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Summer Tree, The: Book One of the Fionavar Tapestry Paperback – April 1, 2001
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From the Back Cover
And in a marvelous land of men and dwarves, of wizards and gods--and of the Unraveller and his minions of Darkness--Kimberly, Dave, Jennifer, Kevin, and Paul discovered who they were truly meant to be. For the five were a long-awaited part of the pattern known as the Fionavar Tapestry, and only if they accepted their destiny would the armies of the Light stand any chance of surviving when the Unraveller unleashed his wrath upon the world. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The language is frequently lyrical, far above the usual standard for fantasy writing; "words more strung with fire", to use one of Kay's own phrases, than any but the likes of, say, Bradbury's. The whole really IS a tapestry; a complex and intricate interweaving of different characters, plot strands, and fantasy elements. And so tightly and carefully woven that it's unbelievable - half a sentence in one book can subtly foreshadow a major event in another book three hundred pages later - yet it's never slow, as I'd expect given all the connections and resonances. You just don't normally find this level of plaited storytelling, even in the endless 300 pound series.
Obviously I was blown away by this trilogy - will probably read it every few years for life - but many of the Amazon reviews were negative and I'd like to address some of the comments. First, a number of the reviewers seemed to be giving Kay low marks mostly because he hadn't written some other book. For instance, some would have preferred a book in which all the characters came from the one world, not some from Fionavar and some from earth. Or some would have preferred a book that was more like Tolkien, or less like Tolkien, etc. I'd say that these are simply valid alternate choices as to the form, and he should be judged on the job he did, not downgraded because he didn't write another book entirely.
A few reviewers thought the plot cliche or even PREDICTABLE.Read more ›
Kim, Jennifer, Paul, Dave, and Kevin are friends. They attend the same college in Toronto. And, on one extremely fateful night, they attend the same lecture by a renowned professor. Dr. Marcus even invites them back to his home after the lecture, and that is approximately where things begin to run off the rails. It turns out Dr. Marcus is in fact a mage from another world known as Fionavar. Fionavar is the original world, Dr. Marcus (or rather Loren Silvercloak) informs them, upon which all other worlds (including Earth) are based.Read more ›
My first introduction to Kay was the stand-alone novel, Tigana. It took me a while to really get into Tigana, but I really started to appreciate Kay's eloquent style, fleshed out characters and whit in dialogue and plot development. It wasn't until after I finished Tigana and thought about it that I realized how great of a book it is. I decided that before going on to read the rest of his works, I had better read Fianovar. I didn't quite find the same reading experience here.
While the characters in Tigana are well thought and believable, those in the Summer Tree are quite the opposite. The reader is given the names of our five heroes right from the get go but Kay doesn't feel that it's necessary to really introduce any of them. He goes on about these five as if you should already know them. Soon comes the mage, Loren, who will take them into Fianovar. This part I found laughable, as only one of the characters really seems to question the sense of this mage appearing out of nowhere and taking them to another world. The other four follow Loren blissfully into Fianovar and seem to go on once they get there as if nothing had really happened. Only on a few occasions do these four characters reference their own world, Earth, in comparison to this new fantastic world that they seem to accept so easily.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Here is book one of a truly wondrous, breathtaking and magical fantasy trilogy that takes place partly in our world when students are taken to an alternate dimension, a world that... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Joseph P. Bonadonna
Warning: there may be spoilers ahead.
The Fionavar Tapestry is a work of sublime beauty. I am a lover of great prose, poetic prose, elegant prose; and that is why I love... Read more
Kay's writing and world-building (or should I say judicious borrowing from various fantasy classics) carried me through this book and half of the next until I had to quit. Read morePublished 21 days ago by cheezwizardofoz
The best explanation I've read so far for the existence of evil in the world. Beautifully written, and engaging.Published 3 months ago by Jessica Quinn
This novel is often thought to be Kay's weakest and that makes sense given the fact that this was his first published novel. Still, it's a pretty good book. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Alex Tate
Entertaining, classic high fantasy adventure. I will read the others in the series.Published 5 months ago by Christian Forrest
Guy Gavriel Kay's Fionavar Tapestry is often compared to Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, but in language, tone, theme and in fact general setup, it has always struck me as more like... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Amazon Customer