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Nebula and World Fantasy awards-winner Wolfe's new novel-the first half of a massive epic-is a reminder that no one gets called a great writer without being first of all a great storyteller. This wonderful story is narrated by a teenage boy who wanders into a universe of interlocking magical realms. Transformed into a powerful man by an elf queen, he first calls himself a knight, Sir Able of the High Heart, then begins growing into that role. Wolfe doesn't just rearrange the cliches of sword and sorcery fiction; he recreates the genre. Sorcerous knowledge is important to Sir Able's survival, but muscle and steel count for a lot too, while sympathetic curiosity and self-awareness may be even more crucial. Though beautifully told, the novel is not exactly Wolfe Lite; much of the plot underlying the action remains obscure. Able realizes that there's a lot he doesn't comprehend, some of it because knowledge was stolen from him. He must gain (or regain) understanding of the worlds around him and of himself. In this respect, Wolfe's tale somewhat resembles the quest in David Lindsay's visionary masterpiece, A Voyage to Arcturus. Whatever its literary antecedents or its ultimate destination, however, this is a compelling, breathtaking achievement.
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That national treasure, Gene Wolfe, returns with the first of two novels about a teenage boy who wanders into what may be called Faerie. Remaining a teenager in mind, he finds himself in the mightily thewed body of the classic hero, from Roland to Conan to the protagonists of current quest fantasy. The tension between his consciousness and his new body may be satirically intended, and it certainly leads to satirical effects, but it also achieves much else as the boy-knight wanders about, encountering spells, monsters, evil races, heroic comrades, and lovable (also lovely) shape changers. During his wanderings, readers may occasionally wonder what is happening and, even more, where the story is going. But they will forgive Wolfe, for his wit, erudition, narrative technique, and consummate mastery of the language sweep all before them. Furthermore, serious medievalists will admire Wolfe's skill at scooping tropes out of medieval literature by the double handful and imaginatively blending them in this extraordinary book. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
I love this book! It's really smartly written (Gene Wolfe finally foregoing his love of obscure words) with a story that feels like it's swiftly moving along. Read morePublished on Oct. 3 2008 by Andy
Seriously team, I bought this book for the above good reviews. This book is a real bad read for several of the below reasons:
1. Read more
Having throughly mined out and made his own several SF ideas, Gene Wolfe turns to epic or heroic fantasy in this first half of a promised two-volume series. Read morePublished on April 12 2004 by Addison Phillips
I loved THE KNIGHT.
This may seem hardly surprising, given my well-documented worship of Wolfe's oeuvre, but the truth is that my expectations had been lower than usual this... Read more
Are you tired of generic fantasy? If you are, and you saw a book titled <b>The Knight</b> in your bookstore travels, would you pick it up? Maybe, but probably not. Read morePublished on April 10 2004 by David Roy
Wolfe's first major fantasy novel (split in two with the second half being the upcoming The Wizard) reads like a man reporting his dreams. Read morePublished on April 5 2004 by Richard J. Arndt
The book of the new sun is one of my favorite books of all time. I used to carry it around even when I wasn't reading it just to look at it sometimes and hold it. Read morePublished on March 26 2004
this book is very creative. I have never read a book in the format gene wolfe has written this novel in. I really enjoyed this book, but I just wish the ending was better.Published on March 22 2004 by AGraff