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The Man of Gold (1984)

af M. A. R. Barker

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Serier: Tékumel (fiction) (1)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
2286119,627 (3.66)3
In this novel from the TEKUMEL(R) series of books, forgotten knowledge from the distant past now threatens the Empire of the Petal Throne. Harsan, raised among the alien Pe Choi, must take his place among humans when the Emperor summons him to decipher the secret of the Man of Gold. Follow Harsan on his quest as he searches for the knowledge that will change the world of Tekumel.… (mere)
  1. 00
    Daughter of the Empire af Raymond E. Feist (sandstone78)
    sandstone78: Feist and Wurts' setting of Kelewan is highly derivative of Barker's Tekumel; fans of the original looking for more may enjoy the Empire trilogy and fans of the Empire trilogy interested in the source material may enjoy the Tekumel books.
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Viser 1-5 af 6 (næste | vis alle)
I need to sit on this one and process what I actually read, but for now it's definitely a solid three stars. ( )
  sarahlh | Mar 6, 2021 |
This is fantasy as Tolkien intended it. If post-Lord of the Rings fantasy resembled Barker's "Tékumel" rather than Brooks' "Shannara," we'd live in a better world. Barker, I imagine, was one of the few who understood what Tolkien was after on a molecular level (language being the basis for mythology and world-building). His vision is different, of course, honing in on non-Western cultures. The influence of the pulps is present, but rather than cheap exploitation, Barker seems to utilize it to further the development of his world and distance it from that which we are used to (in other words, it's good fantasy). Tékumel is cosmopolitan and complex, just like what one would expect from a land based on the Subcontinent or pre-colonial Mexico. While the plot is relatively simple, the setting is what grabs the reader's attention. It's overwhelming, in fact. Imagine staring at a Aztec mosaic and perseverating upon the intricacies of each line and angle, so much that it might even distract you from the image of the whole - that's what exploring this novel feels like.

I first learned about M.A.R. Barker in November 2012, less than a year after he died. I've wanted to read his work ever since. I've been happy to finally have a chance (his work was out-of-print). I don't play "Dungeons and Dragons"-type board games, but it would be nice to see Tékumel return in force as a computer-based RPG, or in literature as a short story collection.

5 stars. Highly recommended. This is fantasy as it should be. ( )
  Sylvester_Olson | Jul 1, 2018 |
I really enjoyed this book more than I had expected to, maybe because I did not expect too much. M.A.R. created the world of Tékumel and its gods and languages for a game: Empire of the Petal Throne. It is a very original science-fantasy setting and I had read a bit about it before reading this book. Like J.R.R. Tolkien, Barker was a linguist whose invented languages helped shape his fantasy world. However Barker's fictional work never received the literary acclaim of the Lord of the Rings.

The hero of this story, Hàrsan, is a bookish scribe whose knowledge of an obscure ancient language embroils him in a palace and temple intrigue which threatens the whole Tsolyani empire. He finds himself pursued across the empire by numerous factions. He flees through ancient dungeons looking for a mysterious artifact called the Man of Gold. Along the way he meets various villains, creatures, friends and lovers.

There are a lot of words in the invented Tsolyanu language but they are presented in the text with their English translation, for example Chtin-flies or Chlen-beast. This was an ok approach -- it added a foreign atmosphere without requiring a glossary or dictionary. ( )
  questbird | Apr 20, 2017 |
The game "Empire of the Petal Throne", is the setting for this novel, and we follow the adventures of a young priest/magician as he finds his way into an adult role in this complex and intriguing society. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Jun 10, 2014 |
A novelization of the author's role playing game, Empire of the Petal Throne. The game was far more original than Dungeons & Dragons, with truly odd alien races instead of overworked orcs and elves. The novel illustrates why game settings don't translate readily into readable works of fiction. To his credit, Mr. Barker does try to rationalize his overloaded milieu, but it is evident that there is more invention than imagination at work. ( )
  TomVeal | Jan 25, 2009 |
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M. A. R. Barkerprimær forfatteralle udgaverberegnet
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In this novel from the TEKUMEL(R) series of books, forgotten knowledge from the distant past now threatens the Empire of the Petal Throne. Harsan, raised among the alien Pe Choi, must take his place among humans when the Emperor summons him to decipher the secret of the Man of Gold. Follow Harsan on his quest as he searches for the knowledge that will change the world of Tekumel.

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