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The Bull and the Spear

(Corum #4)

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  1,272 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Cover Illustration: Chris Achilleos
Paperback, 150 pages
Published 1976 by Orbit Books (first published April 1st 1973)
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3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,272 ratings  ·  34 reviews


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Mark Lawrence
Feb 18, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was published in 1973, my copy dates from 1976, and I acquired it from a second-hand book shop in 1979.

This is a slim book that makes my own relatively short debut seem positively bulky. I estimate it at 50-60,000 words, and given that Moorcock could write 15,000 words in a day, I can well believe his claim to have written many of these eternal champion books in a couple of weeks.

The Corum books, along with Elric & Hawkmoon, are highlights of my early fantasy reading and I've avoid
...more
Bill  Kerwin
Sep 17, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy

The second Corum trilogy begins with our aging one-eyed, one-handed hero being summoned into a future world (which looks a lot like ancient Ireland) to battle seven powerful interlopers from another plane.

Echoes of old Gaelic mythology abound, and—as usual—the writing is brisk, the tone is brooding, and the world view pessimistic and complex.
Bookwraiths
Jul 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved everything about this story. The continuation of Corum’s saga is well thought out, consistent, and fitting; Moorcock doing a wonderful job setting up our champion’s emotional state at the beginning of the tale the seamlessly inserting him into a new environment with shadowy villains, who are even more compelling than the Chaos Lords from the first trilogy. Definitely, the book is quite short, yet it is powerful, has its far share of philosophical interludes and is just damn entertaining. T ...more
Tony
Apr 10, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Much as I love Moorcock, this does seem a little like the tale has been stretched rather thin. A little transparent.

Good, but more of the same when the opportunity existed to develop the character further than this.
kostas  vamvoukakis
αλλη μια πολυ ωραια περιπετεια ηρωικης φαντασιας του κορουμ. απολυτα ψυχαγωγικη λιτη με ωραιες εικονες...λιγο πιο παιδικη απο τις προηγουνενες αλλα διασκεδαστικη...
Kostas
6/10

‘The Bull and the Spear’ continues with the second chronicles of Corum, but his adventures, yet again, are only just beginninig as he will have to travel through a, much, changed world in a quest for the magical Spear.

The story picks up a few decades after ‘The King of the Swords’ with Corum starting his new adventures, but this time it didn’t hold me as much as the previous books in the series. It felt a lot like Moorcock was telling the same and same things again, only with a different ene
...more
Ahmed Al-Mahdi
Nov 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dark-fantasy, fantasy
ثلاثية جديدة للبطل كورم أحد تجليات البطل الأبدي لدى مايكل موركوك، تبدأ أحداث هذا الجزء مباشرةً بعد نهاية الثلاثية الأولى، إلا أن كورم يتم استدعاءه إلى المستقبل من البشر، أو "المابدن" في هذا العالم، فبعد بطولة كورم في مواجهة آلهة الفوضى يصبح في أساطير البشر إلهًا بدوره، "كورم الإله ذو اليد الفضية" وتقع أحداث الثلاثية الجديدة في المستقبل البعيد بعد آلاف السنين وربما ملايين السنين بعد دورة جديدة من الزمن حيث يتدمر العوالم المليون ويتشكلون مرةً أخرى، العالم يواجه خطر جديد، وآلهة جدد قادمين من عالم " ...more
Andy Wixon
I read an interview with Michael Moorcock where he revealed the secrets of his art: deciding that as he could write 15,000 words a day, it would be lazy not to, he set that as a target and proceeded to knock out two new books a week.

For me, this explains the prolific nature of Moorcock's fantasy output, but also something of its tone: the vague sense that the author is on some sort of autopilot (perhaps in a creative trance would be a more flattering way of putting it) and the odd insubstantiali
...more
Fredrick Danysh
Corun has greatly out lived his human mate, Rhalina. He uses his powers as a god to travel though time to aid the descendants of Rhalina who are being persecuted by giant gods. The Black Bull has the powers necessary has the powers to defeat monsters but a epic journey is required to harness those powers.
Kate Sherrod
Mar 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's official. I like Corum best of all the Eternal Champions. It's fascinating how he's shed so many of the accoutrements of his identity as he's gone along. I miss Jhary & Whiskers though.
David Hewitt
Mar 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my favorite so far of the Corum books, partly because it's so thoroughly grounded in Irish mythology, and partly because structurally it felt a little more unified, a little less of a whatever-came-to-mind-at-the-moment pastiche than some of the previous books.

Moorcock did emo before emo was emo, before emo was cool, and he does it well by keeping it under control--an undertone of hopelessness, a hero who's resigned to the callousness of fate and at some points wants (literally) to jus
...more
Jason
Jul 10, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I keep reading the Corum books because they're there, but they're not very good. The big plot twists are ridiculous - at one point Corum has to trade a spear which will kill a god for a horn that's not his, and then in order to make it up to this evil wizard he has to trade this horn for ... his cloak, so he gets cold later, and this is a big deal. The pacing is awful - the author advances the plot decades at will while then going into long, winding speeches about Fate that no one's ever given b ...more
David Cozens
Seven hideous giants are destroying a mythical Earth with their cold.
Simon Mcleish
Jul 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Originally published on my blog here in July 2000.

The start of this novel is very melancholy. Several decades after the end of the Swords trilogy, the immortal Corum has sunk into lethargy after the death of his beloved human wife, Rhalina. He starts experiencing strange dreams, and finally allows himself to be taken far into the future by a mystical incantation. The people who have called him, half-believing, are driven by desperation. The world is under attack by mysterious non-sentient beings
...more
Fantasy Literature
4 stars from Brad, read the full review at FANTASY LITERATURE

This review contains spoilers for the first three books in the Corum series.


Michael Moorcock’s CORUM series is comprised of two trilogies. In the first trilogy, Corum defeated the three Chaos rulers of the fifteen planes, giving Law back much of its lost power and thereby restoring the Balance. Starting eighty years later, the second trilogy starts with The Bull and the Spear (1973). As the book starts, we find that Corum has lived in
...more
Rick
Book Four of the Chronicles of Corum doesn't exactly pick up where Book Three left off. In fact, a great deal of time has past. A duration that has left Prince Corum as melancholy as, perhaps, a certain Danish prince of Shakespearean renown. Thus begins a new cycle of tragedy and triumph for this Celtic myth inspired incarnation of Michael Moorcock's Eternal Champion. This first stage of the cycle sets Corum on a quest to find a legendary spear that will control a giant bull that will, or so leg ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
This trilogy is a much darker trilogy that the first (and that's saying something) In these if you're familiar with Irish folklore I think you'll recognize a retelling of the Nuada or Silver Arm or Silver Hand, (King of the Tuatha Dé Danann) legend.

Corum not being human has had to face the fact that he outlives any mortal be may love. Now again faced with a danger he must deal with he feels very alone, and is very vulnerable. These are much darker than the first trilogy (as I said) and the fact
...more
Shannon Appelcline
Dec 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This is perhaps my favorite of the Corum novels. It takes the slight Celtic theming of the original trilogy and cranks it up to 11, really drenching the stories in the Matter of Ireland, while still creating an original story that feels like it's a party of the Eternal Champion mythos. Besides that, the story itself is a typical quest, well told, with a very mythic ending that I love.
Gileblit
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: español
La primera entrega de la segunda saga de Córum está repleta de guiños a todos aquellos que conocen la mitología celta, sobre todo la leyenda de Nuada de la Mano de Plata y la segunda batalla de Mag Thuired. Una obra que se yergue como homenaje a Yeats y al Multiverso más Moorcockiano, lectura imprescindible para los fans tanto de la mitología como del Príncipe de la Túnica Escarlata.
Colin
Aug 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another great book in the series of Corum books - this one has strong influences from Celtic mythology, and elements of myth are woven with great skill into the sword-and-sorcery world of Corum . . . great stuff!
Sim
Mar 31, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book, its obviously pure fantasy and obviously with the classic antihero of Moorcock's books. An easy and short read, it has enough of action and enough of description. A good buy, even its just for the weirdness.
Donny Swords
Feb 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Solid Fantasy

Prince Corum of the Scarlet Robe sets out on a quest to rescue a doomed people...
I enjoyed this book and loved the ending. Michael Moorcock's characters fascinate and his ability to write great battles doesn't fail here. I highly recommend this author.
Bryn Hammond
Apr 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: imagined-fiction
Nostalgia. I had a Corum phase. This is the one that stands out in my memory, though I've forgotten the plot.
Arax Miltiadous
και εκει που προβληματίστηκα να δω επιστρέφει ανανεωμένος και τολμηρός όσο ποτέ!
Hirosasazaki Sasazaki
much better than Twilight.
Timothy Boyd
Jan 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first set of the Eternal Champion books I read. Very interesting, very tortured main character. Great fantasy set. Highly recommended.
Charles
Jul 18, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
A Corum book. Enjoyable.
Paul
Jul 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great adventure for Corum as he travels beyond his time and realm to help humans who view him as a demi-god. He must find a magical spear and summon the Black Bull in order to save the world.
Jason Peters
Fun, quick read. Definitely had a slightly lighter tone than the previous Corum trilogy.
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2,221 followers
Michael John Moorcock is an English writer primarily of science fiction and fantasy who has also published a number of literary novels.
Moorcock has mentioned The Gods of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs, The Apple Cart by George Bernard Shaw and The Constable of St. Nicholas by Edward Lester Arnold as the first three books which captured his imagination. He became editor of Tarzan Adventures in 1956,
...more

Other books in the series

Corum (6 books)
  • The Knight of the Swords (Corum, #1)
  • The Queen of the Swords (Corum, #2)
  • The King of the Swords (Corum, #3)
  • The Oak and the Ram (Corum, #5)
  • The Sword and the Stallion (Corum, #6)