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The Guns of Avalon

(The Chronicles of Amber #2)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  20,911 ratings  ·  575 reviews
Across the worlds of Shadow, Corwin, prince of blood royal, heir to the throne of Amber, gathers his forces for an assault that will yield up to him the crown that is rightfully his. But, a growing darkness of his own doing threatens his plans, an evil that stretches to the heart of the perfect kingdom itself where the demonic forces of Chaos mass to annihilate Amber and a ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 223 pages
Published April 1986 by Avon Books (first published 1972)
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Average rating 4.15  · 
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 ·  20,911 ratings  ·  575 reviews

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Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
The book picks up right where the previous left. Corwin, being pissed off at his brother Eric for cruel treatment as well as thinking the guy occupied the throne which is his - Corwin's - by right looked for means to dispose of his dear loving relative.
He thought he knew one, but it required extensive shadow traveling. During these travels he learned that a curse of a person of royal Amber blood really meant something. He also got to meet some of his old acquaintances with only a minor part of
Apr 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
*** 4.44 ***

"...“Never trust a relative. It is far worse than trusting strangers.”..."

Corwin, the prince of Amber, is free and plotting. Plotting is the past time of the family, but he has a bit of extra incentive, having been imprisoned and blinded for the last 4-5 years and living is squalor while getting better after his escape. Eric, his eldest brother and currently holder of the throne, wants him dead, but at this moment he and the whole royal family are busy defending the realm and som
Aug 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Corwin escapes after four years of blindness and imprisonment at the hand of his brother Eric who usurped the throne in Amber. His search for vengeance and restoration takes him on a journey through the Shadows that at last brings him to his former homeworld of Avalon, and makes him cross paths with a former servant who hates him with a burning passion and a brother thought long lost.

The Guns of Avalon is in many aspects a massive improvement on Nine Princes in Amber. Zelazny apparently learnt h
Mike (the Paladin)
This was the first volume of this series I read. The Amber of fantasy's best. I stumbled on this not knowing it was a series. Then It was years before I found the first volume (Nine Princes in Amber. Also, this book ends in a somewhat cliffhangerish way and it was years before I got the next volume...

Happily for you, the entire series is there waiting for you. Enjoy.
Stjepan Cobets
Dec 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fan of Fantasy and SF
My rating 4.9

By me, even a better book than the first part. A sequel that just shows how good a series is. Soon I started reading the third book. Just a great book. A book to be read because if you are a fan of science fiction and fantasy genres, this is the very essence of the genre.

Mar 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Picks up right where the first novel ended and is just as fast moving. You learn a lot more about Amber, and Corwin's family ...more
Jul 22, 2013 rated it did not like it
The universe is made of an infinite number of worlds, covering the entire spectrum of probability, but all such worlds are merely shadows of the only true world: Amber.
Princes of Amber are gods in the shadow worlds: they're immortal, strong, fast, clever and capable of creating everything they wish out of sheer will.
Corwin, the protagonist of the chronicles of Amber, is one of those Princes.

What unimaginable intelligence must such a being possess?
What bits of infinite wisdom might he gift to us
Graeme Rodaughan
Jun 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves powerful, evocative, character driven fantasy.
Sheer Genius

Roger Zelazny simply speaks to every aspect of what I want in a story. He nails it, he just nails it. I'm gobsmacked.

This review is brief, because I do not have the words to honor what I've read.

I had to make a new shelf "sheer genius," just for this book.
Nandakishore Varma
Dropping it halfway through - not my cup of tea. I enjoyed the first book of the series, Nine Princes in Amber, in a lukewarm sort of way, and decided to try this in case the story picked up speed. Around page 100 or So, I decided I couldn't care less.

Still, it's not badly written - hence the two stars.
Caro the Helmet Lady
So I guess it should've been called... Eight Princes in Amber? :)) ...more
May 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Just as good as the first one! On to Sign of the Unicorn!
May 07, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
"Now I had to find a place, a place resembling another place -- one which no longer existed. I located the path. I took it."
- Roger Zelazny, The Guns of Avalon


A missing father, siblings that aren't very filial, a dark road, dark circles, a contested thrown, faceless figures, flying daemons, etc. This book has a lot of action and a pretty clear arc. The protagonist has been cast low and is now fighting to regain what he lost (besides just weight) AND gain what he feels is his right (and not just
4.0 to 4.5 stars. Another excellent installment in the Amber Chronicles by Roger Zelazny. The world building continues to impress and the magic system and internal workings of Amber continue to be fleshed out and made real. While not quite as good as my two favorite Zelazny works, Lord of Light and This Immortal, these books are well written and a ton of fun. Highly Recommended!! ...more
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, magic
When push comes to shove all princes put Amber first, and it’s hard not to like them for it!

The pacing of The Guns of Avalon is a bit uneven. Shadows shifting is a neat concept, but I literally fell asleep while Corwin was traveling to the diamond dunes. The beginning and the last few chapters more than made up for the slow spots in the middle though. Corwin is by no means a model of strong moral fiber, and some of his decisions might be questionable, but I can’t believe how he got totally duped
Kat  Hooper
Apr 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Originally posted at FanLit.

Warning, from me: If you haven’t read Nine Princes in Amber yet, don’t read this review.

Another warning, from Corwin: “Never trust a relative. It is far worse than trusting strangers.”

Corwin has escaped from his brother’s prison and he’s ready for revenge. He doesn’t have the manpower that Eric has, so he needs a technological advantage. Traditional firearms don’t work in Amber, but Corwin once noticed that a jewelers’ rouge from the shadow world of Avalon, where he u
A. Dawes
Apr 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Zelazny was one of my go-to writers back in the day. And with the Amber series you were almost always ensured of an entertaining read, with the right dash of complexity so that along with the amusement and intrigue, it also gave the old noggin just enough to chew on.

In this sequel of world hopping fantasy, Prince Corwin prepares to take his rightful throne. But Chaos is also gathering its dark forces... Any reader of fantasy is in for an escapist treat of the highest magnitude.

I'm biased here,
Dec 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: scifi
Even better and more excitng than "The Nine Princes in Amber." Corwin continues his adventures through time and space and gets involved in a complicated political struggle for Amber. Plus Zelazny details more of the back story involving the Courts of Chaos and make up of various realms of the series. Outstandng science fiction fantasy written in concise and beautiful language. Zelazny is an amazing writer. ...more
Dec 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fantasy
Another fine installment of The Chronicles of Amber. This one lulled for me a bit in the middle, but the ending picked up quite a bit and Zelazny's masterful worldbuilding brought my rating back up. ...more
Juho Pohjalainen
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Is reality a shadow?

Every time I seriously ponder this, I can feel everything... fade away a little. Vision blurs, voices echo from afar, bodily aches no longer matter so much, and such. All I sense and perceive is but an illusion fed to me by nerves and neurons - themselves illusions, formed by an evolutionary mass of wet bacon in my head.

So what is real? What is me? If I continue thinking this way and manage to shed everything, what awaits me out there? Is it unconsciousness, or death, or tot
Jul 09, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: epic-fantasy
The second book in the series is pretty much like turning a page in the first book. It is literally like the next day. I seem to be reading small books at the moment.
The writing continues to show its age, the female characters in this story are pasted in and literally have no impact. I think that Random's wife has huge potential, but she still has not made an appearance. This is all about the princes and their warring, whisky drinking exploits.

But even with its flaws, even with the fact that a
Jan 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
While still compelling, it is a little bit of a let down from the first book. The noir element is lost entirely, sci-fi is minimal and this become merely a fun fantasy story. That's fine, I guess. The writing is actually still quite good, but I felt some of what made the first book special is now stripped away. That doesn't stop me from wanting to know what happens. This series may feature the most screwed up families in literature. Still good pulpy stuff. ...more
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Back in the days before Mr. Fogerty inspired Mr. Jordan to expand on his observation that the big wheel keeps on turning, and before Mr. Martin went into the field of meteorology, Roger Zelazny produced this series of five terrific books and thereby offered the fantasy fiction field an alternative to Conan pastiches and Hobbit homages. Amber is the true, real, center of the universe, see, and it's a magical kingdom where the king has gone missing and the nine princes and a handful of princesses ...more
Anita Reads
Jan 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: magic, fantasy, read-2019
[4.5 stars]

This is the continuations of the Amber Chronicles, where in the first book (Nine Princes in Amber) we met Corwin and has followed him as he struggled to find out who he was after having had some sort of amnesia. There’s a bit of a war going on between him and his other brothers. Eric has chosen himself to rule in Amber, but Corwyn wants to put a stop to it, and take over the power for himself.
In this book Corwyn finds himself in Avalon, as he’s on a quest for more answers, and I’m no
Ivana Books Are Magic
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
...and this is how you write a sequel. The Guns of Avalon take up from where Nine Princes in Amber ended brilliantly. The story doesn't slow down a bit, but rather it develops purposefully and dives further into the Amber universe. The plot is well written and there is definite character development on side of Corwin. In the first sequel, Corwin was a charming bastard, a more sophisticated and eloquent version of macho heroes, but in The Guns of Avalon we see a more human side to him. Corwin's i ...more
Dec 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
I'll start this today at lunch. It's a re-read, but a wonderful one. I read Nine Princes in Amber for the Zelazny group & I can't just stop reading the series now, even if I do know how it turns out.

It was well worth the re-read. Even knowing basically what happens, it's still a great read. I get to pay more attention to how Zelazny uses words & that's always a pleasure.

This concentrates on Corwin getting back to his old self after many centuries. We learn more about his family & him. We also v
The 2nd book in Zelazny's Amber series picks up Corwin's story just about where Nine Princes in Amber left off. We visit some Shadows (alternate worlds), find Corwin is the Archetype of whom both King Arthur & Charlemagne are shadows, and we get back to another assault on Amber to settle the succession (or is it regency?) ...more
Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
The Guns of Avalon have also successfully passed the re-read test. Just like Nine Princes in Amber, this novel is a page-turner. I enjoyed the experience of being immersed in the world of Amber and its shadows so much that I read it in one sitting. Zelazny goes more in depth with the worldbuilding and it was fascinating to read about Corwin has caused. Also, (view spoiler) ...more
Dec 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, reviewed
Book Review: 3 Treasure Boxes

The First Chronicles of Amber, includes books 1 - 5

An interesting and compelling concept for a fantasy book and a very different kind of fantasy. Some elements of the story take place in modern times and some elements take place in medieval times. I found the writing to be imaginative and quite deep.

Amber is the only real place upon the real Earth. It is the substance from which all other realities are but a shadow, including the world that we now live in and there a
Carol Evans
Oct 28, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
It was a perfect choice for my mood- quick, fairly short, and lots of adventure.

The Guns of Avalon picks up where Nine Princes in Amber left off. Corwin is determined to fight for the throne of Amber. He has some supplies he needs to collect which takes him to Avalon. While there, he must help fight the creatures of the Circle of Evil, a part of the Dark Road to Chaos that he unleashed on the world, both Amber and Shadow, by his curse.

Once again, Corwin doesn’t know who to trust and how far to t
More of the first volume, without the cumbersome amnesia device. Expressly Arthurian, but with guns. More family dramatics. More platonist wanderings, with the fake realities manifesting to the detriment of the Real. More grotesqueries. More surly siblings. Travel sections wrtten with heavy ellipsis in the style of Celine.

Great passage during the picaresque section regarding how "Half a dozen hairy, albino men, almost completely naked and continuing the process of undressing as they moved, shuf
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Readers also enjoyed

  • Roger Zelazny's Chaos and Amber (The Dawn of Amber, #2)
  • The Gods of Riverworld (Riverworld, #5)
  • Roger Zelazny's The Dawn of Amber (The Dawn of Amber, #1)
  • Roger Zelazny's Shadows of Amber (The Dawn of Amber, #4)
  • Меч без имени (Меч без имени, #1)
  • The Magic Labyrinth (Riverworld, #4)
  • The Legend of Nightfall (Nightfall, #1)
  • Фальшивые зеркала (Лабиринт отражений, #2)
  • Roger Zelazny's To Rule in Amber (The Dawn of Amber, #3)
  • Пересмешник
  • Elric of Melniboné (The Elric Saga, #1)
  • Gilgamesh the King (Gilgamesh, #1)
  • Проклятый горн (Страж, #4)
  • Рыцари Сорока Островов / Мальчик и Тьма
  • Аутодафе (Страж, #2)
  • Tough Times All Over
  • На краю Ойкумены
  • Свирепый ландграф (Меч без имени, #2)
See similar books…
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 dea ...more

Other books in the series

The Chronicles of Amber (10 books)
  • Nine Princes in Amber (The Chronicles of Amber #1)
  • Sign of the Unicorn (The Chronicles of Amber #3)
  • The Hand of Oberon (The Chronicles of Amber #4)
  • The Courts of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber #5)
  • Trumps of Doom (The Chronicles of Amber #6)
  • Blood of Amber (The Chronicles of Amber #7)
  • Sign of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber #8)
  • Knight of Shadows (The Chronicles of Amber #9)
  • Prince of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber #10)

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