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Wyvern

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4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  360 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
Headhunters, sorcerers, pirates and Indian princes thrive in this exciting and poetic tale of a young outcast in Borneo. Born in 1609, son of a native woman and a Dutch sea captain he never knew, Jaki Gefjon grows up in the jungle as a sorcerer’s apprentice. Later kidnapped by pirates, he befriends his captor, Trevor Pym, notorious for his dreaded man-of-war, Wyvern.

The s
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Mass Market Paperback, 693 pages
Published March 1st 1990 by HarperCollins (Mm) (first published 1988)
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(showing 1-30)
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Meggan
Sep 08, 2011 Meggan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, fantasy
I'm done with reading. I quit. I've reached complete fulfillment in Wyvern. Nothing else will ever be this good. Pure perfection.
spikeINflorida
Feb 12, 2017 spikeINflorida rated it it was amazing
"Mothered by the jungle, fathered by the wind, he was half serpent sorcerer and half raptor pirate--a child of lust and deception--the earth aching with the effort of heaven."

A super tasty enchilada stuffed with  Tarzan of the Apes, The Jungle Book, Treasure Island, Arabian Nights, and The Count of Monte Cristo. A fantastic globe-trotting adventure story. Most highly recommended.
Scot
Feb 13, 2013 Scot rated it really liked it
I picked this up as a free Kindle download and was pleasantly surprised to discover what a deep and intelligent adventure novel it is. Although not quite operating on the level of sophisticated cross-cultural analysis one finds in David Mitchell's The Thousand Autumns of Jacob Zoet, that is the closest work I can think of to compare it to--both books will teach you vocabulary, ask you to ponder religions, colonialism, and far-off, exotic cultures, and tell complicated stories of romance and epic ...more
Mea
Feb 07, 2011 Mea rated it it was amazing
This is my current all time favorite book.
It's a rollicking adventure story with heroes and pirates, fantastic creatures and exotic locales. It's fast paced and thrilling from start to finish.
It's a page-turner that kept me up night after night each time I read it.
It's a love story without par, passionate and tragic.
It's got everything I could ask for in a book.
(Not to mention the fact that my version has the most beautiful cover illustration I have ever seen, the one with the spider and the squ
...more
Owen
Dec 19, 2007 Owen rated it it was amazing
Attanasio's brilliant reinterpretation of Tarzan, wherein a young orphan is raised by apes and eventually grows up to be the world's most feared pirate. How can you go wrong with a story about apes and pirates? This is one of the all-time best swashbuckling, two-fisted, read-all-night, make-you-abuse-hyphenation action epics ever!
Kathy
Apr 13, 2014 Kathy rated it really liked it
What a cultural clash! A young boy in Borneo, half Dutch and half Aborigine, is raised by a native sorcerer and trained to follow the ways as a sorcerer and healer. He carries this philosophy and skills through several different changes of his life. From pirate to trader he struggles with the differences between his native beliefs and the hard-learned lessons trying to become more European to fit with his long-dead father's world.

Wonderful detail and excellently crafted. Really brings to life th
...more
Libby Bacon
Mar 24, 2008 Libby Bacon rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. It is epic in proportion. Everyone I shared it with said they didn't like it, but geeze................... it has colonialism, headhunting, shamanism, romance, brutality, world travel, piracy, elephants, and tigers! What more could a romantic ask for? Don’t worry, this is not a romance novel!
Ben
Jun 03, 2008 Ben rated it it was amazing
This book was stunning... I could hardly put it down. Almost a spiritual experience.
Brett
Jan 11, 2017 Brett rated it it was amazing
Read this when it was first published. Loved it. The time has come to read it again.
Christoph Fischer
May 11, 2013 Christoph Fischer rated it really liked it
"Wyvern" is an amazing blend of historical fiction with some elements of the fantasy genre.
Starting in Borneo in the 17th Century, a time when European colonisation has only just taken foot in Asia, the Spanish and the Dutch wars cast their shadow over the area and British and Pirate ships are making the seas a dangerous place.
In the middle of all this are the tribes of Borneo and their own struggles with each other and the intruders. Attracted by alcohol and other imports trade is booming and a
...more
Joe
Mar 25, 2008 Joe rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful adventure. I was in the need for an escape to distant, exotic isles. It has so much packed in. It's jam packed with danger, intrigue, and sweeping epic adventure. And did I mention adventure? Also there is adventure.

I just realized that I never wrote a more full review of this so I have come back to espouse this book's virtues.

I get excited when I come across "lost classics". This is one of those books that should have been a bestseller and wasn't. It should have been huge. But
...more
Laura
Jan 25, 2016 Laura rated it really liked it
Shelves: adventure
Description:
A bold escapade with a young soul-catcher from Borneo kidnapped by pirates in 1609.

Headhunters, sorcerers, pirates and Indian princes thrive in this adventurous, poetic tale of a young outcast in Borneo. Born in 1609, son of a native woman and a Dutch sea captain he never knew, Jaki Gefjon grows up in the jungle as a sorcerer's apprentice. Later kidnapped by pirates, he befriends his captor, Trevor Pym, notorious for his dreaded man-of-war, Wyvern. The scientific marvels on the Euro
...more
Andrea Ika
Jun 16, 2013 Andrea Ika rated it really liked it
Review: Wyvern

AA Attanasio

Title : Wyvern
Author: AA Attanasio
Publisher : Firelords Press
Format : kindle edition
Rating : 4 stars
Source : I received this book in exchange for an honest review.




Book blurb
Headhunters, sorcerers, pirates and Indian princes thrive in this exciting and poetic tale of a young outcast in Borneo. Born in 1609, son of a native woman and a Dutch sea captain he never knew, Jaki Gefjon grows up in the jungle as a sorcerer’s apprentice. Later kidnapped by pirates, he befriend
...more
Eero
Apr 29, 2013 Eero rated it really liked it
This was a fast-paced historical adventure story, the first book I have read from this author, and I liked it. Actually I remember reading a positive review of this book in either Analog or Asimovs way back, when I had a subscription, but didn't have a chance to lay my hands on it until now. Technically, I have not laid my hands on it even now, because digital books do not exist in a physical realm.

The only problem I had was the prose that sometimes felt difficult, perhaps due to English not bei
...more
Max
Nov 28, 2012 Max rated it it was amazing
Greatest book ever written... for me. My spirit is deeply ingrained in every page. Just finished it for the second time after reading it first in my thirties two decades ago. This time I had the pleasure of reading it with my teenage son. He bailed with about 100 pages to go. Couldn't forgive the author for turning it into a love story and eliminating one of the best characters (I won't spoil it by saying which one).

Some see it as pure escapism but I have to strongly disagree. Sure, it's a wonde
...more
Rkb 2014
Apr 21, 2014 Rkb 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kathy-rager
What a cultural clash! A young boy in Borneo, half Dutch and half Aborigine, is raised by a native sorcerer and trained to follow the ways as a sorcerer and healer. He carries this philosophy and skills through several different changes of his life. From pirate to trader he struggles with the differences between his native beliefs and the hard-learned lessons trying to become more European to fit with his long-dead father's world.

Wonderful detail and excellently crafted. Really brings to life th
...more
Megan
May 19, 2013 Megan rated it it was amazing
A sweeping tale of love lost, love found, humanity, magic, jungles... This was the first book I read that really captured my imagination. A young boy, taken from his mother at a very early age to be trained to be a medicine man. His mother killed before his eyes,he has to learn to live without her. In the process, he learns to live without anyone at all. And then, in a not so surprising turn of events learns to live with others, to love and to let go. A vibrant novel full of color and light. I h ...more
Thomas
Kind of an odd bird... An undeniably audacious take on the Swashbuckling Pirate story crossed with a coming of age tale. Lots of fascinating incident, loaded with well-written passages but also larded with a deep mistrust of the world, a cynicism posing as worldliness. By turns fun and depressing, two features that fit nicely together when Larry McMurtry does it that don't seem to work as well here. Intriguing and engaging throuout.
Salam Tims
Aug 20, 2012 Salam Tims rated it it was amazing
"Wyvern" is both a coming-of-age in the jungle tale better than anything Edgar Rice Burroughs ever dreamed up and also a "swash buckling" seagoing saga on a league with "Treasure Island" and "Two Years Before the Mast". In other words, it's a capital-A adventure story that will leave you wanting more. I've read it many times and return to it periodically as a tale worth retelling.
Sunshine
Jul 15, 2012 Sunshine rated it it was amazing
This book is an epic. It will be going on my read-again-many-times shelf. It is lush, exotic, harsh, and shares a tragically beautiful philosophy in a fascinating story of a time period that I hadn't known much about previously.
krin
Oct 17, 2008 krin rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
This was a beautifully written epic story about life, death, love and self-discovery as Jaki Gefjon struggles to unite the teachings of both the jungle and the sea. I especially liked Jaki's interactions with his mentors Jabalwan and later Captain Pym.
Traci
Nov 13, 2012 Traci rated it liked it
So many things happen to Jaki Gefjon in this story it seems as though the story could have been spilt into a series. Although the events in the story are very interesting and keep you reading, the story takes a very long time to come together in the last 5% of the book.
Greg
Sep 09, 2015 Greg rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books. I've read it several times. Great story. Great characters. Rollicking adventure. I'd almost say Jungle Book combined with Pirates of the Caribbean, but that wouldn't do this book justice.
Stacy
Mar 20, 2015 Stacy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Part One, or the first third, of this book was a bit too flowery and drawn out for my taste. The latter two thirds, however, detail an epic whirlwind of a pirate adventure, complete with revenge, fortunes, danger, and love. It's Tarzan meets Pirates of the Caribbean!
Laura
Jun 25, 2012 Laura rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2012
Really compelling story of tragedy, youth, magic, adventure, morals and Love.I both loved and hated the ending and yet i wouldnt have the author change it.

I would really suggest this to any eddings lovers and books alike in this genre.

I will pass this lovely story on.
Lindsay
Feb 09, 2013 Lindsay rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, kindle, 2013
An epic novel ranging from the jungles of Borneo, to the origins of New York, with a journey through India on the way, with pirates and sorcery. Jaki was a fascinating and complex character, and all the characters had depths of light and shade to them.
Jen
Jun 01, 2014 Jen rated it really liked it
Pure escapism - read only once in my teen years so would be interesting if I would still enjoy it now.
Pat
Jul 26, 2015 Pat rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not bad story, not quite believable

Lots of take events on face value and don't question too closely. But then it was an adult fairy tale and not a historical novel. Enjoyed.
Helen Pembrook
Jun 16, 2015 Helen Pembrook rated it it was amazing
A very different story. Does not fit a formula, the characters are 3 dimensional and engaging. Tarzan meets Pirates of the Caribbean but much more.
Jeanne
Oct 20, 2012 Jeanne rated it liked it
This was actually a good book but very different. Finally gave up on it when I found myself avoiding it. Guess it just wasn't my style.
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I’m a novelist and student of the imagination living in Honolulu. Fantasies, visions, hallucinations or whatever we call those irrational powers that illuminate our inner life fascinate me. I’m particularly intrigued by the creative intelligence that scripts our dreams. And I love carrying this soulful energy outside my mind, into the one form that most precisely defines who we are: story.
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“The surgeon tells me that you're a sorcerer," Pym said. "Is that so?"
Jaki looked to the captain with the glare of the masts in his eyes. "Yes."
Pym weighed this disclosure. "You speak with the dead?"
"Yes."
The captain's eyes screwed up intently. "What do they say to you?"
"They don't talk back."
Pym and Mister Blackheart laughed in unison...The captain said, "Mister Blackheart wants to know what kind of sorcerer you are."
Jaki pondered a response and finally said, "I was learning to catch souls before my teacher was killed."
"Souls, eh? And what do you do with them after you catch them?"
"I put them back in their bodies."
"Ah, then you're telling us you're a surgeon.”
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