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Lord of Light (1967)

de Roger Zelazny

Altres autors: Mira la secció altres autors.

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
4,6751031,928 (4.03)161
Imagine a distant world where gods walk as men, but wield vast and hidden powers. Here they have made the stage on which they build a subtle pattern of alliance, love, and deadly enmity. Are they truly immortal? Who are these gods who rule the destiny of a teeming world? Their names include Brahma, Kali, Krishna and also he who was called Buddha, the Lord of Light, but who now prefers to be known simply as Sam. The gradual unfolding of the story -- how the colonization of another planet became a re-enactment of Eastern mythology -- is one of the great imaginative feats of modern science fiction.… (més)
Afegit fa poc perSanjive, biblioteca privada, Scottysteensma, nickrowe, kristiederuiter, Pxan02, Windyone1, ArchStanton
  1. 61
    The Lathe of Heaven de Ursula K. Le Guin (storyjunkie)
    storyjunkie: Both books carry a philosophical weight to their world-saving. A similar atmosphere to their protagonists, worlds, and occupancy of a more soul-searching lot in the science fiction spectrum make them nicely complementary to each other.
  2. 20
    Creatures of Light and Darkness de Roger Zelazny (PMaranci)
    PMaranci: Another award-winning novel by Roger Zelazny in which science fiction and classic Earth mythology intertwine.
  3. 20
    La mà esquerra de la foscor de Ursula K. Le Guin (WildMaggie)
  4. 00
    The Quantum Thief de Hannu Rajaniemi (Lucy_Skywalker)
  5. 11
    The Years of Rice and Salt de Kim Stanley Robinson (LamontCranston)
  6. 00
    Gather, Darkness! de Fritz Leiber Jr. (LamontCranston)
    LamontCranston: The same premise of advanced science mimicking religion
  7. 00
    Shield de Poul Anderson (MinaKelly)
  8. 00
    WebMage de Kelly McCullough (aqualectrix)
  9. 00
    Cybermancy de Kelly McCullough (aqualectrix)
  10. 12
    Silverlock de John Myers Myers (boneslv)
    boneslv: It also has many famous literary characters in it.
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» Mira també 161 mencions

Anglès (101)  Castellà (1)  Italià (1)  Totes les llengües (103)
Es mostren 1-5 de 103 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Delightful and light, [puns intended].
What is missing in all prior reviews, is that the movie script for "Lord of Light" was purchased by the CIA and renamed "Argo." ( )
  DromJohn | May 13, 2022 |
Utterly brilliant. SF meets hinduism, with buddha as the hero. Work that out. ( )
  hierogrammate | Jan 31, 2022 |
September 24, 2017
This is the first Roger Zelazny book that I've attempted. It'd been on my to-read list for a long time, and I cannot recall why I chose this particular book over any of his others. I don't know what I was expecting, but I'm at 14% (Start of Chapter 2), and I can't take much more of the 60's-vibe mysticism. I just labored my way through Dune, and I'm just not up for reading another book which is probably only enjoyable while the reader is high.
  KrakenTamer | Oct 23, 2021 |
Realistic human characters acting as gods. Style is similar to translations of Hindu tales I've read. Poetic but with anachronisms throne in that are amusing. Takes getting used to in the first few pages but then makes sense. Episodic, takes place over a long period of time. Overall, enjoyable and entertaining. Well done. ( )
  mgplavin | Oct 3, 2021 |
“Lord of Light” was published in 1967, won the Hugo in 1968, and is often considered a science fiction masterwork. More than once, I have seen it referred to as a top ten all time science fiction novel and many people consider it their favorite science fiction book. I believe it to be important, influencing writers such as George R. R. Martin and John C. Wright. I did not enjoy the book, finding it difficult to follow and the story failed to ever come alive in my head. There is much to appreciate, and maybe a second read would be more fruitful, but I never cared about the characters and honestly had to force myself to complete it.

Let’s start with the positive. The book has an excellent premise. Humans have migrated to another world and many of the original crew (call them Firsts), have not only discovered a technology that allows them to be immortal through reincarnation, but also have materially become gods. They developed near magical abilities in order to fight off and eventually imprison the original inhabitants (beings of pure energy). Their descendants now live in a near medieval society worshiping the Firsts in the form of Hindu gods. The gods ultimately control the process of reincarnation and force the population into a mind scan at the age of 60 to determine their reincarnation result. People that are found unworthy (largely in serving the gods) may return in diseased bodies or even as animals such as primates or dogs. The plot follows the main character, named Sam, who embraces Buddhism over Hinduism, and looks to give the population the same technology the gods enjoy. The story is complex and nuanced. Fight scenes are very well written.

So, what did I dislike? To begin there is a massive amount of exposition and info dumps. I guess these are somewhat necessary due to the scale of the story, both in term of time, as well as world building. But still, I couldn’t go a chapter without feeling like I was constantly being reminded that this was a story, I almost never lost myself in the characters and the story. The prose often seems intentionally obscure. Characters have many names and it’s likely that many subtle references around Hindu and Buddhism were lost on me. We begin with a flashback, that’s very thinly introduced. The story meanders and for me, fails to find any strong buildup of tension or climax.

I must document that I read this during the beginning of the Covid 19 Global Pandemic. It’s a time where I’m highly distracted and struggling to stay positive, which likely influences my impressions of this work. As I said, a reread in the future may change my viewpoint, however, at this point in time, I’m giving it 3.5 stars round up to 4 for the strong premise and cultural influences it created. Imaginative and epic in scope, but also murky, and too unfocused for my tastes. ( )
  Kevin_A_Kuhn | Aug 23, 2021 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 103 (següent | mostra-les totes)
As opening lines of novels go, Lord of Light's are among the best I've ever read, and based on how many people have quoted them to me in the last few weeks, the best a lot of you have ever read, too. In twenty-five words, they capture the best-loved aspects of the book — the seamless blend of antiquated cadence and insouciant modern vernacular, of modest sincerity and dry humor — and more, they tell us, in part, what the story is about.
afegit per lorax | editaio9, Josh Wimmer (May 9, 2010)
 
Fantasy disguised as science fiction disguised as fantasy: Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light
afegit per sturlington | editaTor.com, Jo Walton (Nov 9, 2009)
 

» Afegeix-hi altres autors (34 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Zelazny, Rogerautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Goodfellow, PeterAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Jensen, BruceAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Johnson, MichaelAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Martin, George R. R.Epílegautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Roberts, AdamIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Stone, StevenAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Walotsky, RonAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
White, TimAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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To Dannie Plachta,
of friendship, wisdom, soma.
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It is said that fifty-three years after his liberation he returned from the Golden Cloud to take up once again the gauntlet of Heaven, to oppose the Order of Life and the gods who ordained it so.
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Names are not important... To speak is to name names, but to speak is not important. A thing happens once that has never happened before. Seeing it, a man looks upon reality. He cannot tell others what he has seen. Others wish to know, however, so they question him saying, 'What is it like, this thing you have seen?' So he tries to tell them. Perhaps he has seen the very first fire in the world. He tells them, 'It is red, like a poppy, but through it dance other colors. It has no form, like water, flowing everywhere. It is warm, like the sun of summer, only warmer. It exists for a time upon a piece of wood, and then the wood is gone, as though it were eaten, leaving behind that which is black and can be sifted like sand. When the wood is gone, it too is gone.' Therefore, the hearers must think reality is like a poppy, like water, like the sun, like that which eats and excretes. They think it is like to anything that they are told it is like by the man who has known it. But they have not looked upon fire. They cannot really know it. They can only know of it. But fire comes again into the world, many times. More men look upon fire. After a time, fire is as common as grass and clouds and the air they breathe. They see that, while it is like a poppy, it is not a poppy, while it is like water, it is not water, while it is like the sun, it is not the sun, and while it is like that which eats and passes wastes, it is not that which eats and passes wastes, but something different from each of these apart or all of these together. So they look upon this new thing and they make a new word to call it. They call it 'fire.'"If they come upon one who still has not seen it and they speak to him of fire, he does not know what they mean. So they, in turn, fall back upon telling him what fire is like. 'As they do so, they know from their own experience that what they are telling him is not the truth, but only a part of it. They know that this man will never know reality from their words, though all the words in the world are theirs to use. He must look upon the fire, smell of it, warm his hands by it, stare into its heart, or remain forever ignorant. Therefore, 'fire' does not matter, 'earth' and 'air' and 'water' do not matter. 'I' do not matter. No word matters. But man forgets reality and remembers words. The more words he remembers, the cleverer do his fellows esteem him. He looks upon the great transformations of the world, but he does not see them as they were seen when man looked upon reality for the first time. Their names come to his lips and he smiles as he tastes them, thinking he knows them in the naming. The thing that has never happened before is still happening. It is still a miracle. The great burning blossom squats, flowing, upon the limb of the world, excreting the ash of the world, and being none of these things I have named and at the same time all of them, and this is reality — the Nameless.
I have many names, and none of them matter.
It is said that fifty-three years after his liberation he returned from the Golden Cloud, to take up once again the gauntlet of Heaven, to oppose the Order of Life and the gods who ordained it so. His followers had prayed for his return, though their prayers were sin. Prayer should not trouble one who has gone on to Nirvana, no matter what the circumstances of his going. The wearers of the saffron robe prayed, however, that He of the Sword, Manjusri, should come again among them, The Boddhisatva is said to have heard...
His followers called him Mahasamatman and said he was a god. He preferred to drop the Maha- and the -atman, and called himself Sam. He never claimed to be a god. But then, he never claimed not to be a god. Circumstances being what they were, neither admission could be of any benefit. Silence, though, could.
It was in the days of the rains that their prayers went up, not from the fingering of knotted prayer cords or the spinning of prayer wheels, but from the great pray-machine in the monastery of Ratri, goddess of the Night.
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Imagine a distant world where gods walk as men, but wield vast and hidden powers. Here they have made the stage on which they build a subtle pattern of alliance, love, and deadly enmity. Are they truly immortal? Who are these gods who rule the destiny of a teeming world? Their names include Brahma, Kali, Krishna and also he who was called Buddha, the Lord of Light, but who now prefers to be known simply as Sam. The gradual unfolding of the story -- how the colonization of another planet became a re-enactment of Eastern mythology -- is one of the great imaginative feats of modern science fiction.

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