for a Kindle edition which is incomplete, when for $1 or less I could have bought an old paperback having everything I remembered.
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