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The Fall of the Towers ebook

by Samuel Delany


The Fall of the Towers is a trilogy of science fantasy books by American writer Samuel R. Delany.

The Fall of the Towers is a trilogy of science fantasy books by American writer Samuel R. First published in omnibus form in 1970, the trilogy was originally published individually as Captives of the Flame (1963, rewritten as Out of the Dead City in 1968), The Towers of Toron (1964), and City of a Thousand Suns (1965). Delany describes the extent of the rewriting in a final note in the one-volume text.

So I picked up The Fall of the Towers, an omnibus of a trilogy that Delany wrote in his early twenties. What better way to start it off than with a golden oldie? As with many authors, I’ve been gradually collecting any Samuel R. Delany books that show up at the used bookstore in town, and I haven’t read any for a while. So I picked up The Fall of the Towers, an omnibus of a trilogy that Delany wrote in his early twenties.

Come and enter Samuel Delany’s tomorow, in this trilogy of high adventure, with acrobats and urchins

Come and enter Samuel Delany’s tomorow, in this trilogy of high adventure, with acrobats and urchins. In that light, "The Fall of the Towers" is a slightly revised omnibus of three novels that he did in the early sixties, presenting a trilogy about an empire on a future Earth that is engaged in a war that nobody seems to really understand. The enemy isn't quite seen and there are areas that people can't go into due to radiation and back home people are getting conflicting reports of what's really happening out there, to the point where some people start to wonder if they should perhaps do something about all of this.

A four-volume postmodern sword-and-sorcery epic from a multiple Hugo and Nebula Award–winning author (The Washington Post Book World). Again the negations: the City was not on a desert, nor could its dead, deserted towers cast double shadows, nor was the transit ribbon broken. Winner of the 1989 Hugo Award for Non-fiction Samuel R. Delany is the author of numerous science fiction books including Dhalgren, other fiction including The Mad Man, as well as the best-selling nonfiction study Times Square Red, Times Square Blue. He lives in New York City and teaches at Temple University.

Please join us in wishing Samuel Delany a happy 77th birthday today! . Babel-17 is one of the early, short novels of SFWA Grand Master Samuel R. Delany, first published in 1966 and winning the Nebula Award the following year

Please join us in wishing Samuel Delany a happy 77th birthday today! (Posted by the author's publisher). Vintage Books & Anchor Books. 1 April ·. Science Fiction Writers of America Grand Master Samuel Ray Delany Jr. was born in New York, New York on this day in 1942. But I realized something. Delany, first published in 1966 and winning the Nebula Award the following year. 23 November 2018 ·. "And above the empty stage in the laboratory tower of the dead city of Telphar, the crystal sphere dimmed.

Samuel R. Delany Jr. was born in Harlem, New York on April 1, 1942. and for his non-fiction book, The Motion of Light in Water, and the Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement in Gay Literature in 1993. He is a science fiction and short story writer. His first novel, The Jewels of Aptor, was published in 1962. He has written more than 20 novels and collections of short stories, memoirs, and critical essays. He is as a professor in the department of English at the University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York.

Those unfamiliar with Samuel R. Delany's excellent science fiction might be better served by reading his great 1960s work, most notably, "The Einstein Intersection", "Nova", "Dhalgren" and "Triton" than "The Fall of the Towers". Other early novels which I've enjoyed reading include "The Ballad of Beta-2" and "Babel-17"

SAMUEL R. DELANY Winner of three Nebula Awards, he has created a saga of stunning imaginative range and narrative power in the tradition of Frank . Out of The Dead City The Towers of Toron City of a Thousand Suns. Out of The Dead City. PROLOGUE the green of beetle's wings. DELANY Winner of three Nebula Awards, he has created a saga of stunning imaginative range and narrative power in the tradition of Frank Herbert's Dune and Asimov's Foundation trilogy. the red of polished carbuncle. a web of silver fire. Lightning tore his eyes apart, struck deep inside his body.

SAMUEL R DELANY, born 1942, grew up in New York City’s Harlem. His novels Babel-17 and The Einstein Intersection both won Nebula Awards from the Science Fiction Writers of America, as have his short. His books include The Jewels of Aptor, The Fall of the Towers, Nova, Driftglass (short stories), Tales of Neveryon, Triton and Dhalgren, the million-selling odyssey of modern youth. His essays in literary criticism are collected in The Jewel-Hinged Jaw (1977).

Sphere edition paperback, vg+ In stock shipped from our UK warehouse
Narder
Working backwards with Samuel Delany can be an interesting affair, as so much of his later science-fiction (or novels in general) is so infused with theoretical underpinnings that it's almost a pleasant revelation that he could write a story without having the plot become hijacked because he's in hurry to get to the essay at the back explaining how everything you've previously read was an exercise in his new literary theory of applied semiotics. Not that his earlier works were devoid of ideas beyond Ray Gun Man fighting Bug Aliens . . . "Babel-17" has to do with the nature of language and I'm pretty sure "The Einstein Intersection" has a rollicking good time with Jungian archetypes, but you can probably argue at some point that he started to trade the entertainment value of a story in exchange for being able to craft it into the delivery system for a series of increasingly abstract ideas (in that light, the novels focusing on sexuality are almost a welcome relief . . . it may not always be a conclusion I agree with or even find as fascinating as he does, but at least I can understand it without having to hunt down another book on literary theory). I think science-fiction is better off for having works like "Dhalgren" existing, but if everything was like that from the start then I'm not sure how much attention he would have received.

In that light, "The Fall of the Towers" is a slightly revised omnibus of three novels that he did in the early sixties, presenting a trilogy about an empire on a future Earth that is engaged in a war that nobody seems to really understand. The enemy isn't quite seen and there are areas that people can't go into due to radiation and back home people are getting conflicting reports of what's really happening out there, to the point where some people start to wonder if they should perhaps do something about all of this.

That's the view the first book ("Out of the Dead City", but that's the rewritten title, the original was "Captives of the Flame") takes, introducing a bunch of characters from various walks of life in this future society that we'll be seeing extensively later. It depicts a society that's pretty convinced its in a war and is possibly starting to question whether that war is even worth it. There's an appealing strangeness to it, as Delany focuses on a rather diverse group of people living at every level of society, from the Duchess who wants to kidnap a prince, to a mathematician with a rebellious brother and her soldier fiancee, to the giant Neanderthal telepaths that exist at the fringes. The exuberant verve that Delany was known for early on is clearly present and even if a lot of it comes across as rather standard SF for the time, it's well written SF with a sense of style. And if the whole thing seems to turn into a rather stoned take on Doc Smith's "Lensman" series toward the end (all the "Lord of the Flame" stuff that carries through the entire trilogy) its pretty clear that he's still trying to figure this stuff out.

Yet while the first book flirts with the styles and ideas he would eventually be later known for (at one moment there seems to be a tease that the Neanderthal and the prince are going to have a relationship like the ones we see in "Neveryon") once you get partway through "The Towers of Toron" you can basically mark the moment where Chip Delany becomes once and for all Samuel R Delany. We're taken inside the war and like anyone else inside a war the whole thing seems very strange and claustrophobic, while everyone else stuck on the outside can't figure out why they're unable to see in. The scenes with the soldiers feel like the moments that he was most inspired by and while this isn't "Starship Troopers" once we're taken inside the book really doesn't start to let up, become a harrowing and confusing series of events that feels like both hallucination and commentary. As soon as everyone starts watching videos and receiving training you have a feeling that something bad is about to happen and that sense of unease permeates the novel. He doubles down on his views of a collapsing society collapsing further, with barely contained chaos happening at the edges and the few people who believe themselves capable of stopping it might either not be strong enough or completely delusional. And if the revelation that comes at the climax doesn't come as a surprise to anyone who has read fifty years of SF in its wake, that's not something you can really hold against the book.

And by the time we reach "City of a Thousand Suns" Delany is in full flight, not quite reaching the heights of his early classics but showing the potential that existed for them. His prose has sharpened into something more glittering and while some of the plot momentum has been replaced by the shower of abstract ideas there's still somewhat of a balance, with a flair of seemingly offhand yet striking phrases (the most notable the business card worthy "You are trapped in that bright moment where you learned your doom") and a real sense that we're in a place that's only tangentially connected to the world we know, a future that can be extrapolated from ours and still seem very alien, where even the poetry has a flavor to it that we can't quite relate to. It's the view from the bottom of the collapse, where the only real way to go is up and its only fitting that the best way to escape from that is to through the joys of mathematics as people have to relearn how to connect to themselves again and society as a whole. It loses a little bit of the humanity that had infused at the very least the second book, delving into more of the Lord of the Flame stuff and transferring the war from the idea of combat to a more abstract conflict over ideas, appealing more to the intellect than the emotions. But it's a route that Delany would later refine (and quite possibly peak with "Dhalgren", although that's a nice a convergence of the intellect and raw sexuality, a combination he wouldn't be as successful with in other works) into a style that was uniquely his, for all its values and faults. Like any early works these ones are raw, even with some rewriting to polish them, but you get the benefit of when Delany was forced to write in a much zippier style (three books in four hundred pages!) and the underlying joy of an author who's just realized that he can do whatever the heck he wants, and unbound by any notion of what a novel by him is supposed to be like, can't wait to try them all at once.
Ranenast
I've only read two Delany novels prior to picking up the Fall of the Towers trilogy: The Einstein Intersection (2/5 for its incoherent quest) and Dhalgren (3/5 for its impressive length and inventiveness). The synopsis for the Fall of the Towers sounded like it may be an interesting story/test/pursuit so I decided to gamble on this for my third, and maybe last, Delany novel. Beyond the first book's near-incoherent ending, the rest of the trilogy is an intricately woven future Earth, the plot full of rich characters and the backdrop exposing an interesting history. It may well be the most un-Delany-like novel yet, which is perhaps why I liked it so much, but is was an articulate, inventive and flexible read altogether.

*****

The Fall of the Towers 1: Out of the Dead City - 3/5 - An unknown planet is host to a radiation barrier. On one side are the humans which have a historical reminder of the terrible war and the other rests a glimmering yet dead city. The feudal kingdom is home to a weakened king and a promising heir to the throne. When the prince is kidnapped by a menagerie of colorful characters, the kind announces war on the unknown enemy beyond the radiation barrier. One man has been gifted a crystallized body structure to be withstand the barrier's radiation but also enables him to become transparent in certain light. It's with his gift and abilities that lead the colorful assembly to forge through the barrier in hopes of disarming the coming war.

Typical of a Delaney novel, from the onset the initial pattern of events is difficult to fathom; characters are disjointed and events are timelessly situated. But once the grooves begin to merge, an excitement unseen in other Delaney novels brings unsurpassed witticism and a powerful plot flow. A ravenous surge of power is witnessed. The falling of the pieces was epically plotted, great stuff. This is wondrous stuff but it soon lost me towards the ending pages when, like typical Delaney, the plot takes on ethereal essence with very little synchronization of the plot just laid out pages prior to the ambiguity.

*****

The Fall of the Towers 2: The Towers of Toron - 4/5 - Where as `Out of the Dead City' accumulated the characters and plot into a semi-coherent flow (utterly disregarding the ending) and bestowed its density into its pages, the `Towers of Toron' usher in a sort of comfort with the way things have been laid out in the previous book. The characters are recognizable even after three months and the plot is familiar, the vibe is easy is see. The plot's cadence isn't bewildering or enigmatic as with most other Delany novels. Towers of Toron is as simple as a Delany novel must get, a derelict trilogy from his earlier days prior to his success with Dhalgren and The Einstein Intersection.

Though I was loathing the start of this book after the semi-disappointing previous novel, I was quickly encompassed in the plot yet still held a reserved doubt as to the rational of the fantasy/sci-fi mix. The ever present Lord of the Flame is on the loose with the its greater-good nemeses close on the heel, unveiling its subterfuge of war and suffering. The convergence of personal story lines is a fine addition, combing the many walks of life which the Fall of the Towers world provides: the military beyond the barrier, the traveling circus, the palace grounds and the forest dwelling. The plot's unfolding is coherent and interesting, only briefly meandering into a surreal realm which Delany is so fond of penning.

*****

The Fall of the Towers 3: City of a Thousand Suns - 4/5 - From the onset of this third book in this trilogy, its obvious that Delany is taking a different literary route than the previous two books. Book one was more artistic, bordering on avant garde in some areas. Book two was more adventurous, expanding the horizons of possibility for the trilogy. And finally, Book three is a mix of humor and philosophy. City of a Thousand Suns is much more fun the previous two books with a surprising cavalcade of half-forgotten characters crossing paths and Delany's imperial insight into the expanding world of old Earth. Combine this with a heavily philosophical last five or ten percent, the contrast is both impressive and captivating.

Having actually liked Book two, I was eager to start Book three and was met by the familiar scene of the alien entities in The City conversing about three humans on Earth impressed upon by the powerful tri-entity, what is needed from the said humans and how the Lord of the Flames may act to disrupt their plans. The Lord of the Flames takes a backseat in this novel, allowing the story to focus heavily upon character interaction (a real highlight) and the quest to gain access to the psychotic computer (the same computer which fabricated the war in Book two). With the city of Toron under fire from remote controlled armaments, a quest is began which will take the reader from the Devil's Pot, over the sea, into the newly established city of which the title takes its name from and into the realm of the computer. Pretty good stuff!
Paxondano
Those who come to a Delany novel with preconceived notions inevitably will be disappointed, turning away in disgust and incomprehension, but those who approach his books with an open mind will invariably rewarded. In this brilliant early novel, composed in three parts, Delany examines a society on the verge of change and revolution through the eyes of a collection of laser-etched characters whose lives intersect in complicated and subtle ways. Delany's intelligence at 21 was fierce, and one of the beauties of this novel is the way it intertwines the intellectual and the everyday, how it is beautifully written and fiercely opinionated.
Though the action nominally concerns two gestalt beings from another universe, and their interactions with the empire of Toromon on Earth, Delany's true concern is human society in general, ours in particular, its cyclical fate and all-renewing possibility. It's not your typical science fiction. It's a thousand times better, science fiction idealized, then actualized.
I stayed up late to get to the end of the third volume, "City of a Thousand Suns," and closed the book with one word: "Amazing." Even more amazing, I truly meant it. Oscar Wilde famously said that anyone who seeks to write a novel in three parts knows nothing of Art and Life. Here, Delany gloriously proves him wrong.
The Fall of the Towers ebook
Author:
Samuel Delany
Category:
Contemporary
Subcat:
EPUB size:
1802 kb
FB2 size:
1704 kb
DJVU size:
1658 kb
Language:
Publisher:
Sphere; Reprint Edition. edition (1986)
Pages:
416 pages
Rating:
4.4
Other formats:
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