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The Maker of Universes (World of Tiers, #1)
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The Maker of Universes (World of Tiers #1)

3.89  ·  Rating Details ·  1,252 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
When Robert Wolff found a strange horn in an empty house, he held the key to a different universe. To blow that horn would open up a door through space-time and permit entry to a cosmos whose dimensions and laws were not those our starry galxy knows.
For that other universe was a place of tiers, world upon world piled upon each other like the landings of a sky-piercing moun
Paperback, 191 pages
Published 1965 by Ace Books
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Oct 10, 2009 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: sci fi and fantasy fans of world building
Shelves: sciencefiction
As an exercise in world building, World of Tiers is very interesting. That's about it, though. I enjoyed it on a pulpy quick read level. However, I wouldn't recommend it to anyone looking for a deep involving novel.

The Plot

Robert Wolff is a retired linguistics professor looking at homes to buy in Arizona. While inspecting a room alone, a gate to the world of tiers opens before him. He steps through and finds a world where mermaids and nymphs exist. After a few weeks of eating the food and drin
Oct 23, 2014 Jim rated it really liked it
I'm re-reading this now after finally completing the series. It's been almost 40 years since I first read it, so I'll see if it keeps its 4 star rating (I doubt it), but I HAVE to find out how the entire story winds up.

The re-read was great. There are some holes in the story, but it still stands as a fun, quick read. It's still a fairly unique adventure story that is based on SF, but has some fantasy elements, sort of.
For years, I considered it a good, stand-alone, novel. I still thi
William Clemens
May 05, 2011 William Clemens rated it it was ok
I thought I liked Philip Jose Farmer, I really did, but maybe I am wrong.

I remember being blown away by this series when I first read it many years back, but revisiting it I can't believe how awful some of this is. The writing isn't terrible per se, and the plot is decent. Earthling is transported to another world, cruel overlord has taken over, must climb through the universe to find the creator and take him down. The twist at the end is not a huge surprise, and despite the fantastic creatures
Francesco Galdieri
Philip José Farmer, Il fabbricante di universi (The maker of universe, 1965)

Ennesimo romanzo sugli universi paralleli, del genere che un tempo si sarebbe chiamato Avventura.
Insomma, è scritto bene, c'è azione, ci sono continue scazzottate, assomiglia al classico fantasy gruppo-che-ha-un'impresa-da-compiere, ma non ha nient'altro. Niente di niente. A metà delle circa 250 pagine sbadigliavo e non vedevo l'ora che finisse. Fortunatamente è finito.

Peccato, perché l'inizio che descrive il protagonist

Jul 16, 2013 Steven rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I loved how the book started with a whisper, in a very mundane setting. Also I really loved the orientation sequence to the fantasy world. There was some other good stuff throughout. I have still have a lot of trouble grasping and keeping track of weird fantasy names though, like in the Hobbit. At some point in this book, I found myself reading about centaurs, and I couldn’t remember them being introduced. A little later it was bird knights or something and I couldn’t remember when they had been ...more
Nov 05, 2013 Jack rated it really liked it
Been awhile but I remember searching all over to find (remember) this series, I could only remember kickaha or something like that to go on my search on finding these again... this was before the computer era of everything at your fingertip's.
Fun read kind of like the Amber series but different heh' 4-6 in series and everyone just pulls you along, and end's up in "our" world if I remember right. best be on the re-read shelf'
Dec 04, 2014 Millguy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-prose
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 16, 2011 Traci rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
I have read so many books from this era with this similiar plot. I'm sure you know it well too. The Narnia/Wizard of Oz/Alice in Wonderland theme of a modern day character unsatisfied with life being transported to a magical world. I may have read it before but this is one of the better ones. Nice writing and world building. Doesn't really stand up to current fantasy or science fiction but an above average example of the golden age of pulp. Recommended to both fans of fantasy and science fiction ...more
Anthony Wong
Oct 21, 2013 Anthony Wong rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned
i have not read this author before, in spite of me being a sci fi fan. but having read him now, i am not surprised i do not know this guy. his is in the tradition of rice burroughs, hero landing in a primitive world , and grappling with the villians and the nubile females. the book i got is a compilation of 3 of the novels in this series. i did not like it and could not finish the series. too boring.
Timothy Boyd
Oct 06, 2015 Timothy Boyd rated it really liked it
Great fantasy/SiFi series. Farmer is one of my top 5 favorite writers. Very recommended
Mar 03, 2011 Velvetink rated it really liked it
Shelves: sf-fantasy, z-1960-s
Really liked it when I read it growing up. Have to read it again to comment though.
Dec 22, 2016 TJ rated it liked it
The Maker of Universes, published in 1965, is the first in a series of six books by Philip Jose Farmer called "The World Tiers." The story involves a magic horn that opens up a portal to another world that is layered in tiers. There is then an adventurous journey through the tiers or levels of this world interspersed with fight scenes as the main character encounters obstacles as he tries to reclaim the horn, rescue a kidnapped person and confront the creator or maker of the universe who lives a ...more
Tom Britz
Oct 08, 2016 Tom Britz rated it really liked it
The Maker of Universes is an adventure science fantasy novel. Published in 1965, it doesn't really feel dated, though there are quite a few things I thought wrong with it. The beginning seemed a bit hokey, with the character, Bob Wolfe, who is in his mid to late 60's and married to a shrew of a woman, while looking at a house to buy in Arizona as a retirement home, hears a trumpet call, thought muted as if from far away. Thinking he was losing his mind, he nonetheless opens the door of a closet ...more
Robert Wolff, un anodino sexagenario, y su esposa están buscando nueva residencia. Durante una visita a una vivienda, Wolff vislumbra un mundo asombroso, donde un personaje le ofrece un extraño cuerno. Esto dura breves momento, pero Wolff oculta el cuerno para volver más tarde. Será entonces cuando, al tocar el cuerno, se interne en este nuevo mundo. Y aquí es donde empezarán las aventuras para Wolff, en un universo creado por seres, casi semidioses, poseedores de una avanzada tecnología. La may ...more
Norm Davis
May 21, 2015 Norm Davis rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: It's a classic. Read it.
Recommended to Norm by: It's Philip Jose Farmer, that's enough.
The Maker of Universes, Philip Jose Farmer

Spoiler Alert. Following any hyperlinks could lead to spoilers.

4 stars. As I remember it, ages ago it was 5 stars. And I'm sure it could be either. This is Philip Jose Farmer after all. And this World of Tiers series is one of his best, and The Maker of Universes, is the novel that launched the series. The World of Tiers series was also inspirational for Roger Zelanzy's famous fantasy Amber series.

An author in Philip Jose Farmer's day was in high deman
Chris Gager
Jun 14, 2016 Chris Gager rated it liked it
My niece and her husband recommend PJF to me, particularly the Riverworld series. This is from a different series but free and found from the local transfer station. So far seems reminiscent of "The Time Machine". Well written and engaging. I'm not sure the cover illustration is accurate.

- autenreith? - I'll look it up!

Almost finished last night but bedtime came upon me. It's interesting to compare this with other, similar series of tales that are more or less in the same genre. Dan Simmons' Hyp
Dec 03, 2013 Onefinemess rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Although the word "universes" here is a bit... misused. But, dudes made some crazy ass worlds, so there is that.

I've wanted to read some PJF (can I call him "PJF"?) for ages. His name is one of those greats that always seems to eventually come up in any discussion I read that goes back any length of time. And now I've done so. Huzzah. 'Tis a year for many such huzzahs. Whatever.

So. This was OK. Kinda basic travelogue style fantasy with your typical (now, at least) gateway character that, in this
Jul 31, 2012 Sean rated it really liked it
Shelves: appendix-n
Many who have reviewed this book dismiss it as young adult fiction, but I fear that label functions as a means for them to justify the immersive and original fantasy world that Farmer develops at the expense of more "adult" content such as complex characters or plot.

I enjoy Fantasy and Sword and Sorcery books when they are able to create an original, believable and yet insane world as a backdrop for their characters. It also helps to have some unique monsters, monsters from before Orks became a
Иван Величков
Филип Хосе Фармър е един от основните виновници да се запаля по фентъзито, фантастиката и литературата като цяло. Поредицата му "Светът на нивата", от която това е първата книга е вдъхновила Зелазни да напише любимите на всички "Хроники на Амбър". Лекия приключенски стил и хибридната смеска между фентъзи и фантастика са новаторски за 60-те години, когато е писана, а вкараните еротични елементи са отворили очите на много автори, като Хайнлайн и Резник за новата вълна във фантастиката.
Запознайте с
Jeffrey J
Jul 27, 2012 Jeffrey J rated it really liked it
Shelves: pulp
Upon receiving the recommendation from my brother John, I pulled the 5 book series from the cramped and overstuffed used bookstore shelf a couple of years ago. It's taken that long to whittle down the Read Pile but after finally completing the John Carter Series and EE Smith's Skylark Trilogy, both pre WWII era literature, it looked like a great time to emerse myself in Philip Jose Farmer's World of Tiers.

Having known about Farmer's list of credits; my only other exposure to Farmer was the early
Adam Duclos
Feb 11, 2016 Adam Duclos rated it it was ok
This was an interesting book, but only because it turns out that it inspired another, better book... the first Amber book "Nine Princes in Amber". Otherwise, it was a very boring, old timey sci-fi, with a lot of cringe-worthy racism and blatant misogyny.

Reading through the plot on wikipedia, it seems like such a rich and cool world to explore, but this first book is more like a travelogue, with character development only occurring off screen. For example, the main character's woman is stolen, a
Apr 17, 2014 Ethan rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Brayden Ledbetter
Recommended to Ethan by: My dad
Since this book falls under my favorite genre: Fantasy/Science-fiction, it is biased for me to say I love this book but it is true. This book is part of a six book series and this one, obviously being the first, is a great beginner book to introduce the series. Now I don't want to spoil anything so if you think I might spoil you can stop reading and leave now. The basics you might need to know depending on if you want to go in fresh or not is the main character is Robert Wolff, a retired man wit ...more
May 21, 2013 Olethros rated it liked it
-Aventuras en las formas, futuros rumbos del autor en el fondo.-

Género. Ciencia-Ficción.

Lo que nos cuenta. Robert Wolff es un hombre casado de sesenta y seis años frustrado e insatisfecho que no recuerda, como mínimo, sus primeras dos décadas de vida. Mientras revisa una de las casas cuya compra está considerando, ve imágenes de otro mundo en una pared, en las que un hombre de aspecto salvaje saca notas musicales de un cuerno plateado mientras está rodeado de unas criaturas inhumanas. El salvaj
Christopher Taylor
May 23, 2016 Christopher Taylor rated it really liked it
A fun pulpy novel about a man pulled into another universe where super-powerful technocrats create their own planets to play with. The World of Tiers is the name of this series, with a ziggurat-shaped world, each layer 30,000 high and miles wide containing a different cultural group such as one with knights and lords, one like American plains Indians, etc.

Amnesiac Bob Wolff has to find out what is going on and recover a beautiful girl, with the help of the trickster Kickaha and discover the secr

When Robert Wolff found a strange horn in an empty house, he held the key to a different universe. To blow that horn would open up a door through space-time and permit entry to a cosmos whose dimensions and laws were not those our starry galxy knows.
For that other universe was a place of tiers, world upon world piled upon each other like the landings of a sky-piercing mountain. The one to blow that horn would ascend those steps, from creation to creation, until he would come face to face with th

Desgraciadamente, ha sido bastante decepcionante para mi leer este libro. Mi primer incursion en la obra de Farmer, de su saga mas célebre tras Mundo-Río, y no me ha gustado especialmente.

Los elementos de ciencia ficción son escasos en la mayor parte del libro. La historia tiene un ritmo muy irregular, con no pocos agujeros, y está repleto de momento muy poco creíbles. Tampoco ha ayudado que la traducción que he leido es bastante discutible (o eso, o el libro en si tiene un lenguaje algo pobre).
B. Reese
Jul 06, 2015 B. Reese rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-books
This book was given to me by a friend, and I loved every bit of it. It reads like an Edgar Rice Burroughs novel, but better and the world Farmer has built is beyond amazing. This book starts off with an interesting premise and kicks into an adventure story in short order.

The only part I really found fault with is the ancient astronaut angle, but if you're looking for a well written adventure yarn, this is for you.

I would love to see some fan art, or even a movie (true to the weird design).
Jonathan Oliver
Mar 29, 2012 Jonathan Oliver rated it liked it
I suspect I'd have been better off starting with the Riverworld books, as it is I decided to give The Maker of Universes a go first. There are things to like here - the battle between the Native Americans and the centaurs is a great bit of Fantasy Western - but there is almost too much in the book. Farmer takes the approach of throw everything into the mix and while it makes for certain fun scenes it also makes the plot somewhat garbled. The writing, too, is rather workmanlike. Enjoyable but not ...more
Sean Meriwether
Sep 20, 2011 Sean Meriwether rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
I had a brief introduction to Farmer in high school and have begun reading more of his work. I enjoyed rereading the work I had already read, and not just for nostalgia's sake; the Riverworld series is inventive, fun and original. However, this start to a new series seems like a rehash of the themes he developed much more strongly in that better known series: an elusive god who created a synthetic universe, the absence of death, and oblivious population, and one alien dedicated truth-seeker. Not ...more
Mar 13, 2012 Casey rated it liked it
Fun little book. Very weird and unique. The world building is great though and the characters are decent. There us aime weird pacing here....sometimes after what feels like a long time of setup gets resolved abruptly. Still, its a fun read and most importantly; very unique.

I'll definitely come back for more just to see what other craziness is in store. (My hopes? Wolff in other bizarre universes!)
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Philip José Farmer was an American author, principally known for his science fiction and fantasy novels and short stories. He was born in Terre Haute, Indiana, but spent much of his life in Peoria, Illinois.

Farmer is best known for his Riverworld series and the earlier World of Tiers series. He is noted for his use of sexual and religious themes in his work, his fascination for and reworking of th
More about Philip José Farmer...

Other Books in the Series

World of Tiers (8 books)
  • The Gates of Creation (World of Tiers, #2)
  • A Private Cosmos (World of Tiers #3)
  • Behind the Walls of Terra (World of Tiers, # 4)
  • The Lavalite World (World of Tiers #5)
  • Red Orc's Rage (World of Tiers #6)
  • More Than Fire (World of Tiers, #7)
  • The World of Tiers

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