I like recommending older books that some folks may not be familiar with.  Today I thought of the Chronicles of Amber.  It is a series of books written in the 70’s and 80’s and some in the 2000’s. It is a fantasy masterpiece that will take you on a mind-bending journey through a multitude of strange worlds.  I enjoyed all the books immensely, but the earliest ones will always hold a special place in my heart. Probably because I discovered them at a very young age.

The setting of the book is very intriguing. Corwin is a prince in the city named “Amber’”.  It exists in the center of all realities.  All other parallel worlds are shadows of the one “true city. Corwin must navigate these shifting landscapes to claim his rightful place as ruler.

The main story line centers on the endless conflict between “Order” and “Chaos”.  There are tons of allusions to Shakespeare, Hamlet etc… Even some of the character names are taking straight from Shakespeare. Zelazny’s writing is brilliant. His prose is lyrical and evocative. He paints vivid landscapes. He creates interesting characters that stay with you after you finish the books. The world-building is intricate and unique. Each new dimension adds layers of complexity to the narrative. I don’t recall anything quite like it in any of the many fantasy and science fiction books that I have read.

As the series progresses, the plot twists and turns with the finesse of a master storyteller. I won’t give away too much about it, but the plot is excellent.

These might have been the first books I ever read that were written in “1st person”.   As a writer, I consider these books to be the “gold standard” for 1st person perspective. 

At any rate, I highly recommend these books.  I consider them to be a must-read for fans of the fantasy genre. It is a journey well worth taking. Give them a try. You will not be disappointed.


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