The Throme of the Erril of Sherill: With the Harrowing of the Dragon of Hoarsbreath
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The Throme of the Erril of Sherill: With the Harrowing of the Dragon of Hoarsbreath

3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  402 ratings  ·  21 reviews
A knight goes in quest of the non-existent throme of the Erril of Sherill since the king will not allow his daughter to marry without it.
Paperback, 176 pages
Published August 15th 1987 by Ace Books (first published 1973)
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Dec 26, 2011 Michele rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
McKillip's books are often more like poetry than prose, this one more so than most. The story is more like a fable or fairy tale than a fantasy novel, but none the less enjoyable for that. A brave Cnite goes on a quest for a mythical object (the Throme), the price set by the King for his daughter's hand. En route the Cnite loses his traditional accoutrements (horse, sword, armor) but acquires magical replacements (a dog that breathes fire, a golden harp, a cloak of leaves) and, in a sort of high...more
The Throme of the Erril of Sherill is perhaps one of the oddest titles I've ever come across, and the cover for my edition features typically ugly eighties fantasy cover art. I'm sure I would never have picked it up if I weren't such a fan of the author, Patricia McKillip. But oh, I am so glad I did.

Throme is one of her earliest books, and unlike most of her later works, it's not a novel, but more of a novella or a chapter book. Like the fantasies of George MacDonald (The Princess and the Goblin...more
I don't know where I got hold of a copy of The Throme of The Erril of Sherrill as a standalone. I have seen such, but I think it was in a library.

This version is bound with the Harrowing of the Dragon of Hoarsbreath: which is not bad in itself, but is not up to the standard of the first story.

The language in this book is full of obsolete and archaic terms (for example, 'norange' is the original form of the name of the fruit. The change came about through the migration of the 'n' to the indefinit...more
Althea Ann
Two short but beautiful fairy tales in one volume.

The first is traditional in feel - a young man is in love with the princess, but before he will give his daughter in marriage, the jealous and possessive king sends him on a hopeless quest to find the Throme - a poem of legendary beauty that everyone knows is just that - only a legend.
Simple, but heavy on metaphor (and moral), the tale is perfectly structured, and wonderful to read.
Definitely comes out of the time's "peace and love" philosophy, t...more
I recently reread the Harrowing of the Dragon of Hoarsbreath with my 9-year old daughter. She loved it, though there were a lot of words and concepts that needed explanation. Some of the main points in the book--such as what happened to the island and exactly why, don't get said clearly in the writing; you probably have to read it twice to get meaning. In that respect, it suffers from a lack of clarity that other classic youth writers like C.S. Lewis were gifte with. My 9-year old didn't like th...more
James Oden
I love Patricia A. McKillip's writing. It's always so picturesque and seems to speak to something deeper than this world. This short story is no exception. This particular one is a simple short story with a twist. It may even be a re-telling of another story; I'm not sure. It was a pleasant diversion.

A second short story was contained within, though, that I think I liked better. It was called "The harrowing of the dragon hoarsbreath". This story by Judith Mitchell drew me further into it. I coul...more
This is a very short read, but it's such a sweet story. It's actually two stories in one; I had already read the second one before, and it's also very good. The Throme of the Erril of Sherill is about a knight on a quest for a mysterious throme. Retrieving it is the only way he can be with his lady love. The Harrowing of the Dragon of Hoarsbreath is different from the first story in that there is a more menace and the stakes feel higher. I will definitely read both of these stories again, and an...more
Douglas Cootey
I found this book fascinating more for the peek into McKillip's development as a writer than for the stories themselves. The prose was sometimes so floral that the narrative seemed tangled and hidden. Ofttimes scenes were beautifully painted, but lacking in concrete details—as if the purpose of the story was the words themselves. Yet the scope of imagination revealed in these two tales made them worthy stories to read. Here was a mind at the beginning of its career that was unlike anything that...more
This book is totally random but I really liked the story. It was a very quick read and felt like a Grimm's fairy tale only a little longer. It was a very imaginative story and just really fun.

The second story that was also included in the book, "The Harrowing of the Dragon of Hoarsbreath" was good as well but I didn't like the ending. It just felt too abrupt and I was left wondering what was going to happen to the characters.
Annie Flanders
This book -The Throme of the Erril of Sherill - is QUITE delightful. It is a wonderful quest novel.

Living in the Bay Area I felt fortunate that I was able to go to so many science fiction conventions and met so many of the authors that I have listed her on Goodreads. Patricia A McKillip was one of those authors. She is a very lovely lady.

This was a short, beautiful tale. I love how McKillip's battles are always more about a change of paradigm, or a force of will. The prose is gorgeous, even the author's description of something intended to be ugly is breath-taking. The quest was fantastic in form and the characters met along the way, and the conclusion was so sweet and satisfying.
The first story I happily chuckled my way through, and the second I found very sad. Both are wonderful stories.

While the stories are written for a younger audience, there's enough depth to them to appeal to adults as well. And, of course, McKillip's lovely writing style makes it even better.
Both fantasy stories are fascinating and full of mind-blowing poetic metaphors. In the second story (also collected in Harrowing the Dragon) McKillip builds an entire lore of Dragons in just about 40 pages! I'm impressed.
The bittersweet endings are probably not for everyone though.
Oh, a treat, McKillip with great illustrations and it is (sort of) a joke. McKillip at her most lyrical and flowing and fantastical and it´s all meant with humour. Bah indeed, and yay for the King´s Damsen and her speech ( though the Dagon must be returned obviously). So lovely!
I don't remember exactly how old I was when I read this (maybe 8) but I think it was a bit over my head... I could tell it was humorous, and I did think it was funny, but it was also a bit surreal and confusing to me. I'll have to try it again now that I'm grown up.
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Mar 14, 2013 Nighteye rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Mckillip and fairytale-readers
Shelves: favorites
A nice illustrated book with two small stories in it, beautifully written and with good imagination, like two fairytales :)
A fun tale. Short and sweet. It didn't leave me fuzzy-headed like some of McKillip's other, more dreamlike stories.
Maureen E
A children’s book. Not particularly my favorite, but nothing wrong with it. [Dec. 2008]
Carla *Jen7waters*
Feb 18, 2010 Carla *Jen7waters* marked it as wishlist
Harrowing the Dragon by Patricia A. McKillip (2006)
Poetry and sneaky, snarky humor.
Karen is currently reading it
Sep 02, 2014
Sarah Epperson
Sarah Epperson marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2014
Echo marked it as to-read
Aug 03, 2014
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Patricia Anne McKillip is an American author of fantasy and science fiction novels, distinguished by lyrical, delicate prose and careful attention to detail and characterization. She is a past winner of the World Fantasy Award and Locus Award, and she lives in Oregon. Most of her recent novels have cover paintings by Kinuko Y. Craft. She is married to David Lunde, a poet.

According to Fantasy Book...more
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