• Rhialto the Marvellous

  • By: Jack Vance
  • Narrated by: Arthur Morey
  • Length: 8 hrs and 10 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (153 ratings)

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Rhialto the Marvellous

By: Jack Vance
Narrated by: Arthur Morey
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Publisher's Summary

In the interlocking Tales of the Dying Earth Vance explores the world at the end of time when sun is guttering. Light itself is different and Vance’s landscapes —described in language that is lyrical, seductive, and partly self-invented —are wild and surreal, full of opportunity and danger. On the Dying Earth, the rules of physics as we know them have been amended and replaced by magic. The laws of evolution have spun out creatures that are humanoid, hybrid, and often terrifying. The interpenetrating world of ghosts is equally fantastic. Religion and philosophy are diversified and rewoven into myriad theories, creeds, and dogmas. Human culture is archaic, vaguely medieval European or feudal Japanese. There is nothing quaint or allegorical about the Dying Earth stories. We’re not in Oz anymore, nor Narnia either. Voldemar is a harmless grouch compared to Chun the Unavoidable. Yet, at the same time, these works are as weirdly funny as the poetry and journals of Edward Lear or the fantastic yarns of Dr. Seuss.

©2010 Jack Vance (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Rhialto the Marvellous

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Dark and Wonderful

I'm new to Jack Vance, that gone through the entire dying Earth series in a rush. His writing is compelling, vivid, and mysterious. What a wonderful imagination!

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A refreshing change of pace

The Dying Earth series has quickly become one of my favorite settings. I greatly enjoy the misadventures of Cugel, but I found Rhialto to be a refreshing change of pace. If instead the author would have penned another Cugel story it may have worn out its welcome at this point. The different perspective made it feel as if I was visiting the setting again, but for the first time.
Side note, having recently read an Ian M Banks' novel I noticed certain similarities to these author's famous settings. You have to squint and not look too close, but Dying Earth almost feels like a dystopian end to Ian M Banks' utopia. The power to do the impossible with trivial effort. The constant search of pleasure and novelty. There are similar vibes even if they are on the complete opposite spectrum of -topias.

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You'll Regret It

Incoherent, rambling, and dull. Here you'll find all the pedantic verbosity of the earlier Dying Earth books without any of the wit, interesting characters, or world development that made them worthwhile. Particularly if you've enjoyed Vance's other books, do yourself the favour of avoiding this one.

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  • Mitchell
  • 11-07-22

Does it again!

The verbal sparing between the characters is always a joy with Jack Vance! The verbal sparing between the characters is always a joy with Jack Vance