Nicole's Reviews > The Urth of the New Sun

The Urth of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe
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's review
Apr 12, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: science-fiction
Read from March 25 to April 12, 2011

This might have gotten 5 stars had I read it right after the other four volumes of the series - this book frequently hearkens back to events in earlier books, and I didn't always remember them. This is partly because the books are JAM PACKED with events and characters, and partly because of Wolfe's writing style.

About that style: some authors telegraph "watch carefully! important stuff coming up!" and their work is pretty easy to skim as a result. Wolfe does the exact opposite, deliberately obfuscating the importance of events and making the reader infer the characters' emotions and motivations from their speech and actions. He even comes out and SAYS as much (through Severian). This makes the books tough to follow at times, but more interesting in the long run.

Liked this book a lot, although I couldn't quite make sense of the Apu Punchau denouement which seems extremely crucial. As I said with the others, I think I might get more out of this with future re-reads. What I'd really like is to discuss it in the context of a class, but instead I might have to opt for reading messageboards and seeing other people's interpretations.

A bit afraid to read anything else by Gene Wolfe. It's hard to imagine that other books he's written will live up to this series.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Max (new)

Max I found Soldier of the Mist fascinating. Something like Memento in ancient Greece in book form.

message 2: by Jason (new) - added it

Jason I enjoyed Soldier in the Mist, and Knight/Wizard.

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