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A Fish Dinner in Memison (The Zimiamvian Trilogy, #2)
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A Fish Dinner in Memison (The Zimiamvian Trilogy #2)

3.6  ·  Rating Details ·  167 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
In this second book of the Zimiamvian Trilogy, the royal guests at A Fish Dinner in Memison amuse themselves with the creation of a sadly flawed world … and in an instant spend a lifetime in it.
Paperback, 319 pages
Published July 1st 1978 by Ballantine Books (first published 1941)
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Dec 27, 2014 Joseph rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
OK, this gets a bit … complicated …

The previous book in the series, Mistress of Mistresses, opened in our own world with the funeral of Lessingham, an older gentleman who’d apparently done great things in his youth. The scene then shifted to Zimiamvia where the death of King Mezentius and, in fairly short order, his son King Styllis has set off a dynastic struggle between Mezentius’ bastard son Barganax (basically a decent guy) and Mezentius’ daughter, the reigning Queen Antiope (supported by th
Jan 02, 2010 Michael marked it as reading-paused
Shelves: fantasy
I'm only so far as the prefatory letter Eddison wrote in explanation of the philosophy which underlies his Zimiamvian trilogy, but having read Mistress of Mistresses: A Vision of Zimiamvia a few times, I see (possibly indistinctly) where he's coming from, although I'm not sure if I agree.

He says that the universe is built upon a dualistic male-female axis, the male pole (no pun intended) being Truth, which creates, sustains and is sustained and enchanted (he actually says 'enslaved') by the femi
Simon Mcleish
Jan 21, 2013 Simon Mcleish rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Originally published on my blog here in June 2002.

The second of Eddison's Zimianvian trilogy is the most difficult of his novels to read, though it is well worth the effort. It has much more to do with the aims of his writing than Mistress of Mistresses, where the hinds about what is being done can easily be ignored, and the unfinished and in many parts skeletal nature of The Mezentian Gate make the underlying ideas far more obvious. The trilogy as a whole has an extremely unusual and rather dis
Edward Butler
Eddison's trademark "ouroboros" narrative structure works better here than in Mistress of Mistresses, and the philosophical reflections in it are more mature, even if the theological reflections remain a bit puerile. Eddison's characters are never robust enough to hold up the formal structure of his books, though. Lessingham, his alter ego, comes off here as the worst sort of Mary Sue: great painter, great diplomat, mountaineer, most interesting man in the world. He also spouts off at one point ...more
May 17, 2011 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, top-100
While Eddison's earlier works demonstrate his skill with language and story telling, they lack the depth that makes this story so compelling. In this book, the author turns his attention to bigger themes - time, deity and personality among others - and presents a fantasy that sheds light on reality. I disagree with a number of his views but Eddison has clearly thought deeply and presents a compelling tale that never descends into allegory and retains the integrity of the tale. It's rare that I'v ...more
Jul 06, 2014 James rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Though this book has the rich and beautiful prose that I have come to expect from Eddison, it is easily my least favorite of his Zimiamvian trilogy. Eddison often spends large amounts of space describing a scene or having his characters go into long metaphysical dialogues. But this book spends way too much time with these things, particularly with the latter. I enjoy some of these discussions concerning mystical philosophy. But the former books in this trilogy also had battles and political intr ...more
Peter Haslehurst
There's a horrendous superman philosophy at the heart of this book – those lucky few who are rich and beautiful and powerful are incarnations of God or Aphrodite, and the rest of us are toys for their amusement. So this is pretty repellant, especially as it goes with some conservative or downright fascistic politics. Also, the swooning descriptions of women's outfits, hairdo's, jewellery, and mockingly curling lips began to get weary after a while. And yet.... no-one can describe a mountain suns ...more
Aug 17, 2012 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredibly stylish, detailed and complex, I'll need to reread to fully understand the relationships between the two parallel worlds, but I'm looking forward to it. Great!
(review of the full series in Zimiamvia: A Trilogy)
Matthu Stull
Dec 06, 2010 Matthu Stull is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
i really loved "The Worm Ouroboros", so I'm hoping this will be slightly close to similary groovy! not nearly as good, hmmm, i think maybe the introduction was the best part
Mar 17, 2008 Jeff rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Dense reading, but if you enjoy Eddison's style, keep at it.
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Eric Rücker Eddison was an English civil servant and author, writing under the name "E.R. Eddison."
More about E.R. Eddison...

Other Books in the Series

The Zimiamvian Trilogy (3 books)
  • Mistress of Mistresses
  • The Mezentian Gate

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“Ultimate truths are to be attained, if at all, in some immediate way: by vision rather than by ratiocination.” 1 likes
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