Monday, February 07, 2011

The Rough Guide to Space Opera: Jack Vance - Blue Tyson

Jack Vance is a writer of fantasy and science fiction who wrote a significant number of works at both novel and shorter lengths, many of which I have not seen. Most well known as the creator of the Dying Earth series, with its Dungeons and Dragons inspiring magic system, and does have elements of the planetary romance. Many of the books in his Gaean Reaches future history might be of interest to space opera fans, as will some of the planet based work like Big Planet or Planet of Adventure and others. He actually has a novel that was sometimes titled Space Pirate, and even one called Space Opera. Unfortunately the latter is about the tribulations of an orchestra in space. An example of the annoying tendency for writers to scribe about writers and musicians and others of that ilk as this they are as interesting to the rest of us as they are to them. Particularly when their musical interests lag even further behind current tastes than Hollywood does current science fiction.

The most relevant series here is the Demon Princes as a young man plots and wreaks his revenge across space on a multitude of crime lords on different planets who have done him wrong. The best of these is the fourth book, The Face.

The Face