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The Armor of Light (1988)

de Melissa Scott, Lisa Barnett (Autor)

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» Mira també 7 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 6 (següent | mostra-les totes)
One of my very favorite historical fantasy books ever. ( )
  tigerb | Apr 7, 2016 |
In this alternate history tale, Sir Philip Sidney didn't die at the Battle of Zutphen, and is instead Queen Elizabeth's champion. He is sent to Scotland to defend King James from Bothwell's witchcraft. With him comes Kit Marlowe, whose life he saved in 1593 and who has continued to spy for Walsingham. Five hundred pages later, Sidney and Marlowe defeat Bothwell using some bible verses. The writing is so repetitive, the magic so deus ex machina, that I could barely finish this.

The authors clearly know the Elizabethan period very well, but this is not a good novel. The plot is very basic, the plot beats poorly paced, and the characters almost indistinguishable. The narration switches point-of-view frequently, with no signal and to no real purpose, since everyone has the same basic mindset. The only character who stands out at all is Marlowe, mostly because he can't look at a young man without thinking about fucking him. It's tiresome. Equally unnecessary are the side plots featuring Frances Sidney and the players. The players consume a good hundred pages at least, but their point in the novel is obscure. Frances does even less. She gets word that her husband will be attacked by witches, so she creates a convoluted plot to get Queen Elizabeth to speak with her in order to get permission to ride all the way to Scotland with Raleigh in tow (no reason this historical figure should be included either). I have no idea why she felt the need to do this, since the ENTIRE REASON Sidney is in Scotland in the first place is to defend against witches' attacks. He already knows he'll be a target; Frances's hundred-odd pages of plot to warn him are completely superfluous. But then, this book in general feels like it's made entirely out of padding, like the writers really just wanted to play dolls with their favorite historical personages (the descriptions of their clothes are seemingly endless) and they inserted a bare little plot at odd intervals to maintain the illusion that this is an actual story. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
I discovered this book in its first printing, and The Armor of Light forever lit my interest in historical fantasy. Together, Melissa Scott and Lisa Barnett pulled off a triple-crown performance by writing an Elizabethan Age fantasy novel in which the magic felt real and period-specific, the historical details, right down to the proper descriptions for clothing and the habits of the day, felt right and natural, and the story, really about the shaping of a king, took flight on the wings of great personal dramas.

There is so much fun to be had in this book (the scene where Mephistopheles tempts Christopher Marlow is priceless), and the intrigue and political maneuverings will be enough for anybody who likes the historical in historical fantasy. The co-authors do a good enough job on the characters that even readers completely unfamiliar with most of the dramatis personae will enjoy getting to know them. While it is a little slow in places, the layered plotting and personal dramas demand a leisurely pace, and there is plenty of conflict and danger to carry it along. The magic is Elizabethan magic, depending on virtues and correspondences and inseparable from the magical and religious practices of the day. It is a treat on all levels.

The full review can be found on my blog, Marion Harmon, A Writer in Vegas. ( )
1 vota M.G.Harmon | Jun 10, 2011 |
This is alternative history/fantasy novel in which both Sir Philip Sidney and Christopher Marlowe didn't die when they died in our world; instead, they end up in Scotland to solve King James's problems with someone's use of magic. What's not to love about it? I liked both Sidney and Marlowe, liked the story and liked the way magic was part of their world. ( )
  queen_ypolita | Mar 31, 2010 |
This is mildly interesting - the characters are great, but unfortunately it was written by someone (someones) who knew a _lot_ about that era. As I don't, there are a lot of in-jokes that I can see are references to _something_ but I haven't a clue what. Some of the relationships, too, are based on data I don't have. I wonder if they wrote another book before this one, or if it's all what-really-happened? Not interested enough to go find out.

Sir Robert Carey is the only one who's managed to lure me into truly enjoying Elizabethan times...and then, mostly because he wasn't at court (the last book in that series (by P.F. Chisholm) is the least interesting, for exactly the same reasons this one isn't).

The magic is insufficiently detailed to draw me in as a technical interest, the politics are both extremely murky and sitting center stage front for 90% of the book...actually, the fact that I enjoyed it as much as I did (and that this is my second reading) is a testimonial to the writing skills of the authors. ( )
  jjmcgaffey | Jun 26, 2008 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Melissa Scottautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Barnett, LisaAutorautor principaltotes les edicionsconfirmat
Carey, ElisabethEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat

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