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The Harp Of The Grey Rose (Cerin Songweaver)
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The Harp Of The Grey Rose (Cerin Songweaver)

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  892 ratings  ·  39 reviews
The Harp of the Grey Rose is one of Charles de Lint's rarest novels, originally published in trade paperback in 1985, and out of print in any edition for more than a decade. We're proud to be publishing the first hardcover edition of this rare fantasy, bound in full-cloth, with a full-color dustjacket.
Hardcover, 228 pages
Published January 28th 2006 by Subterranean Press (first published 1985)
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The Harp of the Grey Rose has been called many things. A collection of cliches...a same old quest fantasy...nothing special.

For me, it was much more. This book was a return to my reading roots. I grew up in the days of Terry Brooks first fantasy stories and cut my reading teeth on Raymond Feist. This was built to appeal to the audience that dominated the mid-80's.

This was the first book de Lint actually wrote, but it was the second or third that he published. It is rough and I easily recognized...more
Erica (daydreamer)
The Harp of the Grey Rose was a wonderful folklore tale. Like a ballad of old, suffused with magic, love, friendship, pain, and evil. It read a little like The Lord of the Rings, the adventure and the friendships bonded tightly through the journey, and the mythical and dark creatures found within. I found that I was enchanted with the story, I became attuned to the characters and found them endearing. De Lint’s storytelling gave the perfect feel of fantasy and folklore to this tale.

Cerin, a lowl...more
Mike (the Paladin)
This is another one of those that's just a bit hard to rate... I'm torn between 3 and 4 stars. The only reason I stay with 3 here is that I can't quite rate it as high as other books I have given 4 stars.

I have read a few books by de Lint and I suppose I'd rate this one as my second favorite. While the book opens well and sucked me right in it didn't hold my interest. A young man beginning life, a seemingly hopeless love, a horrible monster all leading to a quest for our intrepid young Harpist.....more
Kirk Macleod
The Harp of the Grey Rose (1985) follows a pretty straight forward fantasy fiction storyline; a young man meets a mysterious woman, sets out on a quest, and ends up having a significant destiny.

Even with that, however, the story moved along swiftly and like an excellent fairy tale, kept me either smiling at the great characterization or enthralled by the action sequences. Having been a little underwhelmed by his first two books, but hanging on as my wife kept telling me that his later books woul...more
This is another one of those books that I've looked at for several years, tried to start more than once and always ended up putting down for one reason or another. After several people, who don't know each other and have no way of ever meeting, tell you that you should check out an author, you will probably do it, right? Well, Charles de Lint is that author for me. I like fantasy novels usually, and I sometimes enjoy lush characterizations with richly inventive worlds, but there is just somethin...more
A young man sets out on a quest, after his friend/love was captured by an evil entity. The young man is a harper,and there is magic in his music. There is even magic in his blood.

He finds friends in strange guises who help him along the way - like a bear who mind speaks, a young woman who is part deer and part human, and a grouchy little dwarf who was cursed by the young man's mother. With help like this, he finds his Grey Rose and confronts an evil even darker than the one who had stolen her aw...more
nessie tavariel
Much like Lloyd Alexander's Chronicles of Prydain (but with less humour), with a bit lot of Tolkien. Actually, it's probably a lot like a hundred other high fantasy boy-goes-on-quest-and-there's-magic-and-a-girl books. I don't really know. I haven't read so many that I'm sick of them yet. Lovely characters (perhaps a bit distant, but there's a story telling bear with mind powers, so we're all good), good plot, beautiful writing... A fairly satisfying read. I liked it. Not brilliant, but worthwhi...more
Ryan Mishap
Having just gotten into his writing, i thought I'd get his first book and that was a mistake. I know this was written in the eighties, but it fulfills many a fantasy cliche. The writing isn't that great and the characters don't seem as if they could be real, like in his later works. Check out his urban fantasy stuff and avoid the so-called high fantasy.
I wrote a parody of a fantasy story (which you can find in my writing) before I had read this, yet a couple of things I wrote as parodies of fa...more
Amery Xu
Another wonderful and touching tale weaved by Charles de Lint as he details the journey the young harper Cerin of Wran Cheaping makes to save his love the maid of the Grey Rose from danger and the friends of various guises he makes. The writing itself is beautiful in its own way and shows a master writer at work. However, I personally felt that this book could have ended sooner. The dialogue itself seemed to mainly focus on giving the reader background information about the land where Cerin come...more
So this was apparently Charles de Lint's first book, and it was the first book of his that I've read. I have heard his praises sung over and over again, and this first book? was a little bit of a letdown. I felt that he utilized half the clichés in the fantasy genre. The characters stirred no particular emotion in me; they didn't seem real at all. Still, it was prettily written. I wouldn't reread it, but I will still check out his other things to see if I can see why he's so highly pra...more
This is constructed along the lines of a generic fantasy quest narrative: an accidental but nevertheless intrepid hero must go on a quest to save his love and is accompanied by a cast of characters along the way. De Lint does much better urban fantasy than traditional, and this is one of his earlier works, before his voice really came into its own. It's not bad exactly, but I'd recommend skipping it for one of the Newford books. There's nothing here that hasn't been covered a million times befor...more
Allen Steele
This was a lot better than I expected, with action, from the first chapter. a couple of lulls, but very enjoyable. Good ending.
You know how sometimes a book just never grabs you, but you don't understand quite why? That was this book for me. It was easy enough to read. I went through it quickly. It wasn't one of those cases where I just thought, "Ugh. This book is awful. Why can't I be done with it already?" The writing was just fine. The story was fine. I can't put my finger on anything in particular I disliked about it. But . . . I don't know, it was just sort of unremarkable to me.
Lesley Arrowsmith
I was given this book by a friend who knew I liked Charles de Lint, and you can see the promise in the fairly cliched story - what did impress me was the way that the standard quest story was finished quite quickly, and turned into something else.
Interesting for completists, I think - but it does show how the author developed his craft, and his later books (those I've managed to track down, anyway) are among my all time favourites.
This is an interesting read to compare to his latest works.

De Lint is so unique in his current fiction, and has been for so long that this book is startlingly similar to all the other epic style fantasy of the 80's. It's not bad by any means, it just doesn't have that de Lint feel, though I can see hints of his current writing style showing through.
hard to get into the style somehow, and finished with a kind of summary style, but the story, the characters, and that middle whole is well done. Celtic mystic quality to it, though not wholly, and definitely not dark horror, which some of the descriptions had me worried about.
Early fantasy by de Lint. Not as well written as some of his books, but still highly entertaining. While it isn't explicitly stated, characters in this book might be the beginning of two somewhat mysterious characters in de Lint's Newford stories.
Kathy Davie
The start of the Cerin Songweaver series. More of an historical fantasy. De Lint's eye for detail and creating mood is overwhelmingly good.

I'm desperately waiting on the second in the series.
I am a big fan of DeLint's Newford books, The Harp of the Grey Rose is of a different style. It lacks the depth of character and story I have come to love in other DeLint books.
Cathy Holford
A great read for fantasy lovers. I always love tales of Harpers. I do believe there is magic in the music! There is also some exciting quests in the book as well. A really fun read!
This is the worst Charles de Lint novel I have read. It is straight boiler plate sword and sorcery with none of the originality or imagination that Charles de Lint fans have come to expect.
Excellent writing, as always. I think I would have liked this better if it had been a heck of a lot longer. Everything just felt too crammed in together. Almost like a long short story.
It starts fast, slows down, then speeds back up, I really liked this book, the only thing I didn't like was how slow it was in the beginning of the middle.
Jun 07, 2007 Janet rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Ugh. I stopped reading it after two chapters. It was slow and plodding and the main character was a cliche. I cannot say enough bad things about this book.
JG (The Introverted Reader)
This isn't one of de Lint's "urban fantasy" books. I believe it takes place on an imaginary world. It's good, but I do prefer his urban fantasy.
Reading a lot of de Lint I can definitely see how his writing has developed and improved. This just doesn't live up to his later standards.
Another light, easy Celtic-type fairy tale. Apparently one of his early ones. Not bad, some spots came across a bit Tolkienesque.
A classic 'Quest Story' from my younger days. I have always enjoyed Charles DeLint's works (even the dark ones).
Jennifer Kyrnin
This was a wonderful story. It reminded me of many other fairy stories I've read and was comforting that way.
Well-done, straightforward fantasy novel; apparently de Lint's first published effort.
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Charles de Lint is a Canadian writer of Dutch origins.
More about Charles de Lint...
The Blue Girl (Newford, #15) The Onion Girl (Newford, #11) Dreams Underfoot (Newford, #1) Someplace to Be Flying (Newford, #8) Moonheart

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