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The Inheritance: And Other Stories Paperback – May 3, 2011

4.4 out of 5 stars 71 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“At once harrowing, unexpected, and morally complex. . . . I’m eager to see what happens next.” (Locus)

“Displaying Hobb’s gift for creating unusual and compelling worlds, [Shaman’s Crossing] maintains her high standard of storytelling.” (Library Journal)

“Fast action, deep emotional bonds and a great ending...[I] encourage you to check out Dragon Haven.” (Blogcritics.com)

“FOREST MAGE presents a darker and more complex hero in Nevare . . .Ms. Hobb has given a lot of thought to her world and characters. Dark as they are, they stand out like jewels on velvet.” (Romance Reviews Today)

“[D]elicate, vivid language . . . [a] fine example of how to avoid a middle-book slump.” (Booklist)

“All [of the stories] are beautifully written parables, expressing a clear message but managing not to be too offensively preachy about it.…You don’t have to be a fan of either of the author’s identities to enjoy this collection—but you may become one.” (Kirkus Reviews on THE INHERITANCE)

“An engaging, entertaining introduction to both sides of the author’s work.” (Booklist (starred review) on THE INHERITANCE)

“Taken as a whole, the two voices represented here provide a richly textured body of work from one of the genre’s most accomplished writers. VERDICT Fans of both Lindholm and Hobb will appreciate the diversity of this one-woman showcase.” (Library Journal on THE INHERITANCE)

“A priceless reading experience.” (Paul Goat Allen on THE INHERITANCE)

“One author, two pseudonyms, and a wonderful collection of short stories…an exciting addition to the fantasy genre. Her stories are fresh and surprising as she weaves in subtle twists.” (Portland Book Review on THE INHERITANCE)

From the Back Cover

A treasure trove of tales from a master storyteller—the first to feature works written under both her pseudonyms, Robin Hobb and Megan Lindholm . . .

The Inheritance

Before she became an acclaimed New York Times bestselling author, Robin Hobb received resounding critical praise for work written under the name Megan Lindholm. Though they spring from the same imagination, Hobb and Lindholm are separate, diverse identities, each with her own unique style and perspective.

The Inheritance celebrates the boundless vision of Hobb and Lindholm, bringing together for the first time classic and new short works from both names. The collection is comprised of three generous offerings from Robin Hobb, including the title story, which makes its U.S. debut here, and a brand-new tale, "Cat's Meat." Megan Lindholm contributes her Hugo and Nebula Award finalist "A Touch of Lavender" and Nebula finalist "Silver Lady and the Fortyish Man," as well as several classic and new gems.

Each piece is prefaced by a brief yet informative author's note, offering insight into each story's genesis. Fascinating, compelling, and wonderfully entertaining, The Inheritance reveals the full spectrum of skill and talent of one of the world's finest fantasy writers.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager; Original edition (May 3, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061561649
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061561641
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #258,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By B. Capossere TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 9, 2011
Format: Paperback
The Inheritance and Other Stories, by Megan Lindholm, offers up one-stop shopping, collecting into one volume three stories by her pseudonym Robin Hobb and seven by her other pseudonym, Megan Lindholm. There's no doubt these are two different authors, despite being the same person, and so there is a good mix of style and genre here. I'm a huge Hobb fan, believing her work to be substantive and subtle with world-class characterization and plotting, and so I was pleased to see the Hobb stories set in one my favorite all-time worlds--that of the Liveship Traders/Rain Wilds. I hadn't ever read her Lindholm works though I'd always been curious. Unfortunately, I turned out to be much more a Hobbs fan than a Lindholm fan, and though one of her Lindholm stories was one of my favorites in the book, I found myself wishing the balance between the authors had been reversed (though in terms of pages they are roughly equal as the Hobb stories are much longer) And, as is almost always my experience with anthologies, the overall reaction is muddy, with the stories varying greatly in enjoyment level.

The first story is "A Touch of Lavender," which was a finalist for both the Hugo and Nebula, and for good reason. It was, I thought, by far the stand out of the Lindholm stories. It's told from the pov of a young boy named Billy and is set in a world where aliens have come to Earth (their reasons are somewhat foggy at first) and are given govt. benefits in hope of learning the secret of interstellar travel. But the preferential treatment, as well as plain old xenophobia also makes them the target of abuse and resentment, along with humans that get too friendly with them.
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I don't know whether to praise the service or the story--but for 49 cents it is impossible to go wrong. Fans of Robin Hobb's Farseer and Bingtown Traders novels who read short fiction (and even those who don't generally like short stories might want to take a look) this is a must-read. "The Inheritance" tells the tale of a young woman who is short-changed after a relative's death--or so it would seem. What little she does receive opens her eyes to possibilities she'd never imagined for herself. Hobbs/Lindholm demonstrates consummate craft in the short form--the main danger here is you'll find yourself diving back into the Bingtown traders books to slake a larger thirst awakened by this short story. It is impossible to review a story further without giving too much away (unlike a novel review, the source text is so slim there's very little one can say without spoiling the experience for others), so I commend old Hobb hands to read this. For those wishing a quick first taste, beware--Hobb is not by accident one of fantasy's leading lights. There could be whole novels of reading ahead for you.
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Format: Paperback
I read this book fairly quickly. The 'Megan Lindholm' short stories were intriguing sci-fi/alternate world stuff, and I'm tempted to read the rest of her work under this pseudonym now that I've had a taste of it.

The Robin Hobb stories were more interesting to me, because they return to the worlds of her other novels, and expand a bit on life in that universe.

I do prefer longer-format stories, so that may account for some of my preference for the Robin Hobb works. Shorter works tend to leave me wanting more, in a frustrated way. Why create such intriguing worlds, only to move on so quickly?

I'd say they're worth a look whether or not you've read any of the Robin Hobb novels, but I'm not sure these are the best introduction to that universe. I'd suggest total newbies start with the initial titles in any of her trilogies.
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"The Inheritance" isn't terrible, but it isn't very good, either. If you're in search of Robin Hobb's usual excellent work, look elsewhere.

There are good things about this story. It only costs 49 cents. It prints out to 15 standard typed pages (not 24) of 12 pt. Times New Roman, including a separate page for the Author Spotlight. In that space, Hobbs includes two interwoven stories. The piece is entertaining enough; there's no temptation to set it down.

Unfortunately, that's about all I can say in its favor. Characterization is normally one of Hobb's strong suits, but it suffers here. The main character of the framework story never caught me as a personality, and her development feels forced. We see hints of a strongly described character in the mini-story, but she can't develop in the little space she has. In both cases, the deep motivations I loved in Hobb's trilogies are missing or glossed over. So are the memorable thematic elements. There is a flash of moral ambivalence, akin to FitzChivalry's many "what have I done?" moments (Farseer trilogy, Tawny Man trilogy), but the touch of complexity gets swept away too cleanly. In short, "The Inheritance" offers little of the delicious storytelling I have come to expect from Hobb.

Finally, the editing is terrible. This looks like a draft, not a finished piece of work. There are quite a few minor errors strewn throughout, including inconsistent capitalization and confusing pronoun usage. There is also a major error -- the character initally named "Woharth" becomes "Howarth" midstream with no explanation. Since customers pay 49 cents for the privilege of reading this story, it would have been nice if an editor had looked it over to catch and correct mistakes of this sort.
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