This is a series that comes along once in a lifetime. By far the best-written fantasy series (hell, ANY series) I have had the pleasure of reading in a long time. Gene Wolfe has an incredible touch with storytelling and his writing is inspired and full of life. I never once felt like his world had outgrown his ability to keep it within his grasp. Answers and explanations are unfurled to the reader slowly and deliberately. Half of the fun of the series is building in your mind's eye the alien world that's so much like our own, yet differs in so many ways. Wolfe treats the reader with respect and doesn't simply tell you about Urth, he pulls back the curtain and lets you see for yourself.