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Ghost of the Well of Souls Paperback – April 4, 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey (April 4, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345490304
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345490308
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,902,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Jack Chalker's Well World epic occupies an honored place among the classics of science fiction. Now this boldly imagined, intricately plotted new novel takes us deeper into the Well World than ever before . . .

On the mysterious Well World, the evil tyrant Josich and his dark agents search desperately for the eight scattered pieces of the fabled Straight Gate. Whoever possesses the Gate will wield enormous power, travelling between universes at the speed of light and wreaking havoc across galaxies.

Opposing Josich is a small band of travelers new to the Well World. There is Core, once a machine, now flesh and blood; Ming and Ari, two minds sharing a single body; Jaysu, an angel; and Genghis O'Leary, a lizard being. Unbeknownst to them, they have an unlikely ally: a vengeful entity who is able to clone any person or object with a single touch--and mete out death just as swift . . . --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Jack L. Chalker was born in Baltimore, Maryland, on December 17, 1944. While still in high school, he began writing for the amateur science-fiction press, and in 1960 he launched the Hugo-nominated amateur magazine Mirage. A year later he founded Mirage Press, which grew into a major specialty publisher of nonfiction and reference books on science fiction and fantasy.

His first novel, A Jungle of Stars, was published in 1976, and he became a full-time novelist two years later with the major popular success of Midnight at the Well of Souls. Chalker is an active conservationist and enjoys traveling, consumer electronics, and computers. He is also a noted speaker on science fiction and fantasy at numerous colleges and universities. He is a passionate lover of steamboats, in particular ferryboats, and has ridden more than three hundred ferries in the United States and elsewhere.


From the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 18, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I read the reviews before I bought and figured that the negatives were "I miss Nathan Brazil". I was wrong.
The only character I grew to like had her mind wiped pretty much right away, so I didn't really care about her later.
The plot was so convoluted and confusing, and by the end the threat so unclear, that by the end of the second book I hardly cared who won.
You know, if you read this Jack, I cared about Renard, Nicki, Wu Julie, Asam, Marquoz, Serge Ortega, Gypsy and Prof. Zinder, every one of them more than I cared about any of these characters. What made the previous books great was caring about the characters.
Also, the underwater people were just wet land people. They thought and acted like they were just land people trying to dom the things that land people do with the "problem" of all that water being in the way. A water people would LIKE being in the water, and their entire culture would reflect that.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Glenda Gertz on April 20, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Well, hmmm. I would have liked to have liked this book -- I've always enjoyed the Well World books -- but this one was somewhat disappointing. It seemed very rushed, and plotlines that were introduced in the previous book were downplayed or ignored entirely. For instance, the whole "The Avenger must triumph not for revenge" plotline suggested in first book was never really used, and Kincaid's role throughout both books is reduced to that of a rarely-seen bogey-man -- in fact, he turns out to be a totally unimportant character, whose role could have been filled by any other character. The other "pivotal" character, Angel, gains extraordinary powers in order to ultimately become -- the world's most powerful librarian. Josich is present only in the last 20-pages or so of the book, and this makes the whole ending seem rather rushed. None of the actions of the characters preceding the denoument actually has any meaningful impact on the climax of the story, and the only unpredictable parts come when Chalker changes the rules on us (with hand-waving as to why Brazil & Chang might have not been called, and glossing over why the Well World didn't take more action to protect itself earlier on). Furthermore, it's as if I've seen these characters before. Granted, even in the non-Well books, the signature of all of Chalker's writing is to take characters and mangle them physically and emotionally, but even beyond that, Core is largely synonymous with Obie, Kincaid is Brazil without the screen time, Angel is a weird mix of Wuju and Vardia, and Jules is a near dead-ringer for Hain. (I will admit, however, to getting a real chuckle when O'Leary and his group actually swallow some of the bad guys... :-)
Twenty pages from the end, it appeared to me like we'd need a whole other book to finish this story, which I was thoroughly engrossed in. Instead, we get a 5-minute fix as if it were some Star Trek cliffhanger, and I was left saying, "What....?"
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By a sci-fi reader on April 28, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Along with the Sea is Full of Stars, I found these two books the best of all the books. Perhaps it was because there was no Nathan Brazil or Mavra Chang who can not lose due to the Well World itself aiding them. Having Kincaid as a "bogey-man" in the background actually fit his personality and characterization. Each major character had their purpose and part and if one looks at the theme of these books with some detachment from the earlier books, the story is actually very different.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Seth Willick on January 9, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have followed and reread all of the Well's 10 books several times. I find this series as well as the Flux and Diamond series to be the best works of scifi written since Asimov. Some readers have written their displeasure due to the limited use of the most interesting character; however, even in the original Well series, Nathan (God) only dominated a portion of the series (including the book with his name on the cover). Sometimes, less is more. The ending of this book leaves a huge door open to sequals and a new possible mixture of the foundling empires of the "real" galaxy with a mixture of the Well and it's inhabitants. I guess the other readers just miss Obie (or were overly hot for Mavra).
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15 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Soler on June 6, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
As soon as I read Chalker's introduction to this duology - the newest addition to the increasingly large Well World series - I decided to give it a try. So it wasn't a part of the normal canon, as he put it, but instead a book about Something Else. Well and good, I'm always ready to try something new from an established story teller.
Two books and about 700 pages later, I still don't know what he was talking about. I'm also extremely perplexed: just what happened to Chalker's writing? His prose, plotting, character development - even his humor - don't match up with the previous work that bears his name. This duology provided such a lackluster story that I am at a complete loss to explain its existence in print. I'm tempted to visit Chalker's web site and write him an email asking, "Why?" The only possible answer I can derive comes from Chalker's shameless introductory statement that he didn't plan to return to the Well World until someone fronted a sizeable sum. Apparently, this offer didn't provide enough impetus for Chalker to return to form.
Page 1 of the first novel, "The Sea is Full of Stars," starts with the strong, confident narrative voice I remember from Chalker's earlier novels. Unfortunately, this turns out to be the sole shining moment for the entire series. I almost wish that Delrey hadn't plugged these into the original Well World saga as books 6 and 7. They don't belong in the same category as the originals.
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