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Changeling (The Changeling Saga #1)

3.71  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,658 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews
People suffered under Det Morson's power. When the wizard Mor joined the fight, Det & his infamous Rondoval castle were destroyed. But the victory was not complete, for the conquerors found a baby amidst the rubble: Det's son, Pol. Unwilling to kill the child, Mor took him to a world where the ways of magic were considered mere legends--a world called Earth.
Young Mar
Paperback, 272 pages
Published April 1st 1981 by Penguin Putnam (NY) (first published January 1st 1980)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,510)
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Dan Schwent
May 09, 2011 Dan Schwent rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: zelazny
Upon the death of Det Morson, the wizard Mor takes Det's son Pol to a world dominated by technology and switches him with baby Daniel Chain. Pol is raised as Daniel Chain and Chain becomes Mark Marakson, a youth with an extraordinary aptitude for technology. When villages kill Mark's father and attempt to kill him, Mark vows revenge and begins building an army of war machines. Who can stop him? None other than Pol Detson, the boy raised in his place...

While a fantasy story, Changeling is more ab
May 27, 2011 Robert rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is one of Zelazny's openly comic efforts, poking some fun at fantasy novel cliches but also showing a number of more serious themes that will be familiar to readers who have read Zelazny more widely than just the Amber series. For example, opposites seperated and in tension (magic and technology, as in Jack of Shadows) and arch-villians who don't start off intrinsically evil. The latter is perhaps the more interesting in this case; the development from mis-understood well-meaning kid genius ...more
Dec 28, 2015 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first of two books Zelazny wrote in this series. I'm sorry he didn't complete any more. From the dedications, at least one more was planned (one to each kid). Again, he's mixed Fantasy with SF into a very interesting tapestry that's a quick, fun & interesting read. He's put a somewhat unique spin on well worn subjects & brought them into conflict & out again.

A world chooses magic over technology & then circumstances lead a well meaning sorcerer to exchange babies betw
Nov 23, 2015 Chris rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Zelazny fans
Recommended to Chris by: Jim
This was a great quick read. It was done in a simple style, yet was very layered as a story. In this book you have the two switched at birth, now grown up young men finding their places in their alien worlds. They are both outcasts of a sort.

A great tragedy causes the wizard Mor to realize it was an error to switch the babies at birth, and to try to rectify the situation, brings back the one from the modern world into the wizard world. The two meet, and at first seem like they might be friends.
Fred D
Oct 11, 2008 Fred D rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 05, 2014 Ghoule rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 06, 2014 Gusf rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Changeling is a novel written by Roger Zelazny where there are 2 versions of the same boy. Rondoval castle is under attack and two wizards are going head to head. The end result of this battle is a child being removed from this magical world of wizards and being taken to a world that is more technologically advanced and less magical. It is the polar opposite of the first world in that respect. The child is traded for a young boy named Dan. Dan is taken to the other boy's world. The other boy, w ...more
Oct 31, 2014 Randy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I hadn't read this book since the mid-80's, and decided to give it another whirl. I liked it. Zelazny is so good at mixing worlds of myth and of tech (Amber, Jack of Shadows, etc.), although this feels like one of his more rushed efforts, where the plot drives along, and characterization sort of jostles along in the back seat. The "thread" magic is enthralling and wonderful to read. If you haven't read it in awhile, go for it.
May 30, 2014 Vincent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting twist on magic and technology.

This is an old idea done well, the child of an evil wizard swapped with a normal child, where it becomes interesting is in the clash of a technology obsessed child in a world that hates technology and a magical child in a world that doesn't believe in magic.

The characters here are all believable in there actions and interactions, Pol and Mark are both likeable with real reasons for their behaviour, not just clichés. There are a few flashes of humour t
Sep 28, 2014 Jesse rated it really liked it
I'm not a big fan of fantasy but I enjoyed how this novel perfectly melded magic with science fiction by pitting them against each other. When the terrible and powerful wizard Det Morson was defeated his infant son was sparred and sent to live on a parallel world without magic. To maintain the balance between the worlds another baby of the same age had to take his place. Pol would grow up in a world of technology as a poet and musician, while Mark Marakson would grow up in the world of magic obs ...more
This book started out SO good, had so much potential, and to be honest, the actual story isn't that bad but fuck is the dialogue awful. And the one female character is so one-note, she may as well have been a stick figure. maybe she was.

So i got about 60% of the way through, which is about 20% more than I wanted to read but I was determined to continue, obviously it got so .... cheesy, kinda cliche, that I just couldn't read further.

I'm not going to judge Zelazny on this title alone, I'll chec
Aug 03, 2010 Lani rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-advenure
This one took me longer to read than I planned to, mostly only to time constraints. However, it still took me a few chapters to get the feel of the story and try to understand what was going on in addition to the main characters.

I was glad that the "main" character was the one that grew up in our reality. The mixture of Fantasy and Science Fiction into one book was really well done, especially by still keeping it grounded in reality.

I love that the weapon and important instrument of the story w
Jun 30, 2011 Alazzar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Picture your favorite sandwich. Think about the ultimate bread, the tastiest meat, the vegetables that aren’t present because vegetables are for sissies. Now, keep the ultimate bread so that the beginning and end stages of your bite are still exquisite, but swap out that tasty meat with something less appetizing, like bologna or a handful of thumb tacks.

You now have Roger Zelazny’s Changeling: delicious at the beginning and end, less so in the middle.

Okay, to be fair, the thumb-tack thing is a m
Charles D.
Aug 08, 2012 Charles D. rated it really liked it
What can I say about Zelazny that hasn't already been said? Even at his worst--and this isn't--I love him.

This novel deals with a pair of sons that are switched shortly after they're born. One is the son of a powerful dark sorcerer in a magic world and the other of a talented engineer/technician in a technological world. The magical child (Pol) grows up ill at ease around technology and his innate magic always causes 'jinxes'. The technological child (Mark) grows up in the medieval magical world
Dec 23, 2013 Onefinemess rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, fantasy
A random book I picked up at a thrift shop recently - couldn't pass up classic 80s fantasy (in hardcover!). It was more than I really wanted to pay (I want to say ~$7) and it wound up being a book club edition - which bummed me out more than a little - BUT it's still a pretty neat find. Circa 1980, cool, retro cover:

...with the obvious notable exception of the "cover babe". More on that in a few sentences.

Another quirky thing about this is that is' an "illustrated" book. Sort of. Once or twice p
Feb 18, 2014 Attila rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, sf, adventure
Takes place in an interesting - if not too original - setting where a magic-based and a technology-based world coexist in parallel. Two children are raised in the "opposite" worlds from where they originated, and later they face off in a battle meant to restore the worlds' balance. This is the first book in a trilogy, but I could not find the other two.
Oct 24, 2013 Evan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Changeling was buttressed by an engaging beginning and an exciting, action-packed ending. The middle, however, seemed to meander and was heavy on exposition. I found myself wanting to know more about what it was like for Pol and Mark growing up, developing their artistic and mechanical skills, respectively. Pol and Mark are really the only characters with the least hint of multi-dimensional personalities. Nora is a terribly flat and borderline offensive portrayal of women (she also is the only w ...more
Pol Detson is only a baby when his (possibly evil) father is destroyed in a magical battle, and Pol is taken to another world to keep him safe from angry villagers bent on revenge. In his place, another baby is brought back to Pol's world and is adopted by villagers, who name him Mark. Mark grows up to be very technologically inclined, which is considered to be evil dark magic in Pol's world which is full of enchantment but short on machines.

The time comes when the wizard who stole Pol away as
Tim Schmelter
May 01, 2012 Tim Schmelter rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Saying that Changeling isn't Roger Zelazny's best effort is like saying the Arctic can be a bit nippy. The characters are paper thin and forgettable, the writing stilted and amateurish, and the plot something that clearly fell out of the editing process during the writing of one of his far superior Amber novels. Being unfamiliar with the series, I started reading the much better Madwand before I realized that this book preceded it. A happy accident, it turns out; if I had started with Changeling ...more
Timothy Boyd
Jan 25, 2016 Timothy Boyd rated it it was amazing
This and it's companion book Madwand are a fantastic read. Two children are swapped between worlds. One from a magical world to our earth, the other from our earth to the magical world. Each has to learn to fit into a world he was not born to. Highly recommended!
Edwin Kort
Feb 16, 2016 Edwin Kort rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Leuk verhaal.

Om het land te redden wordt een baby uit het rijk omgewisseld voor een baby uit de mensen wereld.

opmerking: De vertaler zou minder vaak het woord 'Dan' moeten gebruiken.
Carol Waters
Maybe it was the artwork in my volume, with the semi-nude woman braving the elements and the two guys, science and magic, fighting over here. This was not much of a book for anyone over, say, 14. Just not much plot.
Jul 26, 2015 Đenis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-shelf
Svet sa rozdelil na dve rôzne reality. Našu, kde technológia určuje osud sveta a pôvodnú z ktorej bola technológia oddelená a v ktorej stále vládne mágia. Syn mocného černokňažníka je po porážke otca zamenený so synom počítačového experta. A tak obaja vyrastajú vo stetoch do ktorých nepatria. Mark, technologický génius vo svete mágie a neskôr premenovaný Pol v našom normálnom svete. Mark ale začne robiť v magickom svete problémy a tak sa mág, ktorý výmenu zapríčinil privedie Pola domov aby sa s ...more
Could have been great, but turned out merely good. I don't like the fate of the changeling, and the ending is too hasty
Imaginative, admirable set of characters. Zelazny is a great storyteller.
Jason Catoggio
Apr 10, 2015 Jason Catoggio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
good book with interesting twists on things
Keith Davis
Nov 29, 2009 Keith Davis rated it really liked it
The infant son of a wizard is swapped with a baby from our world. The later brings technology to the fantasy world, while the former finds his way home through magic. Naturally the two go to war over a woman. Some fantastic scenes including the invention of a paddle wheel, the awakening of a dragon, and the reassembly of a broken magic staff. A unique magic concept is used in which magic is visualized as linking strands of various colors visible only to the wizard and with different properties b ...more
Aug 09, 2015 Moira rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, lyrické, čj
9.8.2015 - 4*
Joseph Young
An ok fantasy book about dual worlds of magic and technology. The book was somewhat engaging, but there didn't seem to be much complexity behind it. There was a small introduction to the realm with back story, but it almost seems as if the first half of the book was a back story. Second half: A simple fetch powerful item quest, then use your own internal power to beat another enemy. It does foreshadow more, but is relatively light as a novel. I probably would have enjoyed it more as a teenager.
Lord Humungus
A mediocre effort from Zelazny. Even though there's plenty of story, it moves along very quickly and feels underdeveloped and sketchy. I'm not sure if this book would have held my attention even as a younger reader. The one truly positive element in the book are the illustrations by Esteban Maroto, reminding me of Heavy Metal and Moebius. I loved the art's distinctive 70's sci-fi/fantasy feel, and Maroto's renderings are excellent.
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What's The Name o...: SOLVED. character who plays guitar and has magic tattoos [s] 9 178 Aug 17, 2014 10:06AM  
Roger Zelazny: Changeling - spoilers 30 27 Dec 05, 2009 03:54AM  
Roger Zelazny: Changeling - No spoilers 17 20 Nov 19, 2009 08:17AM  
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Roger Zelazny made his name with a group of novellas which demonstrated just how intense an emotional charge could be generated by the stock imagery of sf; the most famous of these is A Rose for Ecclesiastes in which a poet struggles to convince dying and sterile Martians that life is worth continuing. Zelazny continued to write excellent short stories throughout his career. Most of his novels dea ...more
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Other Books in the Series

The Changeling Saga (2 books)
  • Madwand

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