Henry Kuttner was a pioneer with this kind of story which mixes science fiction and fantasy. As such, he had great influence on writers to come. Marion Zimmer Bradley is one of many authors who have cited Kuttner as an influence. Her novel, The Bloody Sun is dedicated to him. Roger Zelazny stated that The Dark World influenced his famous Amber series. Richard Matheson dedicated his 1954 novel I Am Legend to Kuttner, and thanked him for his help and encouragement. Ray Bradbury said that Kuttner actually wrote the last 300 words of Bradbury's first horror story, "The Candle." Bradbury also referred to Kuttner as a neglected master and a "pomegranate writer: popping with seeds - full of ideas."
In this story, World War II veteran Edward Bond, is a fighter pilot recuperating from a plane crash. Suddenly his life takes a strange turn into weirdness. He steps through a portal into a world of magic and swordplay that is terrible but somehow hauntingly familiar. He meets a giant wolf, a red witch, and something called the "need-fire." In this strange Dark World, Bond finds himself opposed to the dread lord Ganelon and his terrible army of werewolves, wizards, and witches. However all is not as it seems in this shadowy mirror of the real world, and Bond discovers that a part of him feels more at home here than he ever did in the real world.
How could the performance have been better?
Different narrator would be a plus. John Lee would have done indescribably better.
Any additional comments?
I first read this book as a kid many years ago. A true classic of the fantasy genre, it captivated me at the time. To the date, I still believe it to be imaginative and magical in a distinctive and alluring way.
However, narration by Jim Roberts is outright awful: the overall rhythm is way off, his enunciation is only marginally better than that of a speech simulator of the late 90s, he appears to disregard punctuation (or invents his own), and too often he fails to put the right emphasis in a sentence or a paragraph, treating words as if they were written on separate note cards instead of complete sentences. Overall, the narration sounds annoyingly unnatural.
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