- Mass Market Paperback: 215 pages
- Publisher: Avon Books (July 1, 1987)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0380896362
- ISBN-13: 978-0380896363
- Product Dimensions: 4 x 0.5 x 7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,421,810 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Blood of Amber (Chronicles of Amber: The Merlin Cycle, Book II) Mass Market Paperback – July 1, 1987
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In the first book, Merlin survived multiple attempts on his life, and book two is no different. However, by this time Merlin is starting to get a handle on who some of the parties behind those attempts may be, and at least one of them is quite a surprise.
In this book, as in many, Zelazny shows a genius for making the mundane sound interesting. If he wants to give you the feel of a long and thought filled journey, he GIVES you a lengthy description of the long and though filled journey. The journey takes time for you as well as Merlin. Zelazny fills the description with tidbits of what fills Merlin's senses. He describes details both mundane and extraordinary and makes it all interesting to the reader. That's no easy task for a writer to accomplish, but it seems effortless for Zelazny.
The details of where this part of Merlin's story begins and ends is absolutely irrelevant, because you aren't going to be picking out this book apart from the rest of the series to read by itself. You MUST read all five books to get the complete story. None of the five stands on its own, and the first four generally end either on a cliffhanger or a startling revelation. So I'm not going to provide any more detail of the storyline than I've already hinted at.
After you read "The Trumps of Doom", just continue right along with this one and enjoy. Make sure you have all five books in the series at hand, because you won't want to wait even a minute from the end of one to the first chapter of the next. I feel for the people who had to wait two years to continue their read as these books were published. Actually, that group includes me for the five books of Merlin's story. I read the first five books encompassing Corwin's tale all at once, but finished them just about the time "The Trumps of Doom" was published. Luckily I read these books so long ago that I only remember the details of the plot as I read and am reminded, so it's pretty close to a new read for me. I'm lucky that my memory was not sufficient to recall any more than it did of these books! LOL
Blood of Amber reveals a layered series of plots all of which want Merlin either dead or under close control. Relatives, friends, and potential mates all are suspect while the fate of Amber hangs in the balance - and perhaps the fate of all that lies in shadow as well. For the alternate Pattern created by Corwin to stave off the advance of Chaos has begin to create reverberations of its own and shadow storms are beginning to wreak havoc.
At some point, the reader will realize that all the intricate moves that comprise the action in Blood of Amber are getting too rapid to keep good track of. At this point one must simply go along for the ride from wasteland to wonderland. It is the nature of Zelazny's writing that this remains fun, rather than dissolving in the same chaos that threatens Amber.
The main thing that annoys me is the way he pulls things out of his hat, out of nowhere, destroying the credibility of the story. Anyone can do anything at any time. At the end of this book, for example, he takes us to Alice In Wonderland World. I feel like screaming at him - cut it out, dammit! You have a good story here. Then you ruin it.
Another thing that annoys me about his style is that he over-plans. He has way too much detail to tease us with. He leaves us with so many loose ends. Who is this guy, who is that guy, what is the significance of this detail, and so on. Too much already. We know you are writing a story. We know you planned it out to the nth degree. We only know what you tell us. Stop leaving so many puzzles there for us, it's annoying.
Something keeps me reading this series. Book Six gave me hope that he would get sober and serious and just tell us a story, but then Book Seven took us to Wonderland and had us in Dungeon and Dragon land with the spells. Zelazny should have put some limits and some rules on his universe instead of just winging it in any direction he felt like going, from book to book.
The concept is interesting enough to rival Lord of the Rings, and the sense of humor far surpasses LOTR, which has very little of that. But Zelazny really should have taken this writing more seriously and given us a credible universe instead of an ever-changing cartoon. This whole series screams "wasted potential".