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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely original and unique
Zelazny's classic "Lord of Light" told of a technological future world where humans had set themselves up as the Hindu gods. It is a tour de force, highly original work that takes science fiction so far it becomes fantasy and mythology.

"Creatures of Light and Darkness" takes all of this two steps further. The result is highly non-linear, sometimes hard to...
Published on December 17, 2005 by Amazon Customer

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13 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Once every thousand years...
In this book the gods of ancient Egypt are and have always been. And we can assume that the gods of our ancient Egypt were echoes of these beings. Our story begins in the House of the Dead where Anubis wakes a seemingly undefeatable man whose memory was taken and is to be his emissary. Anubis and Osiris each send an emmissary to a Middle World bent on destroying the only...
Published on August 29, 2004 by M. A. Ramos


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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely original and unique, December 17, 2005
By 
Zelazny's classic "Lord of Light" told of a technological future world where humans had set themselves up as the Hindu gods. It is a tour de force, highly original work that takes science fiction so far it becomes fantasy and mythology.

"Creatures of Light and Darkness" takes all of this two steps further. The result is highly non-linear, sometimes hard to follow, with characters that are almost abstract rather than human. And it is all, incredibly, indescribably brilliant...so far beyond the general run of the mill science-fiction and fantasy writing to be outside the genre.

I can only imagine people either hating or loving this book. I happen to love it...
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As creative as they get, November 7, 2007
By 
Doug M "陀愚" (The Jack n' the Box at the corner) - See all my reviews
Of all the Zelazny books I have read, this book definitely gets an A+ for creativity. The book kind of reads like a short story that's been stretched out somewhat, but it's really more of an epic poem written in the far future. The characters that Zelazny weaves are just so creative: Madrak the "non-theistic, non-sectarian" priest and his non-commital prayers, Vramin the poet with this green hair and beard, The Prince Who Was A Thousand and his ability to teleport anywhere in the Universe.

I think this and Lord of Light present Zelazny at his best: he's creative, very witty and not afraid to bend reality as we know it.

It's a short book but a great read. Take my advice: if you don't fully understand it the first time, read it again and you'll get so much more out of it.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even better than Lord of Light; deserves to be in print., December 7, 1997
The Egyptian pantheon, the lands of the dead and living, a Steel General, some very old shoes, prayers that apologize for disturbing a deity which may or may nor exist.... Only Zelazny could combine them all, and only Zelazny could bring it all off so brilliantly. What a loss that he is no longer with us, and what a tragedy that this book is no longer in print.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zelazny's Bizarre, Experimental Masterpiece, November 22, 2010
By 
T. Simons (United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Creatures of Light and Darkness (Paperback)
This isn't your every-day sci-fi/fantasy novel.

Roger Zelazny was arguably the greatest fantasy/sf writer of his era, and this was his first published novel -- his "Masterpiece" in the archaic sense of "his first work as a professional." He wrote it while he was still working at the Social Security Administration, and it's a *wildly* experimental book. The superficial plot is one of assassination and revenge -- a dead man is reincarnated by one calling himself Anubis, for a mission of assassination -- but that's almost no more than a framework Zelazny uses to display the novel's various experiments.

Different chapters are written in different narrative styles -- one chapter's a play, one's a lyric poem, one's a call-and-response poem. Some chapters mimic the style of the King James bible. Some chapters are hilarious; some are nonsensical and cryptic. Some are only a paragraph or two long. It's probably best known today for containing the "Possibly Proper Death Litany," popularly known as the "Agnostic's Prayer" ("Insofar as I may be heard by anything, which may or may not care what I say, I ask, if it matters . . ."), but that's just one wild verbal fling in a book of continuous bizarreries.

If you're looking for something like Zelazny's The Great Book of Amber: The Complete Amber Chronicles, 1-10 (Chronicles of Amber) -- high-quality, well-executed, popular fiction -- this is *not* that: this is something closer to a verbal experiment than a popular novel, something Zelazny wrote to help himself find his voice as a writer by experimenting extravagantly with voice, narrative, genre, and form.

If you're a fan of Zelazny's more esoteric, experimental works -- things like A Night in the Lonesome October, say -- you owe it to yourself to read this, as it has some of his most interesting and bizarre visions, some of his wildest experiments with form and genre; conversely, though, if you haven't read much other Zelazny, this isn't the place to start. Pick up Lord of Light or Isle of the Dead instead.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wyrd, September 17, 2000
By 
"malchiatt" (Santa Fe, New Mexico USA) - See all my reviews
From the moment of first contact I was thrown into a dream. It is a rare gift to be able to write without relying on logical, straightforward and often boring prose. Zelazny shows us what it means to write with intuition, how to write textures, raw sensual input. I read this book a while ago, then I read more of Zelazny's work, in fact all that I could find. Then I came back and read this book again. It remains my favorite, if only because it is still inexplicable, incomprehensible, and unique.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Its now my favorite book., April 27, 2004
This book made me read other Roger Zelazny books because it was just so good.The battles he portrays are monsterous with his descriptions of the characters thoughts and movements.I really couldn't stop reading.There really is no one writer like him.
I would also recommend Lord Demon by this author.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creatures of Mythology, February 21, 2006
I can`t believe, that this novel by Roger Zelazny was never reprinted in the USA since 1970!!! It is one of his best novels.
Especially if you like "Lord of Light" and Ancient Egypt, because heroes of the novel and the poetical style of writing are borrowed from the Ancient Egyptian mythology and literature.
New Wave fantasy at its best. By the way, it`s hard to define the genre of this book. It`s not commercial entertaiment sci-fi literature. In the end of the 60s writers bravely wrote about the meaning of the human life and the destiny of humankind. "Creatures of Light and Darkness" was one of such efforts.
In Russia this book was reprinted many times in last 15 years.
So if you are fan of Zelazny and didn`t read this book - it is mistake - just read it!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zelazny at his most idiosyncratic, April 19, 2010
This review is from: Creatures of Light and Darkness (Paperback)
Roger Zelazny is commonly considered as one of the brightest lights of SF's 1960s "new wave" writers. Although he's best known for his works Lord of Light and the Amber series -- all fine books in their own rights -- Creatures of Light and Darkness stands out to me as perhaps his most endearing work and one which I believe reflects more of his character than any other. As with many of his other works, he subverts a historical pantheon to his own purposes, recasting many of ancient Egypt's deities as the dramatis personae of his little book. The story is short, recounting the struggles of exiled Thoth, Isis and "sun-eyed" Set against the scheming trio of Anubis, Osiris and Horus. During the course of this telling, though, we are introduced to many memorable characters such as the Prince Who Was a Thousand, Madrak the non-denominational cleric, the Steel General and his warhorse Bronze and even a renegade monster from the Greek mythos, Typhon, cast here as the incorporeal shadow of a horse. Zelazny also plays (and play is indeed the operative word, I think) with the concept of time with his invention of "temporal fugue." It is the playfulness of the writing, as well as the poetic aspect to the language used, that fuels my claim that we are seeing more of Roger Zelazny the English major and sometime poet. In this book, Zelazny delights in a well-wrought turn of phrase and turning the standard stories of the Egyptian mythos on their head (Osiris attempting the murder of Set? Horus as a petty schemer?) I can only imagine Zelazny laughing uproariously while committing this story to paper, and in turn I delight in its reading, as it tells a clever little story in a most compelling way. There is something to elicit delight on every page of this book.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Zelazny's Best, June 17, 2009
Gripping, hilarious, and structurally inventive by turns, this book falls in the Venn diagram overlap between Zelazny's own Lord of Light, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and Proust -- while weighing in at barely more than 200 pages. Reading this book after reading Lord of Light cemented Zelazny in my mind as the greatest of the New Wave SF writers, and it's a true shame that it hasn't been in print in the US for some time.

The plot seems quite complicated but actually is not difficult to understand. However, Zelazny says many key things only once, thus rewarding close readers, while at the same time inserting entire scenes early on that do not appear relevant to the book until its final third, thus frustrating those same close readers. If you're lucky enough to find a copy, read it with joy and with Keats' negative capability, that state of being "in uncertainties, mysteries, and doubts without any irritable reaching after fact and reason." You'll be treated to one of the great classics of Science Fiction.

But if the above is too high-brow for you, consider the following: this book contains a cybernetic knight who strums a banjo while riding his cybernetic eight-legged warhorse through space, wears the last piece of his original body's flesh on a chain around his neck, and, at one point, destroys a planet during a temporal kung fu fight against an assassin sent by the god of death. And he's about an average cast member in terms of power level and awesomeness. You owe yourself this book.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The work of a , in his prime..., July 7, 1999
By A Customer
This is a wonderful work of poetic prose. Most authors couldn't pull this style of writing off. And , perhaps, only Bradbury has done it better. To compare this novel with "Lord of Light" is to compare variations of a theme.Simply because they both have to do with non-christion pantheons,doesn't mean that they have anything to do with each other. More quatrane, than coherant novel. This work is a wonder of philosphical imagery. ah, hell...I just liked it alot, o.k ?
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Creatures of Light and Darkness
Creatures of Light and Darkness by Roger Zelazny (Paperback - April 13, 2010)
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