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Jack Vance Message Board 1/1/2012
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Author Vance's Book Reviews

City of the Chasch
City of the Chasch is the first of four novels in Jack Vance's Tschai, Planet of Adventure series. A human spaceship traces a signal to a previously unexplored star system 212 light years from Earth. Scouts Adam Reith and Paul Waunder are sent to investigate, but their mother ship is destroyed by a missile while they are en route, and their damaged boat crash lands on the planet. To Reith's amazement, a band of primitive humans arrives at the crash si...
Lyonesse: Suldrun's Garden
Lyonesse is a magical group of islands in the Bay of Biscay, inhabited by fairies, wizards, and several warring human nations. Princess Suldrun is the daughter of the King of one of these nations, and her father hopes to marry her off in a politically advantageous way. When Suldrun proves uncooperative, she is locked away in a small garden overlooking the sea. One day, a young prince of another Lyonesse nation, Aillas, is washed ashore near the garden...
Rhialto the Marvelous
This is a set of tales about a wizard named Rhialto the Marvelous. He is a member of a council of other powerful wizards. There are three stories about Rhialto that compose this book. One is about a powerful witch from the past, who is attempting to destroy the wizard council and bring about a reign of witches. The second story deals with how a rival mage in the council tries to discredit Rhialto, and eventually even goes so far as to try to change the i...
Servants of the Wankh
Servants of the Wankh is the second of four science fiction novels in Jack Vance's Tschai: Planet of Adventure series. Adam Reith faces the daunting mission of returning to Earth, 212 light years away, after the rest of his crew and their spaceship are blown up by parties unknown. Tschai is home to no less than five sentient, mutually hostile species: the native Pnume, three previously unknown spacefaring races, and human beings. After having survi...

Vance booklist

The Book of Dreams
The Book of Dreams is the fifth and final novel in one of Jack Vance's science fiction series, the Demon Princes, in which Kirth Gersen sets out to eliminate the five arch-villains who enslaved or murdered his loved ones. Gersen's quest is nearly at an end; all that remains is Howard Alan Treesong. This is no easy task, for Treesong rules the underworld across human space and almost succeeded in getting himself made head of the Interworld Police Coor...
The Dirdir
The Dirdir is the third of four novels in Jack Vance's Tschai: Planet of Adventure science fiction series. Determined to return to Earth, stranded spaceman Adam Reith decides to attempt building a starship from scratch. However, that will take an enormous amount of money. There is only one way to get that much quickly: risk the Carabas. The Carabas is a region containing the mineral nodes from which sequins (the currency of the planet Tschai) are made...
The Face
The Face is Jack Vance's fourth novel in the science fiction series the Demon Princes, preceded by The Palace of Love. Kirth Gersen has dedicated his life to taking down the five master criminals who, in his childhood, killed or enslaved his family. Only two remain. From the villain's chosen name, Lens Larque, Gersen deduces he comes from the harsh desert planet Dar Sai. "Black sand", a valuable element is mined on Dar Sai, mainly for the benefit o...
The Killing Machine
This is the second novel in one of Jack Vance's science fiction series the Demon Princes, following Star King. Kirth Gersen, while working as a police spy in the lawless Beyond, comes in possession of two papers. They have some connection to Kokor Hekkus, one of the five arch-villains Gersen has dedicated his life to bringing down. Hekkus has embarked on a galaxy-wide kidnapping spree, so Gersen heads to Interchange, a business in the Beyond that spec...
The Languages of Pao
This book primarily deals with the idea that language can influence the thoughts and actions of the people who speak it. The main character lives on a pastoral world with a very weak language, and basically all the main spacefaring races can push them around. Political intrigue sends the heir to the throne into exile on to a science/tech world with a very technical language. He studies there for years under a tutor who is the same man who rescued him dur...
The Palace of Love
The Palace of Love is the third novel in Jack Vance's science fiction series, the Demon Princes, after Star King and The Killing Machine. Kirth Gersen hunts Viole Falushe, the third of the arch-criminals who killed or enslaved his loved ones. He travels to Sarkoy, a planet of poisoners, to interview Kakarsis Asm, who has been condemned to death (by poisoning of course) for selling poisons to Falushe without authorization. He learns that Falushe sold a...

Jack Vance list of books

The Pnume
In the previous three novels in Jack Vance's science fiction series, castaway Adam Reith has had dealings with three of the four sentient alien species that inhabit the planet Tschai in his attempts to return to Earth. In The Pnume, he faces the fourth. Reith is building a starship with the forced cooperation of his prisoner, the treacherous Aila Woudiver. Somehow, however, Woudiver has him kidnapped and sold to the Pnume, the secretive native race of...
The Star King
This is the first novel in Jack Vance's "Demon Princes" science fiction series. Young man Kirth Gersen's goal in life is to track down and destroy the five arch-criminals who, in his childhood, had descended on his settlement and killed or enslaved all he loved, save only his grandfather. The grandfather trained him well for his daunting task, though space is vast and his chances of success small at best. On Smade's Planet in the lawless Beyond, e...


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