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The Anome (Durdane #1)

3.87  ·  Rating Details  ·  477 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews

A world of strange ways and stranger people. A land where men and women are marked for life. Where they are bound to irrevocable destinies by the proclamations of the Faceless Man-an unseen power which terrorises and controls the world.

Durdane is a place where defiance is punished with death. But this kingdom of myriad mystery and incalculable peril i
Mass Market Paperback, 206 pages
Published October 1977 by Coronet (first published 1971)
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(showing 1-30 of 754)
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Nobody spins the "young citizen provocateur who monkey-wrenches the status quo and topples the oppressive authoritarian regime" story more effectively than Jack Vance. He's simply great at telling this kind of tale. Vance is also adept at giving better bang for the buck when it comes to story content vs page count. Few of his novels exceed 250 pages and yet he's consistently weaving intricate stories that feel epic in scope.

His prose is taut and tightly-crafted and there is little or no wasted
Jun 11, 2015 Daniel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Anome tells the story of young Gastel Etzwane's maturing and coming of age. Durdane is a planet colonized thousands of years before by Earth renegades and it has evolved as a complex society with many different lands and cultures. Etzwane lives in Shant, whose technological level can be compared to early 20th century. However, the depiction of this land's society is greatly complex and varied. Vance started this discussing issues like individual freedom and social manipulation in quite sombe ...more
Aaron Singleton
Another Vance masterpiece. This one is about the musician Gastel Etzwane, the creatures known as the Roguskhoi, and the Faceless Man or Anome, ruler of Shant and their interactions and conflicts. As usual, Vance's societies are plausible and unusual, his setting vivid, his details perfect but not overwhelming. Highly recommended.
Jan 25, 2012 Micah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my first Vance book, and I really enjoyed it. I was hooked from the general premise of a totalitarian ruler known as the Faceless Man whom nobody has seen, yet who can destroy them at any moment by the explosive ring around each of their necks. Even if they're just talking badly of him! This book had my ideal balance of both science fiction and fantasy elements, with the horrible Rogushkoi creatures roaming around raping women and such, as well as some classic planetary and spaceship ele ...more
D.L. Morrese
Jul 29, 2012 D.L. Morrese rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mur (later renamed Etzwane) is from a female-phobic religious community from which he escapes. He then becomes a musician and later learns of a threat to his country in the form of ravaging mutant creatures. For some reason, the Faceless Man, the mysterious supreme authority that rules here, refuses to act against them and minimizes the threat they pose. Etzwane seeks out the Faceless man to discover why and to try to get him to take action.
This first book of the Durdane trilogy was originally p
Stuart Aken
Feb 09, 2016 Stuart Aken rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Described on the back cover of the Coronet edition I read, as Science Fantasy, this novel was first published in 1971, and is the first of a trilogy. I come late to it via my brother who was disposing of it during a small house clearance. I'm glad I chanced upon it.

The setting is another world; the time, the very distant future, when humans have left the Solar System and colonised other planets. This is a world without the computer as we know it, though certain of the tools and devices display f
Raymond Sexton
Nov 05, 2014 Raymond Sexton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The best of the Durdane trilogy. Very readable. There is a subtlety and wry wit In Vance's writing which I enjoy. The setting is typically exotic and yet with that hint of totalitarian menace which permeates much of Vance's sci fi. There is a particularly memorable scene where the young protagonist is running for his life, which is a great lesson in how to create tension.
Dominic Munsill
Not my favorite Jack Vance, it did not carry the same umph as other novels of his that I have read... Still, I never come away from a Vance novel disappointed and this was no exception. The complex governments and laws of the world this story is set in are marvelous and the idea of the "Faceless Man" is brilliant. I suppose if I was aware that my head would blow off if I broke a law, I would never commit the simplest infraction.

It is written with Jack Vance's signature style, with his tight sen
Tim Rice
Oct 20, 2014 Tim Rice rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Pretty cool book. 1970s style dystopia, using a distant future to explore politics. I'm looking forward to the rest of the trilogy. BTW, my previous prediction comparing it to Anathem was wrong.
Ellis L.
It's been so long, I don't remember much, but I do remember I enjoyed it. This three-volume work was my second encounter with Vance, I think. If I remember it correctly, the first one was called The Last Castle.
Interesting worldbuilding, but the writing style didn't captivate me much. The plot is a bit slow but picks up towards the end, when it becomes a pageturner supreme!
Avis Black
Feb 26, 2008 Avis Black rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wish someone would reissue the Durdane trilogy. It's tough to find nowadays.

rachelish Slater
Apr 25, 2014 rachelish Slater rated it it was ok
Shelves: sf
Alternates between being really good and really boring.
Ryan Curry
Jul 06, 2016 Ryan Curry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Good book. Odd ending.
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Aka John Holbrooke Vance, Peter Held, John Holbrook, Ellery Queen, John van See, Alan Wade.

The author was born in 1916 and educated at the University of California, first as a mining engineer, then majoring in physics and finally in journalism. During the 1940s and 1950s, he contributed widely to science fiction and fantasy magazines. His first novel, The Dying Earth, was published in 1950 to grea
More about Jack Vance...

Other Books in the Series

Durdane (3 books)
  • The Brave Free Men
  • The Asutra (Durdane, #3)

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