Blood of Amber is the seventh book of The Chronicles of Amber; an epic fantasy series written by six-time Hugo Award winning and three-time Nebula Award winning author, Roger Zelazny.
The ten books that make up the series are told in two story arcs: The Corwin Cycle and the Merlin Cycle.
Narrator Wil Wheaton, who won the 2012 Audie Award for his engaging performance of Fuzzy Nation, brings this classic series to a stunning close by giving voice to Merlin, Corwin’s son, in the final five books of the series.
Pursued by a fiendish enemy, Merle must battle through an intricate web of vengeance and murder that threatens more than the San Francisco Bay area. For Merle Corey of California is also Merlin, son of Corwin, vanished Prince of Amber; and the forces, seeking to destroy the royal house, have unleashed sorceries that can strike anywhere, especially at the very heart of Amber.
©1986 The Amber Corporation (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
Well maybe not he's greatest work but a great little read. A great continuation of the Amber story.
The amber universe
The whole think
Takes me to my happy place :)
Not all Zelazny book work in audio form but this one work great. The way he writes the Amber books makes it easy to to follow the audio.
Professional Computer Janitor
I have both the random house Mr. Zelazny narrated version AND the audible frontiers one with Mr. Wil Wheaton. The SFX that random house put in the background are extremely distracting and at points I had to turn it off. Seriously a high pitch screech for a LARGE portion of a book drove me to buy a 'different version' (this one) and it is far far superior. I don't blame Mr Zelazny for this but Random Houses Audio wing.
Merle Corey - main protaganist is a deeper character than his father Corwin was in the novels.
Merle - really I need 15 words to give a one word answer? Kind of silly if you ask me.
I've read and reread the series and have listened multiple times to the RH version, I use these for a long (28 mile one way) commute in Silicon Valley.
Avid Reader and Listener. Favorite Genres are Fantasy, Science Fiction, Bios, Mystery, and books on Leadership. Chile of the 70s.
If I were forced to rank "Blood of Amber" on a scale of one to ten, I would say it is a solid six. The difficulty I have with it is the length. I enjoy a more comprehensive listen, and would easily rank the series a Ten of Ten where all the Amber books combined into as single reading.
I found Wil Wheaton's performance very easy to listen too. I have read the books in the past and Wheaton's vocal flavoring of the characters was in line with my own internal imaginings, which made the performance very entertaining for me.
I listen to audiobooks regularly. I have a special place in my heart for Roger Zelazny as he was the first science fiction author I ever read. I tore into his stories of Amber with a great amount of zeal as a young man. The premise of shaping reality by mere force of will through infinite possibility was so enticing to me. The series backdrop is so well thought out that it allows for anything to happen, any plot to evolve any twist to take root. Roger Zelazny masterfully takes advantage of this in all of his Amber books. The story elements of family relations, politics, the romance of combat by blade, cunning and force of intellect. The underlying themes of balance in all things, Chaos and Order, Good and Evil, Right and Wrong, these books are all simply outstanding.
"To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life.” -- Somerset Maugham
Don't start reading with this book! Go back and start with the Trumps of Doom (the first in this second series) or ALL THE WAY back to the beginning of the first Chronicles of Amber, Nine Princes in Amber. (Though if you do the latter, I'll have to recommend reading it in print. The audiobook narrator is ... in a word ... awful. I'm still hoping Audible will pay Wil Wheaton to go back and re-record the first series!)
Merlin is in some ways a more interesting character than Corwin, though his somewhat forced naïveté is off-putting. (As I mentioned in my review of the last book, just hold on a bit longer. It starts getting better in book 3, and books 4 and 5 are real fun.) In this book we get a few good bits:
• More insights into Logrus magic (my favorite parts)
• New Amberites are uncovered
• The political landscape and plot are revealed
Oddly, a huge amount of the book is just the author recapping earlier events and telling you stuff through the medium of conversations: Merle and Luke, Merle and Caine's wife (or is she?), Merle and a hermit above the Keep of the Four Winds. It feels like a weak gumshoe novel in a lot of ways - investigative interviews punctuated by someone getting beat up.
I really have wanted to delve into the Amber books after beginning them years ago. But they are over before you know it or have a chance to relate to the characters. An omnibus offering would be welcome. But these are worth neither the price nor the credit. I keep buying them, wanting the rest of the story, and being frustrated at how little I got.
Douglas R. Pratt is an author and audiobook narrator who lives on a nature preserve near Niagara Falls.
The second series of 5 Amber novels adds immensely to the depth of Amber as a world. The character of Merlin is excellent, a computer geek trained as a sorcerer...what's the difference? Wil Wheaton performs the voices perfectly.
Alessandro Juliani, who narrated the first half of the series, from Corwin's pov, did a really good job of capturing the tone and attitude of Zelazny's writing.
Wil Wheaton, narrating the books from the pov of Merlin, son of Corwin, pick that up and also does a great job. I never have trouble distinguishing which character is speaking at any given moment, he remembers inflections and accents that he gives bit parts and keeps them consistent.
Zelzany's writing is always an interesting mix of whimsical, edgy, and inventive. Sometimes the descriptions of landscapes go on and on, but by and large this is a very enjoyable and original series.
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