[Ebook] The Spell Sword Darkover #11 By Marion Zimmer Bradley – serv3.3pub.co.uk

[Ebook] The Spell Sword Darkover #11 By Marion Zimmer Bradley – serv3.3pub.co.uk ❄ [KINDLE] ✽ The Spell Sword Darkover #11 By Marion Zimmer Bradley ➝ – Serv3.3pub.co.uk Although Darkover was a world inhabited by humans as well as semi humans it was primarily forbidden ground to the Terran traders Most of the planet's wild terrain was unexploredand many of its peoples Sword Darkover PDF/EPUB ê Although Darkover was a world inhabited by humans as well as semi humans it was primarily forbidden ground to the Terran traders Most of The Spell PDF or the planet's wild terrain was unexploredand many of its peoples seclusive and secretiveBut for Andrew Carr there was an attraction he could not evade Darkover Spell Sword Darkover MOBI ó drew him Darkover haunted him and when his mapping plane crashed in unknown heights Darkover prepared to destroy himUntil the planet's magic asserted itself and his destiny began to unfold along lines predicted only by phantoms and wonder workers of the kind Terran science could never acknowledge THE SPELL SWORD is a Darkover novel to stand with the great ones of the series.


10 thoughts on “The Spell Sword Darkover #11

  1. Karl Karl says:

    DAW Collectors #119Cover Artist George BarrName Bradley Marion Eleanor Zimmer Birthplace Albany New York USA 3 June 1930 25 September 1999 Alternate Names Lee Chapman John Dexter Miriam Gardner Morgan Ives Marlene Longman Astra of the Spheres Marion Zimmer Marion E Zimmer Marion Eleanor ZimmerAlthough Darkover was a world inhabited by humans as well as semi humans it was primarily forbidden ground to the Terran traders Most of the planet's wild terrain was unexplored and many of its peoples seclusive and secretiveAndrew Carr there was an attraction he could not evade Darkover drew him Darkover haunted him and when his mapping plane crashed in unknown heights Darkover prepared to destroy himUntil the planet's magic asserted itself and his destiny began to unfold along lines predicted only by phantoms and wonder workers of the kind Terran science could never acknowledgeDarkover Series 1 Darkover Landfall 1972 2 Stormueen 1978 with Paul Edwin Zimmer 3 The Fall of Neskaya 2001 with Deborah J Ross 4 Zandru's Forge 2003 with Deborah J Ross 5 A Flame in Hali 2004 with Deborah J Ross 6 Hawkmistress 1982 7 Two to Conuer 1980 8 The Heirs of Hammerfell 1989 9 The Spell Sword 1974 10 The Shattered Chain 1976 11 Rediscovery 1993 with Mercedes Lackey 12 The Forbidden Tower 1977 13 Thendara House 1983 14 City of Sorcery 1984 15 Star of Danger 1965 16 Winds of Darkover 1970 17 Thunderlord 2016 with Deborah J Ross 18 The Heritage of Hastur 1975 19 The Planet Savers 1962 20 The Sword of Aldones 1962 21 Sharra's Exile 1981 22 The World Wreckers 1971Written by othersHastur Lord 2010 with Deborah J Ross 24 Exile's Song 1996 with Adrienne Martine Barnes 25 The Shadow Matrix 1997 with Adrienne Martine Barnes 26 Traitor's Sun 1999 with Adrienne Martine Barnes 27 The Alton Gift 2007 with Deborah J Ross 28 The Children of Kings 2013 with Deborah J Ross 29 The Bloody Sun 1964 A novel by Marion Zimmer Bradley


  2. Jason Jason says:

    An Earthman Andrew Carr crash lands on an alien planet while pursuing a girl he has only seen in his dreams After the crash Andrew stumbles through a blizzard but the girl guides him along appearing to him as a ghostly apparition like Obi Wan Kenobi on the planet Hoth With her help he makes his way to a hut where he takes shelter Soon we learn the mysterious girl’s name is Callista and that she herself is in trouble She has disappeared doesn’t know where she is can see only darkness and does not understand how she formed a psychic link with a human from another world The book grips us early with a few well worn but still effective mysteries who is this mysterious girl? Where has she disappeared to? Why is so much of science fiction occupied by mysterious girls? Does her disappearance have anything to do with the darkened lands a blasted area everyone is warned to avoid a place of withered gardens and evil men from whom all wanderers return babbling mad? I would never dream of spoiling the answer to that last uestion but I’ll let you make an educated guess As Andrew wanders through the snow guided by the ghostly Callista we are introduced to the other point of view character a local man named Damon who is having his own problems with the blizzard As he and his men travel home they are attacked in ambush by bodiless swords that slash at their throats Damon abandons his men to their deaths an act the book doesn’t know what to do with and so largely ignores for the remainder and makes his way through the raging snow to the home of his betrothed who is Callista’s sister There he discovers that Callista’s guardian has been found dead with her eyes torn out and Callista is gone So we have two men one a visitor to this planet and one a native each with a connection to the missing girl each pushing through the storm each a stranger to the other but edging inexorably towards a rendezvous at that house and when they meet we can be sure each to be recruited to the rescue of this same damsel in distress This first third of the novel is uite evocative Bradley maintains a skillful balance between science fiction fantasy and horror tropes and also an enticing tone that is moody and forlorn weather inhospitable things abandoned people lost darkness spreading crops dying lonely girls in dreams calling for help There is a touching scene in the hut Andrew takes shelter in where the man from Earth shares the night with the phantom of his dream woman They cannot touch neither even knows where she is but they lie beside each other in the darkness providing for the other whatever comfort they can Damon meanwhile has psychic abilities all scientifically explained by “matrix technology” of course and there are some lovely descriptions of his out of body experiences in the “overworld” an abstract plane of darkness and dim outlines and the vague presence of disembodied strangers as he tries to locate Callista He can't seem to find her Bizarrely when Andrew arrives at the house and meets Damon the narrative abruptly grinds to a halt It feels like a train making an emergency stop And then it stays stopped The vast bulk of the rest of the novel takes place in this house almost like a stage play except without the urgency and subtext of great theatre Instead there is lots of talksitting around in the cottage as the blizzard rages outside discussing what they know exchanging opinions about the likely whereabouts of Callista and whether she’s probably still alive or not and who probably took her and why they probably took her and why that’s not a convincing reason but this other reason is probably a convincing reason recounting events to each other that we as readers have already witnessed in the previous chapters explaining how matrix technology works explaining what the overworld is chest thumping over who has the greater right to rescue Callista etc etc etc They spend pages planning their rescue can the matrix stones be used to locate Callista? Can they match their psychic whatsit through the matrix doodads to Callista’s psychic whatsit in order to trace her? They talk and talk It’s all so belabored In the middle of all this we learn to our dismay that Andrew’s characterization is the standard nonsense he used to enjoy girls at every port never getting attached and now suddenly with this dream girl he is awakening to the desire to know her to understand her to be with her forever; he is discovering the real meaning of love At the same time through sheer force of talk all the mysteries are solved she has been kidnapped by the cat people yes you heard that right the cat people The cat people are responsible for the darkened lands She is being kept somewhere in a cave in the middle of the darkened lands Thus their mission is Go to the darkened lands Kill the cat people Rescue the damsel In preparation for their rescue mission they work on their psychic connection using the stones as some kind of focus Through this process Damon discovers his feminine side being a psychic is usually reserved for virgin women and Andrew discovers his homosexual side his psychic links with Damon feel sexual which both “warms and disturbs” him It’s nice that these two men can learn to be feminine and homosexual and all but can’t they have done it while enacting a plot of some kind? A story? Some sort of movement? The static nature of this long 2nd act is baffling It takes up 70% of the book Also baffling is the relationship that Bradley allows to build between Andrew and his dream girl Callista Through their psychic link he has fallen in love with his damsel in distress and lo she has fallen back in love with her rescuer to be too Bradley treats this unhealthy and uneual power differential as if it is deeply romantic or as if the book were written for 11 year old girls who are waiting for their prince to come But this can’t have been written for kids There are too many slashed throats and gouged out eyeballs and in one scene someone’s skull is bashed in and his brains are strewn over the ground And yet the characters follow the classic Disney Sleeping Beauty arc Before they even meet in the flesh Andrew is referring to the helpless Callista as “beloved” and she responds in kind It's sort of icky At the very least some irony would have been welcome Once they leave that damned house and the rescue actually begins and it really does feel like Act 3 The Rescue the pace uickens There is some nicely staged action a cool fight against the shadowy cat people as our heroes enter the blasted area The final scenes are atmospheric even a little tense There is some great imagery of a decrepit village in the heart of the darkened lands insane villagers staring dull eyed out of cracked windows cat people stalking from behind concealing themselves somewhere back there off in the mist It’s all very effective The climactic rescue itself though is predictable and comforting in a Young Adult sort of way Damon learns he can fight He’s got the stuff And the damsel is rescued with a few easy sword fights and a uick defeat of the Great Cat who for the life of me felt like the Main Boss in a Final Fantasy game As Callista is taken to freedom she sobs and clings to her rescuer like a grateful damsel and Andrew swears to marry her and love her forever I know this isn’t meant to be creepy but thoughts of the Florence Nightingale effect inevitably come to mindIn the end the stakes in this mini adventure feel oddly small An alien and a native man meet grow to trust each other teach each other some cool psychic talents and rescue a girl I imagine Bradley's primary interest here is the growing trust between the two men representative of their two cultures but it's all rather simple and straightforward The settings are very limited as if Bradley had to save on the budget None of the characters come particularly alive but the first and third acts contain some authentically involving atmospherics and the world of Darkover itself is an inviting place one I feel I would like to come back to Perhaps the seuel The Forbidden Tower contains depth Certainly a reader of the whole Darkover series will no doubt read this one and it will likely please them For the rest of us there may be better ambitious places to start


  3. Pam Baddeley Pam Baddeley says:

    A fairly short book about the coming to the feudal style planet Darkover of Andrew Carr a Terran who has been rootless since leaving Earth The story is told in alternating viewpoints to begin with as we switch between Andrew and a Darkovan nobleman Damon RidenowAt a fortune teller’s stall Andrew sees a vision of a beautiful young woman in the fortune teller's crystal and forms an instant obsession with her arranging a transfer from his existing job to work on Darkover in the Mapping and Exploration team When the plane he is onboard flies over the Kilghard Hills it is caught in a snow storm and crashes killing the rest of the crew With little food scavenged from the wreckage his chances of survival appear slim until the ghostly figure of the woman he saw in the crystal appears to him and guides him to a waystation Her name is Callista She is imprisoned by unknown enemies and is being kept in a dark place where she cannot telepathically contact her family but for some reason is able to find AndrewMeanwhile Damon has been summoned by his twenty year old cousin Ellemir because her twin sister Callista Keeper in training at the Tower at Arilinn was abducted from her bed while on a visit and the women’s father is absent at the Comyn Council A darkness has fallen on nearby countryside the people are suffering and it seems an enemy has obtained one of the crystals used by telepaths on Darkover and is using it against them Damon must contend with his own sense of inferiority derived from being exiled from Arilinn and having to drift from one role to another ever sinceGradually these two men with a lack of purpose in their lives are drawn together and form romantic bonds with the two sisters The story is a fairly well paced action adventure with psychic elements It forms a preuel to ‘The Forbidden Tower’ and also to the cameo appearance of these characters in the later ‘Thendara House’ novel about the RenuniciatesFree sThe main flaws for me are firstly the infantilising of the women despite Ellemir for example being in charge of the estate in the absence of her menfolk she is continually called ‘child’ by Damon even when he is supposed to be falling in love with her Both women tend to burst into tears fairly easily yet Callista is a highly skilled telepathic worker who has gone through strict conditioning against her own emotions in order to understudy the aging Keeper at Arilinn The author seems comfortable in writing from the men’s point of view in this novelThe other problem is that the use of laran the psychic abilities of Darkovans which Andrew discovers he shares seems very malleable – near the end of the book Andrew is able to do something which would surely draw surprised comment view spoiler he teleports twice hide spoiler


  4. Brian Brian says:

    I think the biggest problem that brings down any of the Darkover books is Bradley's reluctance to ever definitively nail down what exactly laran can and cannot do I read this as part of an omnibus with The Forbidden Tower and there's a note from the author in the beginning where she mentions that she doesn't really care that much about chronology when it would get in the way of a good story And I can respect that viewpoint even if world building is my primary interest in fiction so inconsistencies get in the way of that but here it leads to a lot of problemsSo the cat people are invading right? Okay that's the basis of a good plot Why are they here? Were they driven from their homelands by a harsh winter? Are they taking revenge on the humans for some imagined or real slight? Why did they kidnap a Keeper and what do they need laran for?Nah none of that is important because they're orcs who must be exterminatedI get the desire to make aliens to be inscrutable and mysterious especially since Darkover is theoretically set in a science fiction universe rather than a fantasy one The cat people aren't just cat people despite their appearance they're of alien sapience and their appearance may or may not reflect on their behavior But that's totally undermined by continued reference to behavior similar to Earth cats and by the fact that Damon is a Ridenow and can thus psychically communicate with nonhuman intelligences He even brings it up multiple times during the narrative but he never tries to use it The cat people are just fundamentally unknowable and therefore slaughter is justifiedI mean from the cat people's perspective the humans are the aliens who showed up on their planet drove them out of all the good hunting lands into caves on the fringes of habitable territory and consider them little better than animals I got really annoyed when the Dry Towners showed up as the apparent masterminds behind the invasion because it turns the cat people into just idiot pawns rather than an aggrieved indigenous species seeking to reclaim what had been lost to them As another inconsistency which may come from The Spell Sword being written relatively early I thought Keepers were supposed to have an unconscious reflexive defensive mechanism to prevent them from being touched unwillingly Rediscovery even has a Keeper burn someone else to death that she was in laran contact with as part of the backlash of her defenses but here the cat people steal Callista from her bed with no problems whatsoever One of the interesting parts of fantasy is how society deals with people who have strong innate personal power for example the ability to set people on fire with your mind and how that changes the way society relates to each other Darkover's answer is usually personal power cannot overcome human prejudice so women still have narrow societal roles that they must decide between and just adds can set fire to people with her brain as a possible female oriented job I think there's actually a lot that could be done with that message and how Darkover keeps the old female choice between work or family since Keepers cannot have relationships at all while they're working the relays literally since they're trained to not feel desire In the hands of someone like Ursula Le Guin that might have actually been an issue The Spell Sword touched on but as it is how Callista seizes on Andrew as her savior and what she feels for him is just taken as given and good luck trying to explain itSo why did this get two stars if it's full of so much inconsistency and doesn't touch on the parts that I would have found most interesting? I'd like to say that there's some major redeeming features that I haven't mentioned yet that pulled it out of the abyss but I'd be lying The truth is that I thought the romance between Callista and Andrew was touching Yes it makes no sense in context of the world and yes Andrew should have burst into flames the first time he actually touched her to say nothing of trying to use her matrix But I liked the relationship and the way it developed mostly at a distance and so I'll give it small praise for that One star for cuteness and one star because it's the minimum that Goodreads allows for a book I wouldn't recommend it even for Darkover fans as if you're interested in romance there are far better books to read and if you're interested in Darkover there are far better books to read Give this one a missNext Review The Forbidden Tower


  5. Valerie Valerie says:

    Bradley rewrote several of her earlier books to bring them in line with the main seuence If she did so with this book I haven't seen a copyThe Spell Sword isn't really enchanted of course there's just a matrix attached to enable the injured Dom Esteban to take over the reflexes of his less gifted son in law to beThe Catmen of Darkover are almost never really introduced anywhere in the series They're offstage shadows mostly blamed for breakdowns and attacks that could as easily have been left to human bandits There's no real analysis of their motives and culture It wouldn't be surprising if say the Ya Men who never really appear at all except when driven out of hiding by a Ghost Wind or the timid Trail Men or the Forge Folk Who may be mutated humans would resent the takeover of their world by Earth humans But the Cat Men have no real obvious motive for moving in on Alton lands or other lands into the Hellers UNLESS human incursions into territories they once considered exclusively theirs had become insufferable over time But in that case why would they wait for a charismatic leader? Unless of course they're really too individualistic to be realistically effective as soldiers Worse there's no real ATTEMPT to get to know them Several people most notably Damon Ridenow whose GIFT is communicating with nonhumans simply dismiss them as unknowable The only meeting that's accepted is fighting No other communication is even offered though it's evidently possible for humans to communicate with the cat folk If the Dry Towners not noted for their empathy are able to trade with them why can't a Ridenow? And I don't mean the Great Cat either He's evidently an aberration and seems uite likely to have been insane What about the ordinary cat folk? Take one example The 'darkened lands' are said to be darkened because the nocturnal cat folk find sunlight painful I can definitely relate so do I But why do the cat people feel they HAVE to go out in the daytime? If they're nocturnal why not remain so? And why would they have fled their native lands IF they have we only have the word or humans that they have unless they were driven? You can't dismiss them as motiveless demons The desperation that led the Great Cat to experiment with an unmonitored matrix screen may have been simple madness but the ordinary cat folk chose to follow him And though mention is made of the females there's no real encounter with any in our field of view As for the abuses they're accused of there's no real evidence that the cat folk have any tradition of keeping prisoners or pets They may literally not know the first thing about it If humans find THEIR motives inexplicable may the reverse not be true? The Great Cat argues that he knows nothing of rights only of power and he will use his power to defend his territory This may be what he really meant or it may not Maybe he's as reluctant to grant rights to those not members of his own species as the humans areBut we'll likely never know will we? Because the response of the humans isn't to try to communicate but rather to try to exterminate Once the cat men are no longer in 'human' territory nobody apparently takes any further interest in them not even to see if there's a way to stop these episodic incursions by removing the drivers Cat men before? No interest Cat folk invading? Kill or expel them Cat people after? No interest It's a cycle that's bound to be repeated until the last of the cat folk dies or SOMEBODY starts taking an interest The general problem of bandit fortresses is rather better handled in the Darkover books than in many others Bandits tend to attract the disaffected but these are rarely engineers or builders The Caves of Corresanti in this book were evidently a human laboratory in the past maybe a chieri one but I doubt it During the Ages of Chaos there were such laboratories outside the Towers Part of the Compact involved the abandonment of such laboratories even to a large degree inside the Towers But some of the euipment evidently was too difficult to dispose of properly or nobody made a serious effort to do so A dangerous oversight as proven in this case and later nearly devastating for Darkovan society If you don't dismantle your matrix screens they're there for the using for whoever chooses not to abide by the CompactTechnical note this book ends with a note on chronology by the authorIn other books from this time notably Thendara House there's a comment that the Terran Empire ought to have intervened to mediate between the humans and catmen and to prevent a near genocide Well YEAH The uestion is why didn't they? The evidence is that they didn't because they weren't notified that it was happening It's unlikely that they wouldn't have failed to intervene out of concern for Terran Darkovan diplomacy this is too important to let passI find on rereading the review that I've left the foreground story almost out of the review The story of the formation of what became the Forbidden Tower is interesting in itself but it's not necessary to read it to understand how the relationships began I'd thought it might be and so I went back to get the book It's not anything like as well written as the later books but it has its points For one thing it has a fairly well developed discussion of Darkovan countryside society as seen from the perspective of an outworlder It also has a few illustrations well the cover picture and one line drawing And it has a dedication some Darkover books do and others don't which reads This one is for CARADOC But it's not really necessary to read this one to understand the later books though remembering it might have helped the characters figure out how the conditioning Callista and others like her underwent might be unraveled I could see this volume being written by the characters themselves as a form of therapy in fact As an adventure story it's fairly light stuff The ghostly visitant leading the wayfarer to shelter is a little unusual but not as much as the wayfarer himself seems to think he must not have read much fantastic literature himself Which makes me wonder what sort of fantastic literature exists in the Terran Empire of the series There must be some and it seems unlikely that people who weren't homebodies wouldn't have read ANY of it The spell sword in the title is really not particularly important Its function is to get the poor swordsman Damon relatively safely to the Caves But if it hadn't existed there would undoubtably have been another way found Andrew Carr somewhat astoundingly to himself and others finds a way And the insecure and fearful Damon if he'd had confidence wouldn't have been in the position he was or doing what he was doing if he hadn't been so fearful he'd still have been at a Tower likely though probably not given the circumstances Arilinn But there are many ways he could have used his powers to sneak into and probably out of the territory claimed by the catmen with or without the help of Andrew and the Altons It's or less a matter of happenstance that Damon comes to realize that the methods of training and using telepaths on Darkover is very wrong and abusive It's also a matter of mischance that the famed swordsman Dom Esteban suffers a spinal injury which renders him paralyzed from the waist down making him unable to lead the rescuers of his daughter the Keeper Not that Damon wouldn't have had to come along as a guide at least because it's argued that Andrew couldn't have made his way through an unfamiliar area even with an escort and therefore somebody in rapport with Andrew had to go alongThe spell sword is actually a form of skyhook it develops The uncoordinated Damon always did understand what he was taught intellectually he just couldn't put it into practice without viscerally experiencing it But this is not clear to anyone until the end and Damon's ability to cede control of his muscles and reflexes to Dom Esteban's control is necessary to provide the needed trainingThis raises an interesting uestion however It's established in this book that the majority of Darkovans are left handed genetic drift? Damon is right handed which makes him awkward in a society where the majority of tools weapons and processes would be designed for the left hand But Dom Esteban is presumably left handed though he seems to have been at least partly ambidextrous So which hand did he take control of? And would Damon have been able to make the shift? At one point there's an encounter with Dry Towners who use different weapons and techniues Dom Esteban had had encounters with Dry Towners before and automatically alters his techniue but this would have to be mirrored surely to work in a righthander?


  6. The FountainPenDiva, Old school geek chick and lover of teddy bears The FountainPenDiva, Old school geek chick and lover of teddy bears says:

    I love the Darkover books but this one is probably the weakest of the series While introducing us to Terran Andrew Carr who while lost in the treacherous Hellers after a plane crash finds himself being rescued by a woman he thinks is a ghost What he finds out is that his rescuer Callista is being held by the matrix wielding cat men We also meet Damon Ridenow unsure of his place as former Tower technician and Ellemir Callista's much opinionated twin sisterThis short novel sets up The Forbidden Tower which is the much richer story Moreover we never truly learn just who the 'Great Cat' was or how they managed to get a hold of a powerful matrix that even the powerful Tower trained technicians could not combat or just why they kidnapped Callista in the first place That was actually one of the series' shortcomings that we never truly spent time with the Dry Towners the Ghost Men the chieri or the Cat Men Their cultures would've made for interesting juxtaposition with that of the rest of the Darkovans


  7. John Loyd John Loyd says:

    The cat people on Darkover have created a darkened land and kidnapped the Keeper Callista Callista hasn't been able to telepathically contact any of her kinsfolk not even her twin sister Ellemir she could only contact Andrew Carr a TerranAndrew on a mapping mission with the Terran Empire Service crash lands in the mountains The pilot and the rest of the crew die It is a struggle but the ghostly projection of Callista helps Andrew survive and find shelter and finally make it to her kinEllemir sends an urgent message to Damon and to her father saying there is trouble Damon's party is ambushed on their way and only he survives the trip While Damon and Ellemir are contemplating how to rescue Callista Andrew shows up and later so does Dom Esteban and his wounded band of guardsmen They were also ambushedWith everybody assembled they now work on figuring out what has happened to Callista so they can make a plan to rescue herThis was a very uick read Enjoyable Didn't bog down The point of view was from the perspective of Damon or Andrew the cat people remained mysterious


  8. Jimyanni Jimyanni says:

    This is one of the earlier entries in Bradley's Darkover series and as such it is somewhat less maturely written than her later books The plot is good but some of the plot devices are a bit trite and the idea of the psychic connection between total strangers who are just destined to be lovers is very childish But overall the book is well written and it stands up surprisingly well to close scrutiny 30 years or after it was written That fact that her later books are better is NOT a severe criticism


  9. Kevin Knapp Kevin Knapp says:

    A nice uick read Character development is well done as are the action seuences Few can match MZB's ability to craft a compelling story arc though sometimes details can be a bit unevenIn this case I docked a star for an apparent 'continuity hole' Andrew's apparent psychic teleportation far beyond the mere telepathic powers of his companions is not described as remarkable or even discussed at all Did I miss something?


  10. Mareli Mareli says:

    mmmm It was a bit boring Little action and mostly on the overworld Callista a uasi keeper has been abducted and the only person who can contact her is a Terranian ; A man of the Earth despised by Darkovans is the only one who can breach the darkness around her I didn't remember this story at all It was a bit short and sort of boring but it put some other brick on Darkover world


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