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Schepselen van licht en donker
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Schepselen van licht en donker

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  2,434 ratings  ·  96 reviews
Two gods, two houses, one quest & the eternal war between life & death: To save his kingdom, Anubis, Lord of the Dead, sends forth his servant on a mission of vengeance. At the same time, from The House of Life, Osiris sends forth his son, Horus, on the same mission to destroy utterly & forever The Prince Who Was a Thousand.
But neither of these superhuman warr...more
pocket, 178 pages
Published 1980 (first published July 1969)
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Stephen
Zelazny’s stories often leave me scratching my MENTAL JUNK searching for a new means to describe his impressive creative chops. Well, after several brain limbering exercises, I came up with COSMICaweTASTIC SUPERBitude to describe this lesser known but amazing piece. I'm not sure exactly what it means but I think it's something positive.

This is certainly one of Zelazny’s more creative works, which is really saying something given his penchant to WTF his reader with bizarre and unique imagery.
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As...more
Jim
I re-read this in Sep09, armed with some extra knowledge gleaned from two of the 6 book collected works of his. In them, he explains that he wrote this novel as an exercise for himself & never expected to publish it. He was asked for it & was surprised that it did so well.

He said he threw everything he had at this novel, in no particular order. It is an amalgamation of styles, mythologies, SF & Fantasy. Somehow, it really works. That's as amazing as is my fascination for the book, re...more
Manny
Roger Zelazny scored a hit with Lord of Light, a moving SF retelling of Hindu and Buddhist myth. I get the feeling that he thought he should do it again, but that's usually a recipe for disaster. Home Alone is a surprisingly good comedy. Home Alone 2: Lost in New York hovers between dull and embarrassing.

Well, this is Zelazny's Home Alone 2. He's decided to do Egyptian mythology instead of Hindu/Buddhist, but none of the symbols and images gel, there's no plot to speak of, and most of the time i...more
Mark
Zelazny was one of the cleverest of the SF writers emergiing from the 1960s, in the stew of New Wave, and also one of the gutsiest. "Creatures of Light and Darkness" is his riff on Egyptian mythology, set in a "future" wherein the ancient conflicts of the various gods---Anubis, Osiris, Set, Thoth, Isis, and Typhon---are once more met in an ageless attempt to establish who's in charge.

But wait! It's not quite that simple. Set the Destroyer is not just the Egyptian god, but partly Vishnu, who is e...more
Cécile C.
Sep 11, 2009 Cécile C. rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nô and Kabuki lovers
Shelves: science-fiction
Between poetry, SF and acid trip... The plot is somewhat hard to follow, but you can very well read the book without that.

The story works like a kind of impressionist painting, where every short chapter acts as an image rather than a plot fragment. We never learn whose point of view it is and the heroes remain mysterious. As for the plot, it is quite different from the typical SF plot that tries to be extra coherent to compensate for the lack of realism of the setting. Here the characters have...more
Alazzar
If it were legal for novels to participate in Olympic track & field events (stay with me here, I’m going somewhere with this), Creatures of Light and Darkness would win just about anything involving speed. This book is a fast read. Granted, it’s short—only 199 pages—but it’s not the small size of this book that makes it so quick—the blazing pace and blurring page-turns are what put this masterpiece of Egyptian mythology ahead of the pack.

Egyptian mythology—yeah. If you don’t know anything ab...more
Swiderskaya
Another great mix of science, fantasy and mythology from Robert Zelazny - interesting, involute and paradoxical experiment - 'quintessence of chthonic creatures'.
It's not my first Zelazny's book, so I got used to his bizarre way of writing. The plot is average, but sometimes hard to follow. The is no introduction, you get straight into action. The dialogue between Anubis and Wakim about life and death is very philosophical. Interesting concept of the universe, consisting of The House of Life, T...more
Zachary Jernigan
OBJECTIVE RATING (my best stab at looking at the book's merits, regardless of whether or not I enjoyed it all that much): 3.5

PERSONAL RATING (how much the book "worked" for me personally): 5

Creatures of Light and Darkness documents Roger Zelanzy at his most daringly gonzo. It is by no means even close to a perfect work, but it is an immensely interesting work.

Personally, it is the most influential book of my life, largely because of what it attempts to do, which is pretty much every goddamn myt...more
sologdin
Nutshell: standard Z mess with immortals & incomprehensible occurrences.

Volume is sealed by a dedication to Delany, and the text is reminiscent of The Einstein Intersection.

Concerned with the Heliopolitan Ennead: Isis, Osiris & their son Horus; Set & Nephthys; Anubis (offspring of Osiris & Nephthys), and Thoth (son of Set in some variants). Greek Typhon shows up; in Kemetic, Typhon is equated to Seth, but here Typhon is Apophis, possessing qualities of the Abyss (155). Some other...more
Alexander Popov
A version in English is available here.

Ревюто е публикувано за пръв път в онлайн списание "ShadowDance"

Да категоризираш Създания от светлина и мрак на Зелазни е трудна работа. Жанрово, формално, стилистично, всякак. Текстът на пръв (а и на втори) поглед е някак разхвърлян, сякаш под въздействието минимум на леки наркотици. Самият текст при това, ако мога да си позволя такава тежка персонификация; не авторът, макар че съм чувал някакви фенски легенди как Зелазни го бил писал в подобно състояние.

С...more
Alytha
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Yune
Intensely weird. A not-unfamiliar theme of Zelazny's: the powerful borrowing names from a pantheon (in this case, Ancient Egyptian) and striving against each other among worlds. I was warned that this was comparable to Lord of Light, but more experimental. It's indeed less cohesive as a work, but there's a breeziness that makes it more fun, I think.

Deftly written, as is his wont, for all that elements of plot and setting are mosaic-like at times.

"'Human arms are weak,' says Anubis. 'Let these be...more
Erik Graff
Jul 18, 2012 Erik Graff rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: sf
Encountering this book in college got me so interested in Zelazny, then a new writer, that I later went and read, to little good effect, his entire first Amber series. Other than being a good story, the novel works as a refresher course in ancient Egyptian religion and feeds my own interest in making sense out of religion in general. It probably contributed to my switching from a history to a religion major or, at least, its reading was symptomatic ot this trend.
Mike (the Paladin)
I notice this one has a legion of followers. Let me be one of the first to disagree. I read this one some time ago and as a rule I like Zelazny. This book however left me cold. There is an odd distant even, patchy feel to it for me. I didn't care for the story nor it's execution. Still, there are a lot who like it so make up your own mind. I may re-read it at some later date, just because it seems so popular with so many.
Fictionista Du Jour
Honestly, I would have given this two stars.

While I generally like Zelazny's storylines (they tend to all feel like chess match- Amber was a medieval chess set, this was an ancient Egyptian set), this one felt so much more muddled than the Amber series I read previously.

The female characters, rather than just being dynamic bitches, were prop pieces, at best. Which didn't give me a lot the relate to.

The world creations and general descriptions were incredible and lush, and I enjoyed several non-...more
Addy
I wanted to wait a day or two before writing something resembling a review for this book, just because my head was such a mess after reading it (not that it's any better right now) This was my first Zelazny book and to be quite honest, I'm not sure if I can put my love for it into words.

Quite frankly, Creatures of Light and Darkness makes you wonder whether the author was mentally stable while writing it. This book is a mess, a whirlwind, a rollercoaster, call it whatever you want, but it's not...more
Meghan_K
I am immensely specific in tastes when it comes to reading science fiction, so when a good friend of mine highly recommended Roger Zelazny's Creatures of Light and Darkness I internally cringed as he handed the book to me so I could take it home. The cover was lame artistic wise, it was a small ragged looking, yellowing book that had been read ten times over since his dad bought it back in the early 70s and I was ultimately planning on putting it on the back-burner of my reading list.

I didn't, h...more
Sid Fallon
An excerpt from this book. The prose in this book is incredible, but this particular quote was too awesome not share.

"Insofar as I may be heard by anything, which may or may not care what I say, I ask, if it matters, that you be forgiven for anything you may have done or failed to do which requires forgiveness. Conversely, if not forgiveness but something else may be required to insure any possible benefit for which you may eligible after the destruction of your body, I ask that this, whatever i...more
Alex
I think I may love this book, and the reason I do is it has that sort of very sixties speculative fiction (not science fiction!), writer on acid, weirdly formal tone with the sometimes base and violent content that I just can't resist. Better yet, it's not all sound and fury, Zelazny has built up a nice little story here about the ludicrous nature of religion (a theme I'd normally steer the over bright 16 year olds towards so they have something to be obnoxious about), done with this fantastic m...more
Michael
Finished reading this a couple of days ago. I re-read this actually. The first time was over 20 years ago. I read recently that Zelazny wrote this as more of an exercise (it's very poetic, actually one chapter is a poem).
The book is somewhat convoluted but is well worth the read. Zelazny is a great storyteller and usually mixes Science Fiction and Fantasy and this case mythology to make extremely interesting stories. Like his more famous Hugo and Nebula winning novel "Lord of Light", which used...more
Ashuroa
I won’t say the text of the book jacket is intentionally misleading but misleading it certainly is. Not so much in WHAT is actually happening in this book – that much is true – but in how much space it has in this book or how important it is.

Yes, the two warriors are send out into the mortal world but it is not the mortal world we are familiar with. It is a strange, futuristic and at the same time archaic collection of planets / places.

And they are at most minor characters while Toth, Anubis, Os...more
Chris Branch
In Zelazny's defense, I read that he apparently wrote this as an experiment, never really intending it to be published. So how did the experiment turn out? Well, let's see - the book is pretentiously surreal, at many times just plain nonsensical. The characters are bizarrely unlikable, with incomprehensible motivations. The writing is - well, who am I to criticize the writing of a Hugo and Nebula award winner? Yeah, I know: when you're a pro, you've learned all the rules and earned the right to...more
Nicholas Whyte
http://nhw.livejournal.com/490626.html[return][return]Returning to an early favourite for me here. The plot, to be honest, doesn't hold much water: far in the future, the Egyptian deities have returned (or some godlike beings have set themselves up as such) and are in charge of the universe. Various other mythical and cyborg beings drop in on proceedings. But really the book is a delight for the language and the impassioned present tense narrative, which sweeps you along so effectively that you...more
Karlo
I hoped that this would do similar things for me as Lords of Light, but it was not to be. The beginning was very promising, but there is a scene 1/3rd of the way in to the book where a key scene happens 'off camera' that threw me for a loop; a major conflict was side-stepped and it felt like a bit of a cheat to me. The book recovers somewhat thereafter, but the resolution again felt weak to me. The approach seemed to strive of a cyclical ourosbouros kind of feel and it didn't work for me.

I'll sa...more
Trayana
„Създания от светлина и мрак” отваря рана в съзнанието ти, която не може да заздравее, защото постоянно бъркаш с пръст в нея. Докато четеш романа неволно се питаш дали авторът не е пил абсент или ял пейот. А може би е пушил опиум. Или просто геният му излиза извън възприятията ти. По-вероятно е последното.

Четеш първите откъси и оставаш с усещането за секс без оргазъм, макар на няколко пъти да се доближаваш до малката смърт. Неразбирането на сюжета пробива дупка в мозъка ти. Ако си верен поклонни...more
Corwin
Very very hectic, and a bit confusing; this book definitely needed to be a bit longer, so that the cast of characters could be fleshed out some more and the continuity of events made more discernible and followable. Still, it's Zelazny, so it's mighty and mythical — "epic", to use a word I've grown to hate thanks to recent adolescent vernacular abuses of privilege. Can't help but wonder what Typhon is doing in an interpretation of Egyptian mythology, but I'm glad he's there.
Bill Wren
Zelazny didn't intend to publish Creatures of Light and Darkness. It was at the urging of Samuel R. Delany that he did. Depending on your frame of mind when you read this, you may be glad he did publish or, conversely, think Delany was nuts to even make the suggestion.

When I first read the book years ago, I believe I loved it. This time, not so much. It really does read like an experiment in prose (and poetry) and as interesting as it is, the pieces don't hang together well as a coherent narrati...more
Emanuil
По-скоро четири и половина, но не позволяват, а петица не мога да й сложа с чиста съвест, просто защото е шантаво писателско упражнение повече, отколкото е роман. (То и като такова е започнало, но Дилейни разбрал за него и убедил Зелазни да го предложи на Double Day -> посвещението.) Епично-иронично, борави с формата с пълна свобода (да не се бърка с пълна, че дори и частична, овладяност, но подозирам, че Зелазни не го е било грижа много-много за това), афористиката е там, поезията е там (жив...more
Jesse
I always liked fiction that borrows heavily from mythology. Here Zelazny borrows from Greek, Egyptian and Norse mythology melding in elements of both horror and science fiction. The god like characters battle each other for controlling power over the Universe.
Maiya
Fantastic premise, bizarre story, great writing, awful style, meh characters--but largely redeemed by the last few chapters (at least enough to bump it up to 3 stars), though I can't really say why, since they didn't make a whole lot more sense than the rest of the book. Anyways, from what I've read about this being a bit of an experiment, and thanks to the last twenty pages, I may give Zelazny another go...but not until I've forgotten how annoyed I was by the first 150 pages.
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3619
Roger Zelazny made his name with a group of novellas which demonstrated just how intense an emotional charge could be generated by the stock imagery of sf; the most famous of these is 'A Rose for Ecclesiastes' in which a poet struggles to convince dying and sterile Martians that life is worth continuing. Zelazny continued to write excellent short stories throughout his career. Most of his novels d...more
More about Roger Zelazny...
Nine Princes in Amber (Amber Chronicles, #1) The Great Book of Amber (The Chronicles of Amber, #1-10) Lord of Light The Courts of Chaos (Amber Chronicles, #5) The Guns of Avalon (Amber Chronicles, #2)

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“A totally nondenominational prayer: Insofar as I may be heard by anything, which may or may not care what I say, I ask, if it matters, that I be forgiven for anything I may have done or failed to do which requires forgiveness.  Conversely, if not forgiveness but something else may be required to insure any possible benefit for which I may be eligible after the destruction of my body, I ask that this, whatever it may be, be granted or withheld, as the case may be, in such a manner as to insure said benefit. I ask this in my capacity as your elected intermediary between yourself and that which may not be yourself, but which may have an interest in the matter of your receiving as much as it is possible for you to receive of this thing, and which may in some way be influenced by this ceremony. Amen.” 57 likes
“If you ever loved anything in your life, try to remember it. If you ever betrayed anything, pretend for a moment that you have been forgiven. If you ever feared anything, pretend for an instant that those days are gone and will never return. Buy the lie and hold to it for as long as you can. Press your familiar, whatever its name, to your breast and stroke it till it purrs.” 4 likes
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