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le 19 avril 2015
I am pleased to finally have this book for my teenage grandaughter. I have the other two in the series and couldn't find this one until now.
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le 23 février 2015
this is stupid because we have to right 20 words for a review we can't just rate it and leave we just have to right a review.
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le 5 juillet 2014
The characterization in this book of the Cycle has matured, and we are treated to a closer relationship to all of our favorite characters. The characters take on real flesh and blood and consistent behavior and the imagination can have it's way. This book is for any age.
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Expecting a straightforward sequel to Ursula Le Guin's classic "A Wizard of Earthsea"? No, don't count on it.

Instead, the second book of Ursula Le Guin's Earthsea Cycle, "Tombs of Atuan," is very different from the first book. It features a different coming-of-age tale from Ged Sparrowhawk's, this time of a spirited girl who has been given everything except freedom -- a cold, claustrophobic tale that blossoms in Ged's light.

As a little child, Tenar was taken from her family by the priestesses, who said she was the reborn High Princess of the Nameless Ones, the dark, ruthless powers who are in the Tombs of Atuan. Her name is taken away and she was afterwards called Arha (which means that she was "eaten," spiritually), and she is raised in the cold, uninviting temple.

When Arha is fifteen, she finds that a wizard has somehow gained entrance to the massive mazelike Labyrinth, committing sacrilege and polluting the "center of darkness" with his staff's light. He's searching for half of a powerful ring; he has one half, she has the other. She takes the wizard Sparrowhawk prisoner, and for some reason doesn't want to kill him.

Instead she listens to his stories about dragons, magic and his home -- until a vengeful priestess learns that Arha is keeping the wizard alive. To escape horrible deaths, they must escape together from the Nameless Ones, and Tenar will be set free in more ways than one.

Ursula Le Guin's worldbuilding was masterful in the first book, and it's no less so in "Tombs of Atuan." The decayed, corrupted, darkness-obsessed religion and culture that Tenar is raised in seems very real. The only spot of warmth and life is Penthe, a childhood pal of Tenar's, who longs to get away from the temple and go live a normal, happy life.

Le Guin's writing is both spare and descriptive; she makes you feel like you know the characters with only a few pages. Her elegantly understated descriptions bring the grey, cold temple and tombs to life. Themes like religion, disbelief, loyalty, redemption, freedom, and enslavement are woven in, but not preachily.

However, the book suffers somewhat when Ged and Tenar are getting to know each other; even during a crisis, Ged spends a lot of time talking about his past and the Ring. It's less a conversation than an infodump.

Despite that, the relationship between Tenar and Ged is the centerpiece of the book. At first they are enemies, then gradually grow to trust one another even though rationally neither one should. Tenar is a strong, brave, slightly immature girl whose spirit has been kept enslaved to the Nameless Ones, and Ged is the brave, gentle, strong wizard we got to know in "Wizard."

The second book of the Earthsea cycle, while not as strong as the first, is still a compelling book. The dark, tense "Tombs of Atuan" remains a modern fantasy classic -- and does it ever deserve it.
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Out of all the sci-fi/fantasy works she has produced, Ursula Le Guin's first Earthsea trilogy is undeniably the crown jewel.

And "The Farthest Shore" is a beautiful climax to that original trilogy, combining subtle, evocative prose with realistic characterization and a pair of equally important, entwined plotlines. Dragons, magic, wizards, and dozens of different islands are all entwined in an intriguing contrast between the young and the old, death and life.

Arren, prince of Anlad, comes to Roke to tell the wizards there dire news: Magic is seeping out of his country, where words no longer have power and spells are forgotten. The aged Archmage, Ged Sparrowhawk, sets off with the eager, sheltered young prince to find out what is draining the "wells of wizardry."

As they cross Earthsea, they find more difficulties, places where magic is draining away, the dragons are dueling, spells and songs are forgotten, and the dead are crossing over under the influence of a mysterious figure who is at the source of it all. Great changes are in store for both Arren and Ged before they can deal with the strange forces changing Earthsea...

"The Farthest Shore" displayed Ursula Le Guin at the height of her creative powers -- her writing had matured from the more formal style of "A Wizard of Earthsea," but she hadn't gone off on the dismal man-bashing tangent of "Tehanu." It's the perfect balance of skill and high-fantasy perspective.

Well, her prose is still relatively formal. But she's loosened up enough to insert some gentle humor into her story (Arren and his "nuncle" Ged playing around with accents and dialects), and the horror of the story's villain. And she evokes some truly sorrowful imagery in scenes such as the dead looking out at the living, and an old woman hysterically crying out her true name, because "there are no secrets, and there is no truth, and there is no death."

As with "The Tombs of Atuan," the story's centerpiece is Ged Sparrowhawk's relationship with a younger, more naive companion. And in this story, it presents an intriguing contrast between youth and age, knowledge and inexperience. Ged's experience and wisdom are necessary as Arren knows virtually nothing about what could cause the crisis, while Arren's innocence and loyalty are necessary as a counterbalance.

Here Ged is a weary, middle-aged man who is beinning to reflect on his life and mortality. Arren is an essentially good young prince -- not a spoiled brat, but has never been given the opportunity to do anything.

An entrancing fantasy epic and a thought-provoking look at life and death, "The Farthest Shore" is an exquisite midpoint for Le Guin's series -- and a brilliant end to her first trilogy.
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Book one The Wizard of Earthsea was required reading for a children's literature course I did back in 1999. I enjoyed it so much I read all the books and collections of short stories set in that world. Yet even though this novel finishes by revolving again around Ged, it is really about Tenar/Arha, a young girl believed to be the reborn High Priest of the unnamed ones. (Nameless ones.) Her name is taken from her at 6 years of age, a year after she was taken from her family and home. She is given the name/title 'Arha' ' 'the one without a name.'

She grows, learns and becomes high priestess under the tutelage of Kossil, priestess to the God-Kings and Thar of the God Brothers.

Then one day she sees Ged in the under tomb, and he has magic light. She traps him in the labyrinth. She then chains him and visits with him. Kossil finds out about this and plans to kill them both. Tenar, fearing this, visits Ged in the treasury where she has hidden him.

He renames her Tenar and together they escape and return the Ring of Erreth-Akbe to the inner islands that they may have peace. For the 9th rune that had been lost when the ring was broken when the rune was cut in half. Now with both pieces Ged could recover the rune and restore peace.

The book ends with them in the city of Havnor.

Note: Pay close attention to the names of boats in the series. In this one Ged guides a boat called Lookfar.
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I read most of the Earthsea Cycle as part of a children's literature course I did back in 1999. This is another book about Ged. But in this one he is the special educator to Lebanner/ Arren.

It is a book about the big questions, such as life and death, and the search for who we are. It is also about what we are to be and the idea of predestination. Ged says 'to seek to be one's self is rare.' It is also that we seek what we don't know in order to be found by our destiny.

In the book darkness is overtaking the world, singers are losing their songs, mages are forgetting their crafts. Men doubt and society is decaying, all because of fear or death. Men are giving up their true names to a lie. They are becoming slaves to a dead master.

Key Notes:
Ged is Master of Roke ' Archmage
Lookfar (Ship is back again)
Isles of Myths
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le 19 novembre 2007
This is a classic read in the fantasy genre, one that any fan of books by Tolkien should be sure to check out. LeGuin uses a succinct and crisp writing style to bring the world of Earthsea into being. Not to be missed.
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le 11 mai 2004
I had read the first book of this great series and I found myself not being able to put the book down. And when I started reading the second book I only thought there was no way this could be as good, however I had the same great time reading it as I did the first book. I believe that everyone should read this book even if you have not read any others from this series, because in essence this book is really based on people growing up, finding themselves and learning what they want to accomplish in life. This book also shows a great friendship between two people and overall it is just a wonderful book. I suggest everyone to read it.
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le 14 avril 2004
The second book in the EarthSea trilogy, The Tombs of Atuan is a great book for all those who delve into the world of fantasy. The Author of this book is Ursula K. Le Guin. Le Guin wrote the Earthsea trilogy which became a well known series for all audiances.
Though it would be better understood and probably more forfilling if the first book was read of the series. I believe the theme to have been Man vs. Nature as Sparrowhawk the main character, a wizard from the island of Gount seeks out an ancient treasure in the Tombs of Atuan. He meets the high preistess of Atuan. They must battle against the spirits with the tomb.
In my opion it was a book that forced me to ponder about the morales in my life. It's rather a short book but it has a great ending despite that, that makes you search for the last book in the series. Some people may consider it slow in the beginning but I must say that it's building the plot thick and strong in the begining. Overall Le Guin is a great writer and that the second book is as good and brilliant as the first.
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