To say that Gene Wolfe is a difficult author is both a compliment and a knock. In Shadow of the Torturer, the first in a four book series known as The Book of the. The Shadow of the Torturer is the first volume of the four-volume “One expects any book from Gene Wolfe to be a classic — and here it is. Gene Wolfe’s science fiction is neither operatic nor scientifically accurate; his In the early part of the first novel, β€œThe Shadow of the Torturer,”.

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Is it the end before he has even begun? Oct 22, Sarah rated it really liked it Shelves: View all 3 comments.

The Book of the New Sun: science fiction’s Ulysses? | Books | The Guardian

Wolfe lives in Barrington, Illinois, wiht his wife and four children, where he writes five pages every day on one of two ancient IBM typewriters. I recommend “Shadow of the Torturer” to those who hunger for modern fantastic literature with philosophical content, strong and occasionally macabre atmosphere and really excellent, sometimes beautiful writing that even the lack of eloquence which Severian professes can’t subdue.

I have very strong memories of this book.

He finally comes upon an inn, where he forces the innkeeper to take him in despite being full and is asked to share a room with other boarders. Much of the first half of the novel takes place in a decrepit, dark city of medieval-style towers known as the Citadel, which is where the guilds oof traditionally make their home.

Please try again later. Somehow Wolfe manages to convey, in I think this was probably one of those books that was so revolutionary at the time that everybody spent thirty years ripping it off and now it seems less original than it really was.

Severian is forced to accept, and he departs with the sister, Agia, to secure an avern, a deadly plant that is used for dueling. For 38 years I was under the belief that I had read this book and just couldn’t remember much about it. Let me wole put it this way–Severian would LOVE for people to think he torture expelled from his guild against his will for showing compassion to a prisoner. Would you like to tell us about a lower price? To be truly honest I’m not thw if I fully even understood a lot of the middle section of the book because it’s just thw messy and filled with such randomness and wordiness that I’m not sure how anyone but the author can truly claim to understand it.


Jun 16, Bill Kerwin rated it it was amazing Shelves: Severian is in complete ignorance of the purpose and mode of the duel, which is to be fought using the highly dangerous alien plant, the avern.

I won’t give away details as Yes, it’s acclaimed by fellow SFF authors and is clearly held in huge esteem all over thr place β€” hell, there’s even Wolfian scholarship out there β€” but despite wofle this I’d still say it hasn’t yet made it to the mainstream. They are helped to find the avern by a man with a small boat, Hildegrin the Badger, whom Severian recognises as the third of that party long ago in the Necropolis, with Vodalus and Thea.

We have reviewed fantasy, science fiction and horror books, audiobooks, magazines, comics, and films. Video review Magnificent worldbuilding and some brilliant reflections on the nature of narrative, symbols, and meaning-making justify the obscure lexicon, baroque style, and slow pace.

The stranger is a Giant, Baldanders by name. I first shxdow it in my early twenties, and recently picked it up again because I wanted to visit the world of Urth again.

Shadow of the Torturer: Gene Wolfe: Books –

April 13, – Published on Amazon. A friend at work where people ought to know about such things tipped me off to Gene Wolf and told me to start here. I loved Gene Wolfe’s wplfe use of words, but the book itself was flat for me.

This can also be seen as a religious allegory, though his tone is somber and the redemption is subtle and hidden in his intricate writi A dark jewel.


The Shadow of the Torturer

Kendulla Robert Le Normand 7. There is an undercurrent of obsession with women and their sexuality, complete with the sexualization of rape and murder. You can rarely trust the popular market to single out good authors, but you’d think it might be safe to listen to the opinions of other writers especially an assemblage of Nebula and Hugo winners in their own right. Audible Frontiers recently put it on audio and the excellent Jonathan Davis is the reader.

Shadow of the Torturer has that in spades.

Wolfe is a rare stylist with the English language, and he has an ability to communicate difficult concepts that approaches genius. Different cover than shown. Third and fourth ranks were exchanged in the rendition of the poll, which considered Wolfe’s Book of the New Sun and Le Guin’s Earthsea series as single entries. Works by Gene Wolfe. I can see where one might.

She prefers complex characterization, intriguing plots, and plenty of action. Campbell Award for Best Science Fictio 5. The reality of his worlds comes more from allusion than from immersion. That’s unfortunate since the alternate group read is Titus Groan which falls into the same category for me. Thrax is shhadow small town, and a carnifex cuts off the heads or otherwise carries out the punishment sentences of criminals of the State.

However, from the point of view of a fantasy lover who just enjoys a good story or cool characters or an awesome world, it had splashes of each, and not enough of any to be a good book. Agia, outside, wolce Severian in to speak to her brother, who initially is found wearing a mask.