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Legends II: New Short Novels by the Masters of Modern Fantasy [Kindle Edition]

Robert Silverberg , Raymond E. Feist , Robert Silverbert , Elizabeth Haydon , Tad Williams , Megan Lindholm as Robin Hobb , Orson Scott Card , Anne McCaffrey , Neil Gaiman , Diana Gabaldon , George R. R. Martin , Terry Brooks
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $5.99
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Fantasy fans, rejoice! Seven years after writer and editor Robert Silverberg made publishing history with Legends, his acclaimed anthology of original short novels by some of the greatest writers in fantasy fiction, the long-awaited second volume is here. Legends II picks up where its illustrious predecessor left off. All of the bestselling writers represented in Legends II return to the special universe of the imagination that its author has made famous throughout the world. Whether set before or after events already recounted elsewhere, whether featuring beloved characters or compelling new creations, these masterful short novels are both mesmerizing stand-alones—perfect introductions to the work of their authors—and indispensable additions to the epics on which they are based. Beyond any doubt, Legends II is the fantasy event of the season.

ROBIN HOBB returns to the Realm of the Elderlings with “Homecoming,” a powerful tale in which exiles sent to colonize the Cursed Shores find themselves sinking into an intoxicating but deadly dream . . . or is it a memory?
GEORGE R. R. MARTIN continues the adventures of Dunk, a young hedge knight, and his unusual squire, Egg, in “The Sworn Sword,” set a generation before the events in A Song of Ice and Fire.
ORSON SCOTT CARD tells a tale of Alvin Maker and the mighty Mississippi, featuring a couple of ne’er-do-wells named Jim Bowie and Abe Lincoln, in “The Yazoo Queen.”
DIANE GABALDON turns to an important character from her Outlander saga—Lord John Grey—in “Lord John and the Succubus,” a supernatural thriller set in the early days of the Seven Years War.
ROBERT SILVERBERG spins an enthralling tale of Majipoor’s early history—and remote future—as seen through the eyes of a dilettantish poet who discovers an unexpected destiny in “The Book of Changes.”
TAD WILLIAMS explores the strange afterlife of Orlando Gardiner, from his Otherland saga, in “The Happiest Dead Boy in the World.”
ANNE McCAFFREY shines a light into the most mysterious and wondrous of all places on Pern in the heartwarming “Beyond Between.”
RAYMOND E. FEIST turns from the great battles of the Riftwar to the story of one soldier, a young man about to embark on the ride of his life, in “The Messenger.”
ELIZABETH HAYDON tells of the destruction of Serendair and the fate of its last defenders in “Threshold,” set at the end of the Third Age of her Symphony of Ages series.
NEIL GAIMAN gives us a glimpse into what befalls the man called Shadow after the events of his Hugo Award–winning novel American Gods in “The Monarch of the Glen.”
TERRY BROOKS adds an exciting epilogue to The Wishsong of Shannara in “Indomitable,” the tale of Jair Ohmsford’s desperate quest to complete the destruction of the evil Ildatch . . . armed only with the magic of illusion.

From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Brimming with action and energy, wit and charm, pathos and joy, Silverberg's anthology of short novels from 11 masters of fantasy, six of whom contributed to the original Legends (1998), provides a dazzling display of the genre's variety and versatility. Otherland fans will welcome Tad Williams's The Happiest Dead Boy in the World as a chance to visit with an old friend they never thought to see again. George R.R. Martin's The Sworn Sword, which continues the story of Dunk and Egg that he began in the first Legends, will also please his readers. All the returning authors more than live up to their reputations, except for Anne McCaffrey, whose Beyond Between, an ill-conceived explanation of what happens when a dragon fails to return from between, strikes the book's lone sour note. Yet for all the returnees' star power, it's the new authors who truly shine here. Elizabeth Haydon's entry, Threshold, follows five doomed friends left to guard the remnants of a civilization about to be destroyed in a cataclysm after most of the populace has already fled to a safe haven: a stunning tale of courage and honor, duty and friendship, it may be the book's best entry. Robin Hobb's Homecoming, the story of the settlement of the Rain Wild River and one woman's journey to independence, is the other contender. Terry Brooks, Diana Gabaldon, Raymond E. Feist, Orson Scott Card, Neil Gaiman and Silverberg round out the all-star cast.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Many contributors to Legends (1998), Silverberg's first collection of short(er) stories set in the worlds of their authors' successful fantasy series, return in the follow-up. Anne McCaffrey offers a freestanding tale of Pern; Raymond E. Feist, a tale from the middle of his Riftwar saga; George R. R. Martin, a direct successor to his Legends contribution about a squire on the way to knighthood and his peculiar boy sidekick; editor Silverberg, another Majipoor story; and Orson Scott Card, a yarn in which Alvin Maker meets some of the Alamo's destined defenders. Splash first timers include romantic historical fantasist Diana Gabaldon, of Outlander fame, with an episode in her Lord John Grey series; Neil Gaiman, with a story starring Shadow, hero of his award-winning American Gods (2001) and named after Sir Edwin Landseer's famous painting Monarch of the Glen; and Robin Hobb, whose creepy, Liveship Traders-related "Homecoming" (think H. P. Lovecraft rewriting The Swiss Family Robinson) opens this book and sets the bar of quality extremely high for what follows. Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Details

  • File Size: 1020 KB
  • Print Length: 656 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 034547578X
  • Publisher: Del Rey; anthology edition (December 30, 2003)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FC0Y0Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,332 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Legends is one of the best fantasy collections January 30, 2004
In 1998 Robert Silverberg edited a collection of fantasy stories titled "Legends". That collection included stories by some of the best and most popular fantasy authors of the time (Robert Jordan, Raymond Feist, Stephen King, George Martin, etc). It was one of the best collections I had read, and allowed me to revisit some familiar worlds and discover some brand new ones. Legends II is the second collection by Robert Silverberg and it is just as good as the first collection. There are some authors that did not return for this collection (Robert Jordan, Stephen King, Terry Pratchett), some that returned (Raymond Feist, George Martin, Robert Silverberg, Anne McCaffrey), and some that are making their first appearance in Legends (Terry Brooks, Robin Hobb, Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Haydon). These stories are all mostly of high quality, and if you are looking for an excellent sampling of talented and popular fantasy authors, this is the volume for you.
What I like best about the Legends collections is that they give me the chance to revisit some of my favorite authors and see their worlds from a different perspective than that which is presented in their novels. Raymond Feist returns to Midkemia with a story set during the Riftwar. "The Messenger" is a story of the messengers who bring the military orders from one commander to another, risking their lives in the process. Some minor characters from the novels make an appearance, and some major ones are mentioned, and though this has a simple storyline, this is a well told story. George Martin continues the story of Dunk and Egg that he began in the first Legends. "The Sworn Sword" is one of my favorite stories in the collection and it is set approximately a hundred years before "A Game of Thrones".
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and Pleasing February 24, 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I must admit that I was completely drawn in to The Sworn Sword, the first story by George R. R. Martin. I could not seem to put the book down, I was mesmerized. As I continued to read on and focus on the next few stories, I found myself missing the first, but, that was soon to fade away upon reading Threshold by Elizabeth Haydon. That work was also beautiful and seemingly flawless. This book in general, every story, runs your mind around these authors vivid imaginations and turn your world upside down for the moment! Great read, highly recommended!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Spotty "Legends" August 31, 2004
Robert Silverberg delighted fantasy fans with the "Legends" anthology, containing solid novellas by everyone from Stephen King to Ursula Le Guin. But there are only so many good fantasy series out there, and the sequel anthology "Legends II" has a deadweight of tepid stories.

Silverberg himself contributes a story in his classic Mahjipoor series, an eerie tale of Mahjipoor's early history; George Martin provides a solid prequel for his dark epic Song of Fire and Ice series, while Tad Williams gives an insight into the post-death activities of a supporting character from the Otherland series, complete with a funny Tolkien homage ("Fare thee well also, Tharagorn, Cuddler of Elves"), and Terry Brooks gives an enticing if rushed epilogue to "Wishsong of Shannara." And Neil Gaiman provides a short-ish sequel featuring the hero of his "American Gods" book, an eerie dark gem.

Unfortunately, there are some very sketchy choices to round off the volume. Elizabeth Haydon's cataclysmic novella is bogged down by her overdramatic writing and overemotional characters. Anne McCaffrey's story is weirdly anticlimactic, as if she changed her mind what she wanted to happen in the "Moreta" book. And what is Diana Gabaldon's bizarre "Lord John and the Succubus" doing in this? It's more historical romance than fantasy.

The problem with "Legends II" is that it feels cobbled together, as if Silverberg chose whichever bestselling fantasies he could find (short of the "Harry Potter" series), and ignored the quality. At least it includes a wide range of fantasy. There's historical fantasy (Orson Scott Card's alternate US), sci-fantasy (Tad Williams), and dark fantasy that verges on horror (Neil Gaiman).
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great collection of short novels. March 8, 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I got this collection of stories just for George R. R. Martin's 'The Sworn Sword,' but after reading all of the stories I am now interested in a few new authors. This is a solid collection and I recommend it to any fans of the fantasy genre.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Going back for more August 27, 2006
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Both Legends I and II are must haves for any SF/Fantasy fan. I orginally purchased Legends I for Robert Jordan's and Tad William's short stories. I then promptly put it up on my shelf for a few years. I picked up Legends II for the Robin Hobb short. I then also filed it on my shelf. Somehow I have made it through tons of fantasy while dodging some of the most "advertised" names. I recently ran out of books to read. In my search for new authors, I scowered the net, and asked several friends for recommendations. One of my friends suggested I pick up Terry Pratchett, my net search said try George R.R. Martin... I had a fleeting thought that "hey they are popular, wonder if they are in Legends". Sure enough they are and then some. I pulled both Legends I and II off of my shelf and devoured several of the stories that I had previously ignored. It made a perfect way of deciding which authors I would like to read more of and which ones I could probably pass on. Both Legends I and II are treasures which should not be overlooked. I sincerly hope there is a Legends III.
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