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The Hand of Oberon (The Chronicles of Amber #4)

4.19  ·  Rating Details  ·  11,587 Ratings  ·  183 Reviews
Across the mysterious Black Road, demons swarm into Shadow. The ancient, secret source of the royal family's power is revealed, & an unholy pact between a prince of the realm & the forces of Chaos threaten all the known worlds with absolute obliteration. The hour of battle is at hand. Now Corwin and the remaining princes of Amber must call upon all their superhuman ...more
Hardcover, 181 pages
Published January 1st 1976 by Doubleday Books
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dec 06, 2007 Ken rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
...And on into the fourth book of The Chronicles of Amber. It's been a pleasant journey, as the series keeps getting better. (I started out not particularly liking the first book.) This is fun, escapist fare, chock full of melodrama, scheming, betrayal, and cliffhangers. What more could you want from this kind of read? There are some dry patches during which characters explicate at length -- too much telling, too little showing, as I used to hear in creative writing class. But then things pick u ...more
Oct 14, 2015 Nathan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Oh shit! The ending of this book was brilliant! I really was not expecting anything of what happened to happen. Definitely my favorite of the series so far. Looking forward to the conclusion of the books on Corwin
May 03, 2011 Ed rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
At this point I'm pretty much done with this series. For the sake of closure I'm going to finish Book 5, but really I don't understand why this is seen as such a Fantasy classic. The narrative mainly consists of various fairly interchangeable characters explaining the plot to each other, followed by a dull description of yet another 'hellride' between parallel worlds. It isn't clear what anyone's motivations are or what precisely is at stake (I suspect probably because the author himself doesn't ...more
Kimberley doruyter
there are a lot of shifts in this book.
some things you thought true are not and some things that you didn't even know become important.
May 14, 2013 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, print-copy
For me, The Amber Chronicles started getting really good with the third novel, Sign of the Unicorn. The Hand of Oberon was easily just as good.

The story to this point has been full of deception and misdirection, but that didn't become apparent until the previous book. Now, with more (but definitely not all) of the cards on the table, it's interesting to see how Corwin handles an ever degrading situation in Amber, especially when he doesn't know who he can trust.

I think one of the things that rea
Paul Darcy
Jan 09, 2012 Paul Darcy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
by Roger Zelazny, published in 1976.

As I pass through shadow once again, rereading The Chronicles of Amber, I begin to realize the genius of Zelazny even more. Not only does he write an enjoyable and original fantasy romp in “The Hand of Oberon”, but he manages to do it with an economy of pages, though some would argue that the first five novels are really just one big one.

This, The Hand of Oberon, is the fourth novel in the Amber novels and much is revealed about what is going on. The unicorn h
May 13, 2015 Joel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
Things are really heating up now - the interfamily relations are getting intense. So many twists and turns, and the book contained two truly badass battles, arguably more. I am loving this series, and glad I'm ripping through it at such a rapid rate.
Fred D
Feb 28, 2008 Fred D rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
To be honest, I read all of the first Amber Series novels in rapid succession so to me it's all one continuous story. I rate them all pretty-much the same, with the exception of the first one, which got the series off to an awesome start so I gave it 5 stars. I loved all the books and couldn't put any of them down.
M Hamed
Aug 12, 2015 M Hamed rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, fantasy
what ???
who in the flaying holy flaming fuck is Ganeton ?
May 27, 2014 Petya rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Отново страхотна книга. Динамиката не само се поддържа от Зелазни, но имам усещането, че набира и допълнителна скорост! В "Ръката на Оберон" дори повече, отколкото в предишните книги от поредицата, става ясно посланието, че нещата биха могли да са съвсем различни, в зависимост от информацията, с която разполага човек. ;) Удивителна игра на въображението, тактики, схеми, предвиждане на ходове напред и после отново обрати, изненади, нови моменти, нов поглед върху ситуацията, с оглед на обновената ...more
Sep 23, 2015 Daniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you've come this far with this gang of Machiavellian misfits, you obviously like the books. Volume 4 holds the reader's attention by making the plot of the series more complicated--if that is even possible. Zelazny does offer the reader a much-needed recap of the first three books, as well as something more important: an explanation of why the characters don't simply just live in any Shadow of their own design. "I never enjoy meeting people who remind me of other people," Corwin explains. "Pe ...more
Kat  Hooper
Oct 29, 2012 Kat Hooper rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
Audio re-read
3.5 stars

Originally posted at FanLit.

The Hand of Oberon, the fourth book in Roger Zelazny’s CHRONICLES OF AMBER, continues exactly where the previous book, Sign of the Unicorn, left off. The story was originally serialized in Galaxy Science Fiction and later printed in approximately 180-page installments. Each, therefore, is short and ends at some dramatic moment. These days, we’d probably be annoyed with an author who did this (why buy 10 bo
Dec 28, 2015 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fantastic 4th book in the first part of the Amber series. It's the current read for the Zelazny group:

The first few books rocked, but the last, Sign of the Unicorn, ended on a real cliff hanger. This one ties a lot up. There's a bit too much summation in some parts, more than I recall Zelazny ever doing in another book, but it serves a purpose & does tie the story together tighter.

Still one more book to go in the first 5 books AKA The Corwin Cycle &
Jan 24, 2012 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Lots of twists and turns here as assumptions that have been made since the first book are challenged. What is the point of the twist right at the end? I guess I'm stuck reading the next volume.

I don't dislike it, but I am 480 pages into the omnibus and still not really wowed either. The opening of book 4 here contains one of the most tedious narrative recaps I can remember, with a character literally spending several pages telling the plot to another character. The other chunk of narrative that
-¿Es la familia lo más importante?.-

Género. Narrativa Fantástica.

Lo que nos cuenta. El unicornio ha servido para localizar un estrato de realidad todavía más profundo que la propia Ámbar y al intentar recorrer el Patrón con mácula Corwin, Random y Ganelón tienen un extraño enfrentamiento con una bestia de comportamiento raro y terminan descubriendo que alguien ha llevado a cabo ritos peligrosos que implican posibles sacrificios de un miembro de la familia. Cuarto libro de la saga Crónicas de Ámb
Mar 08, 2016 Anita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Early on in this book, Corwin lays out the story so far as he understands it, piecing together the revelations of the first three book. I appreciated this summary, sparing me some rereading. Then our understandings shift as new events unfold. There is a large cast of powerful characters, each with his or her own agenda. Who is actually pretty decent? Who is the traitor?

The ending is a surprise engineered to keep the plot roiling for more books ahead. A surprise, perhaps, but heavily foreshadowe
Dec 07, 2015 Karl rated it really liked it
This copy is signed by Roger Zelazny.
Oct 16, 2014 Mirjam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was RIGHT also the book was good.
Stephanie Bibb
I picked up The Hand of Oberon because I was interested in reading one of the books from the Patterns of Amber series, and it was the one my local library had immediately available. I knew going in that I was likely to be lost at times, since I haven't read the other books. But I didn't mind, and it didn't really detract too much from the story for me (Corwin, the main character, spends a lot of time detailing his past adventures).

I enjoyed the complex illusions and 'magic' going on with the Pat
Feb 27, 2014 Gumps rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Damn I am tired. This was one of those books that kept me up late last night as I just wanted to finish the book. This is probably my favorite book of the series so far. There was a good mix of action, plot development, character maturation and even what I believe should have been a surprise ending.

Now, the only potential negative I have is that many of the key plot advancements or "plot twists" were predictable. I won't mark it down too much, because I don't know if it is because they were too
Alex Hurst
Feb 15, 2014 Alex Hurst rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where to begin?

All shadows flow from Amber. This we have known since the first book, Nine Princes in Amber. The Pattern, the great seal of magic, is the rite of the princes to walk. But the end of the last book, Sign of the Unicorn, left us with Random, Ganelon, and Corwin on the brink of a revelation that will change "the game" forever.

The Hand of Oberon picks up directly after that revelation, and doesn't let go until its wicked conclusion. Part of me is so eager to move on to the next book th
Stephen Brooke
Dec 04, 2015 Stephen Brooke rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
More of the same — which is what we wanted, right? “Hand of Oberon” continues the Amber story, this time with a little more action and a little less philosophy. Which is not to say that the novel does not pose questions that lift it above mere escapist entertainment.

Order and Chaos. That Zelazny sort of lifted that concept from Moorcock's work is no secret. So have many others. The duality of Order versus Chaos is a beloved concept for fantasy writers, from Moorcock and Zelazny on down. It might
Julie Defilippi
Mar 24, 2015 Julie Defilippi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
These are my comments on the first 5 books in the Amber series (Corwin). I find the world he builds and the exploration of self, society and relationships to be utterly fascinating. The plot twists and motives are a little overdone and complex in my opinion. I also found the shadow hell rides to get rather long and the descriptions very hallucinatory. Those minor faults aside, I found the journey/adventure of Corwin to be wonderful. There was so much self realization and personal growth without ...more
Apr 02, 2009 Megan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone!
The way Zelazny writes is incredible~! All of his novels, that I've read so far are like a narrative, as seen in the eyes of Corwin, one of the nine princes of Amber. If you are a fan of fantasy novels, I highly highly recommend checking this author out! I'd also recommend purchasing the Chronicles of Amber, since all 10 books are in there, and it's a great value AND you can go from book to book just by turning the page!
Feb 09, 2015 Josh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Book 4 of the Corwin cycle is cooking right along!

There's a couple of bits dragging this back a little; some of the hellride stuff goes a little ellipse heavy in an attempt to make it seem more psychedelic or something and it doesn't hold up as well. There's also a particularly clunky bit of exposition from Corwin recapping the previous three books that just sits there, begging to be skipped over.

But otherwise? It's terrific. Zelazny keeps adding layers to the relationships between the children
Beth A.
Feb 25, 2010 Beth A. rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
The series is interesting because it's so different from what I normally read. The characters are certainly a lot more cynical and less trustworthy. The plot's pretty complex. It's still challenging for me to follow, and I still don't feel like I know most of the characters well, but I am curious to find out how it ends.
May 10, 2008 Jay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the Chronicles of Amber series I believe had the most brilliant opening sequence of any book I've read. I need to re-read to capture it - any time I pick it up I find myself unable to put it down.
Brian Allen
Sep 12, 2015 Brian Allen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 27, 2015 Jon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
"Acts and their consequences are the things by which our fellows judge us. Anything else, and all that you get is a cheap feeling of moral superiority by thinking how you would have done something nicer if it had been you."

The scheming members of the royal family are slowly revealing their cards and answering some of those lingering questions, but more arise as the plot unfolds. Corwin is finally grasping at the real powers behind the throne in Amber as he starts to unravel all the machinations
Erik Erickson
Sep 02, 2012 Erik Erickson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, scifi, pulp, ya, fantasy
Not much to say at this point in the series. It has maintained the previous volume's quality (but is still light and fun fare).
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • Roger Zelazny's Chaos and Amber (Dawn of Amber Trilogy, #2)
  • The Weird of the White Wolf (The Elric Saga, #3)
  • Phoenix (Vlad Taltos, #5)
  • Swords Against Wizardry (Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, #4)
  • The Second Book of Swords (Books of Swords, #2)
  • Dick: Five Novels of the 1960s and 70s
  • The White Rose (The Chronicle of the Black Company, #3)
  • The Green Pearl (Lyonesse, #2)
  • Myth Directions (Myth Adventures, #3)
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
More about Roger Zelazny...

Other Books in the Series

The Chronicles of Amber (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Nine Princes in Amber (The Chronicles of Amber #1)
  • The Guns of Avalon (The Chronicles of Amber #2)
  • Sign of the Unicorn (The Chronicles of Amber #3)
  • Courts of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber #5)
  • Trumps of Doom (The Chronicles of Amber, #6)
  • Blood of Amber (The Chronicles of Amber #7)
  • Sign of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber #8)
  • Knight of Shadows (The Chronicles of Amber #9)
  • Prince of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber #10)
  • Manna from Heaven

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“Good evening, Lord Corwin,' said the lean, cadaverous figure who rested against a storage rack, smoking his pipe, grinning around it.
Good evening, Roger. How are things in the nether world?'
A rat, a bat, a spider. Nothing much else astir. Peaceful.'
You enjoy this duty?'
He nodded.
I am writing a philosophical romance shot through with elements of horror and morbidity. I work on those parts down here.”
“Добре. Още един ден и ние продължаваме да сме живи. Може дори мъничко бяхме помъдрели. Достатъчно, за да осъзнаем, че все още съществуват много неща, които трябва да научим. Да не губим надежда. Това е то.” 5 likes
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