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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best!
Philip Pullman's Amber Knife, Moore's From Hell, Talbot's Luther Arkwright, Mieville's Perdido Street Station, Morrison's Invisibles -- you name them, they all recognise Moorcock as the originator of what is sometimes called 'steam punk' but which I call 'alternate urban adventure' since they tend to focus on the darker aspects of City Life. But what Moorcock also...
Published on 30 Jan. 2002

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't start here....
I first read this series when i was 17 after hearing all about Michael Moorcock from various friends and magazines. Sadly, it put me off the author for a good few years and coming back to it i see why.

The story its self is generally a great read. The whole 'victorian futures/steampunk' genre is superb and drew me in right from the start. The stories also zip...
Published on 28 Oct. 2008 by Harl E Quinn


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best!, 30 Jan. 2002
By A Customer
Philip Pullman's Amber Knife, Moore's From Hell, Talbot's Luther Arkwright, Mieville's Perdido Street Station, Morrison's Invisibles -- you name them, they all recognise Moorcock as the originator of what is sometimes called 'steam punk' but which I call 'alternate urban adventure' since they tend to focus on the darker aspects of City Life. But what Moorcock also shares with these authors is his constant, unwavering suspicion of authority. Before this there were no steam-driven airships and the like,
no alternative futures, no examination of the underbelly of government, no dark, alternate Londons. This looks at three imperial dreams -- the British, the American and the Russian -- and shows in the first -- and by far the best -- Warlord of the Air how those empires are maintained by injustice, brutality and hypocrisy. Moorcock has not just given us a lot of good, original stories -- he has given many different authors who followed him a range of different methods. This is one method (the future as seen from the past) but Jerry Cornelius is another, Dancers at the End of Time are another and, of course, he changed the whole face of fantasy fiction with Elric and Co -- and that's without mentioning the literary fiction, the Pyat books, Mother London and all the non-fiction. In the 60s and early 70s Moorcock anticipated Black Holes and the Multiverse, both ideas once considered too outrageous by science, now highly respectable ideas debated in NATURE and NEW SCIENTIST. His scientific vision alone ranks him beside Wells and Clarke and his words have entered the language in the same way.
Oswald Bastable is a decent, idealistic young Army officer on the North West Frontier, circa 1900.
After some Haggard-like funny business in an old Temple, he awakes to find himself in the future --
a future he has anticipated in his own self-sacrifice -- i.e. a perfect Pax Britannica maintained by the mighty airships of a benign Britain. Why on earth would 'terrorists' wish to attack this perfect system ? No doubt from jealousy ? And why would Joseph Conrad (here
Korzeniowski the airship captain) support such
people ? This is also a very early example, if not the first, of post-modernist 'intervention' in genre. As well as playing games with Lord Jim and his creator, Moorcock takes Kipling's With The Night Mail and turns it on his head. Kipling supported his elite republican heroes against 'the mob'. As ever, Moorcock's heart is decidedly on the side of 'the mob' and that, again, is what makes this science fiction in the honourable tradition of Wells, London, Huxley and Orwell -- and just as influential on both literary and popular culture. The first novel is still the best. The others are excellent riffs on the main tune and worth reading. It still has the excitement of a new form being discovered and tried which gives it a special authority, makes it a particular joy.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A ground breaking pice of work!, 30 Jun. 2001
The first of these stories, "Warlord of the Air" can be taken in two ways; either as a brilliant and imaginative stand-alone work in the steampunk sci-fi genre (one of the first of its kind), or as part of the Eternal Champion Saga for which Moorcock is famous. Steampunk concerns iself with alternate futures where technology has taken distinctly differnet routes (usually steam power), and this novel plays it out in a wonderfully real way, blowing your mind with its great airships, and charmingly British feel to it!
The second story, "The Land Leviathan", is not bad in many respects, is shows Bastable's moral evolution, though it just seems to lack the finesse of the first, and is clearly not as well thought out. It does however begin to show Bastable's role as the Eternal Champion towards the end.
The third story is an all out sequel to the first book, and is undoubtably an eternal champion novel, complete with all the complex multiverse metaphysics that can really bog the story down. The story in this book is electric and should be fast paced if not for the pages and pages of pointless dialogue that you wouldn't find outside of a world summit of philosophy PHD's, or an episode of Dawson's Creek.
Despite seeming a little sterile in places where characterisation is weak, this is a great novel and well worth the time, even if you aren't a Moorcock verteran the first story is worth the price of the book alone
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Moorcock I've Read, 19 Aug. 2013
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Michael Moorcock is a brilliant character writer. All of his books are full of intriguing and cleverly written characters and this collection is no exception. In fact, this trilogy is particularly good in that aspect. Oswald Bastable is written consistently and convincingly throughout.

It is, as usual, easy to read but not overly simplistic. Moorcock writes about incredibly complicated and mind-boggling things in such a way that it doesn't stop the natural lyrical flow of the book. A Nomad of the Time Streams is full of sci-fi jargon about time travel, alternate realities and, of course, the multiverse but never gets bogged down in techno-babble.

The stories themselves are very creative. Time travel and alternate realities are not new ideas but Moorcock makes you feel like they are. The exploration of ethics, politics and relationships in a multiverse full of infinite possible realities is completely inspired and, while some of the authors own views (particularly concerning anarchism) are made abundantly obvious, the reader is never preached and it feels more like an exercise in observation rather than a social comment.

There is a deliberate pattern to the three books which makes reading them one immediately after the other a particularly rewarding experience as this builds up to an interesting climax in the final book. As much as the pattern is unmissable, the second and third books are not just re-writes of the first under another name but they build on the themes and would not, therefore, fare particularly well as stand-alone books.

Unlike the Von Bek trilogy which dips in the middle or the The Cornelius Quartet which has a particularly drawn out final installment, A Nomad of the Time Streams is a collection of three consistently brilliant and well paced books. Each is equally strong as the others and for that reason I think this may be the best Michael Moorcock I have read. So far, that is.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superior Pulp, 1 July 2003
By 
These stories are pulp fiction - quick to read, simple in structure, and disposable. They're also written by Moorcock, which means witty, exciting, strange, and thoroughly enjoyable. Lacking the pathos or depth found spread through other multiverse stories, these three novels are "just" huge fun. Don't be suprised if you put the book down to find that the hours have flown by and you've finished it at a sitting!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The British (and American) Empire Rises Again, 15 May 2003
The British Empire as a benign force, maintaining a Pax Britannica with the use of mighty aerial battleships, the dream
of Kipling and others. It was their version of the future.
Moorcock takes this idea and then invests it with a whole new
meaning, showing the empire to be anything but just and maintained by military power. The first book in the sequence is probably the best (including its portrait of Ronald Reagan as an incompetent scout master) but all of them are relevant to what goes on today as the American empire expands and the Russians do their best to keep what's left of theirs with force.
As usual, Moorcock shows remarkable prescience in books written
some twenty or thirty years ago. They are even more relevant to our troubled times. Moorcock doesn't date. He just matures! Well worth a read with their fascinating pictures of
a North America still maintaining its race laws and a Russia
where the Communists never won but which remained an imperial
nation, nonetheless. And there is an interesting secondary
theme in the books concerning the historical dropping of the
atomic bombs on Japan.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of Moorcock's very best, 13 Jan. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: A Nomad of the Time Streams (Tale of the Eternal Champion S.) (Paperback)
The three volumes of the Oswald Bastable series are collected here in a somewhat revised form (the final chapters of "The Steel Tsar" have been completely rewritten and some minor changes have been made to make these stories fit more neatly into the Eternal Champion framework.
"The Warlord of the Air" is one of Moorcock's best novels; perhaps best appreciated if you also read "The English Assassin" and "The Condition of Muzak."
The two sequels, "The Land Leviathan" and "The Steel Tsar" are less successful, but in this revised context, read as a single text are well worth the price, and then some.
A first rate example of alternate world SF; fans of sword and sorcery a la Elric may be disappointed, but this is a stunning evocation of the Edwardian Dream. Highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Imperial dreams, 10 Nov. 2001
Moorcock has written about imperialism in all its forms since the mid-19th century and his fantasy novels are equally obsessed with the subject. This is one of the subtlest and best examinations of Anglo-American 'benign' imperialism and has some meaninfgul echoes to contemporary events. The first of it kind and still the best. Moorcock is like Wells -- a powerhouse of new ideas which spawn a dozen new genres.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The strange tale of Cpt. Oswald Bastable, 17 April 1997
By A Customer
This review is from: A Nomad of the Time Streams (Tale of the Eternal Champion S.) (Paperback)
Cpt. Bastable is a officer of the British Army serving in India, in the early part of the 20th century. When he his unit is dispatched to put down a minor rebellion in the acient city of Teku Benga, Bastable is pulled into an alternate world similar but very different to his own. In his attempt to return to his own world he passes through two more alternate realities.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The series just gets better!, 25 Aug. 1997
By A Customer
This review is from: A Nomad of the Time Streams (Tale of the Eternal Champion S.) (Paperback)
This book is probably the most science-fictional of the four books in the series I have read thus far, and I'd probably consider it the best. The three tales of Oswald Bastable are rife with ideas and imagination. As usual, here are comments on the individual books:

Warlord of the Air: Great introduction to Bastable. I thought Moorcock in the beginning was him, so it was neat to see Bastable actually show up later. The future of 1973 that he goes to is great on the surface, but dark underneath, and the political arguments are anything but one-sided, highlighting both sides. Oh, and Oswald drops a bomb.

The Land Leviatian: This one reminded me of Heinlein's novel Farnham's Freehold, for some reason. The premise of blacks taking over the world in response to the crimes against them by whites is an interesting study of our world. Still, Bastable still feels lousy for helping to destroy the obviously unrepentant whites. Go figure.

The Steel Tsarr: Longest of the three, and probably the most complex, set in a democratic Russia at war with its Cossacks. Poor Bastable finally gets some peace with the help of Mrs Perrson. And is it me, or is the Steel Tsar a dead ringer for Stalin?

I enjoyed reading about Bastable and hopefully Moorcock will include more about him in the later book in the series. In this one, he mentions that Bastable is mentioned in Warriors at the End of Time, so perhaps he's there. I can't wait.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended, 25 Mar. 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: A Nomad of the Time Streams (Tale of the Eternal Champion S.) (Paperback)
"A Nomad of the Time Streams" is a unique and fun read, somewhere between Rudyard Kipling and H.G Wells. I think the concept alone is worth the price of the book--but of course, Moorcock is a writer of rare excellence and the result ranks with the best books of speculative fiction.
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A Nomad of the Time Streams (Tale of the Eternal Champion S.)
A Nomad of the Time Streams (Tale of the Eternal Champion S.) by Michael Moorcock (Paperback - April 1999)
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