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The Urth of the New Sun (Orbit Books) Paperback – 1 Jan 1988

3.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Futura Orbit; New edition edition (1 Jan. 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0708882684
  • ISBN-13: 978-0708882689
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.4 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 750,139 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

""The Urth of the New Sun is a fine coda to what is arguable the finest piece of literature American science fiction has yet produced, the four-volume "Book of the New Sun."--"Chicago Sun-Times
"Gene Wolfe's new book soars, falls free, runs like the river that runs through it from universe to universe, between life and death and life again. The groundnote of it all is human pain, so that this fantasy has the weight of vision."--Ursula K. Le Guin
"Gene Wolfe's four-volume magnum opus, "The Book of the New Sun, is one of the modern masterpieces of imaginative literature--an evocation of a world so far in the future that magic and technology, poetry and science, are indistinguishable, a world heavy with time but yet bereft of hope, a world brought to life by Mr. Wolfe's unique blend of slightly archaic diction and ever-surprising vocabulary. Readers familiar with these volumes will find much to enjoy in "The Urth of the new Sun."--"The New York Times


""The Urth of the New Sun" is a fine coda to what is arguable the finest piece of literature American science fiction has yet produced, the four-volume "Book of the New Sun.""--"Chicago Sun-Times"
"Gene Wolfe's new book soars, falls free, runs like the river that runs through it from universe to universe, between life and death and life again. The groundnote of it all is human pain, so that this fantasy has the weight of vision."--Ursula K. Le Guin
"Gene Wolfe's four-volume magnum opus, "The Book of the New Sun, " is one of the modern masterpieces of imaginative literature--an evocation of a world so far in the future that magic and technology, poetry and science, are indistinguishable, a world heavy with time but yet bereft of hope, a world brought to life by Mr. Wolfe's unique blend of slightly archaic diction and ever-surprising vocabulary. Readers familiar with these volumes will find much to enjoy in "The Urth of the new Sun.""--"The New York Times"


"The Urth of the New Sun" is a fine coda to what is arguable the finest piece of literature American science fiction has yet produced, the four-volume "Book of the New Sun." "Chicago Sun-Times"

Gene Wolfe's new book soars, falls free, runs like the river that runs through it from universe to universe, between life and death and life again. The groundnote of it all is human pain, so that this fantasy has the weight of vision. "Ursula K. Le Guin"

Gene Wolfe's four-volume magnum opus, "The Book of the New Sun, " is one of the modern masterpieces of imaginative literature--an evocation of a world so far in the future that magic and technology, poetry and science, are indistinguishable, a world heavy with time but yet bereft of hope, a world brought to life by Mr. Wolfe's unique blend of slightly archaic diction and ever-surprising vocabulary. Readers familiar with these volumes will find much to enjoy in "The Urth of the new Sun." "The New York Times"" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Gene Wolfe is one of the most admired and respected living writers of SF and fantasy. He is the author of "The Fifth Head of Cerberus", the bestselling The Book of the New Sun tetralogy, as well as among many others including "Soldier of the Mist", "The Sorcerer s House", "Home Fires", "The Knight", "The Wizard", "Peace", and "The Book of the Long Sun". He is also a prolific writer of distinguished short fiction, which is collected in many volumes over the last four decades, most recently in The Best of Gene Wolfe. He received the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement, the Edward E. Smith Memorial Award, and multiple Nebula and Locus awards, among other honors. In 2007, he was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame. In 2012, he was awarded the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Grand Master Award. He lives in Barrington, Illinois. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Steven Fouch VINE VOICE on 9 Aug. 2000
Format: Paperback
If you have read and enjoyed the "Book of the New Sun" then this book is a must. Wolfe has created in Severian, Torturer, Ruler and Saviour of a far future dying Earth, one of modern Science Fiction's most intriguing and unlikely characters. His often bizarre, episodic adventures create a complex picture of a world that is slowly dying, weighed down by the weight of millennia of history and the dabbling of various alien races.
This sequel takes the story of Severian, now installed as Autarch of the Commonwealth one step further. Taken beyond the circles of our Universe by a giant starship crewed by strange and often adversarial crewmen from all across time and space, Severian must stand the ultimate trial to see if he is the messianic New Sun who will bring the dying Old Sun back to life.
Where the first novel painted a complex picture of a familiar yet alien world through Severian's subjective narrative which explains little and leaves much to the reader's imagination and powers of deduction (and memory - it bears repeated reading), "Urth of the New Sun" takes Severian on a more metaphysical trip through time and space.
Time indeed becomes one the characters in the story, and one has to constantly go back to obscure incidents in the original to understand the full significance of some of the events and characters in this novel. It is a bizarre, sometimes confusing narrative, but Wolfe's love of language and classic story telling holds together a very episodic and convoluted narrative.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Few books work on as many levels as Gene Wolfe's The Book of the New Sun and few works have a 'sequal' that extends and completes the original work while doing something new and original. The Urth of the New Sun does all of these thing while providing any reader who has reached this point an extra later of meaning and clarity to what has gone before. Biblical and classical references are brought into sharper focus without so much masquerade as previous volumes, which some will welcome.

Few works compare to The Book of the New Sun and fewer endings compare to The Urth of the New Sun. Your journey with Severian is not complete without it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you have read and enjoyed the "Book of the New Sun" then this book is a must. Wolfe has created in Severian, Torturer, Ruler and Saviour of a far future dying Earth, one of modern Science Fiction's most intriguing and unlikely characters. His often bizarre, episodic adventures create a complex picture of a world that is slowly dying, weighed down by the weight of millennia of history and the dabbling of various alien races.
This sequel takes the story of Severian, now installed as Autarch of the Commonwealth one step further. Taken beyond the circles of our Universe by a giant starship crewed by strange and often adversarial crewmen from all across time and space, Severian must stand the ultimate trial to see if he is the messianic New Sun who will bring the dying Old Sun back to life.
Where the first novel painted a complex picture of a familiar yet alien world through Severian's subjective narrative which explains little and leaves much to the reader's imagination and powers of deduction (and memory - it bears repeated reading), "Urth of the New Sun" takes Severian on a more metaphysical trip through time and space.
Time indeed becomes one the characters in the story, and one has to constantly go back to obscure incidents in the original to understand the full significance of some of the events and characters in this novel. It is a bizarre, sometimes confusing narrative, but Wolfe's love of language and classic story telling holds together a very episodic and convoluted narrative.
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Format: Paperback
Having loved the original Book of the New Sun I was excited to find out about the existence of this sequel. Considering that the main series is pretty popular, I was surprised by how difficult it was to get hold of a copy and how little awareness of it there seems to be. I don't know why that is, because to my mind, it was almost as good as its predecessors, which are very impressive books indeed (I'd definitely give them five stars, I'm giving this four as the plot wasn't quite as compelling). In writing this review, I'm assuming you've read the original series - technically, this could function as a stand alone book, but I really wouldn't recommend reading it without having read the others first.

The book opens a couple of decades after the end of the final part of BotNS, with the main character and narrator, Severian, on a gigantic spaceship on a mission to find a way to restore his planet, Urth's, dying sun. There's little explanation of what has happened in the intervening years or, initially at least, of exactly how he proposes to do this, and as a result, I spent the first few chapters feeling quite disorientated. It's been a while since I'd read the other books so I'm not sure if this would be clearer if you wee reading them back to back, or if it's a deliberate ploy by an author who seems to revel in keeping his readers thinking. From there, the plot spreads out in all kind of directions that can't really be summarised here, but which, suffice to say, are always interesting.

The literary style, the clever use of real but obscure words, the compelling (and probably unreliable) first person narrator and the strange, sweeping plot that made the earlier books so unique are all in place.
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