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Figures of Earth (Wildside Fantasy) Paperback – December 1, 2001
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From the Publisher
Cabell has been a favorite author of many famous writers, ranging from Lin Carter to Robert A. Heinlein.
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
This book is chronologically the first in his "series" -- his fantasy works are primarily set in a mythical medieval french realm called "Poictesme", and this book is a biography of the founder, Count Manuel, whose motto is "Mundus Vult Decipiti" ("The World Wishes to be Deceived"). It's a sharp book, aimed at sharp readers, and very amusing for what it is (if somewhat bitter). The only problem with it is that he wrote it after writing _Jurgen_, and Jurgen is simply funnier and more entertaining and better -- as good as this book is, Jurgen is the same thing, but better, pretty much across the board, a better satire of contemporary norms, a better puncturing of worldly ideals. So, read Jurgen first; if you really like it and want more, read this one next.
For those who are new to him, much of Cabell's work comprises a vast, sprawling, interlocking & self-referential opus called The Biography of Manuel, the tale of a Medieval hero, his family, his comrades, and his many descendants. As noted by the previous reviewer, these works don't need to be read in any particular order, as they're all pieces of a vast mosaic, one that shifts its focus with the dazzling wonder of a kaleidoscope. This particular volume gives us the life story of Manuel himself, his many curious & occasionally decadent adventures, his encounters with magicians & deities, and his eventual ascendance as the great hero of mythical Poictesme.
I don't want to say much more about the plot, because Cabell's work is as much about the telling of the tale as the tale itself: flowing, witty & perversely droll prose with flashes of extraordinary beauty, which is often immediately punctured by a perfect bon mot. Cabell loves his creation as a bemused god loves his universe, attention darting like a jeweled dragonfly, playing with it as indeed more than one deity does in the pages of the Biography.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
great story, my personal favorite of Cabell, of course I have not read it all. But I hope to read King Rat soon.Published 9 months ago by David Swanson
This book has some very funny moments, it's main flaws are pacing and trying to set the right tone.Published 12 months ago by Amazon Customer
I rarely review a purchase. I even more rarely return a book. The typeface used in this book is terrible, faded, and almost unreadable. Read morePublished on September 24, 2010 by Dave
This is one of his shorter novels, but incredibly rich from beginning to end. I don't consider it inferior to any of his books. Read morePublished on September 5, 2009 by grozny