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Masters of the Maze

3.35  ·  Rating details ·  52 ratings  ·  10 reviews
The Maze is a pathway between worlds and times. Its Masters know the secret, but decline to interfere. Its Guardians at different levels prevent invasion of one world by the inhabitants of another. But the alien hive-creatures called Chulpex mean to find their way past the Guardians to colonize a new world; and one ordinary, untrained Earthman is catapulted into wild ...more
Paperback, #R-1208, 156 pages
Published July 1965 by Pyramid (first published 1965)
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Average rating 3.35  · 
Rating details
 ·  52 ratings  ·  10 reviews

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Dec 23, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Freemasons, sci fi boys, adventure fans
Recommended to Michael by: Wayne Douglas Barlowe
I'm being unusually subjective in rating this book two stars. In my ratings system (which is primarily based on reading non-fiction), three stars means a book has accomplished what its author set out to do, while two stars is a book that fails in its basic goal in some way. In this case, I suspect that Davidson more or less did what he wanted to, I just didn't enjoy it very much, and it seems to me that "to entertain" would be one of the goals of a novel like this one. It didn't entertain *me* ...more
Derek Davis
Oct 02, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Why do I love this piece of absurdity? Maybe because Davidson did. But most of all because the Chulpex may be the most wonderfully realized alien culture in all of SF. An insect-based aberration in the "maze" of space and time, they act like intelligent insects, not like humans with an exoskeleton. Davidson always knew what he was doing, and when he ran off the track, it was because he chose to.
Eric Simmons
Jan 21, 2013 rated it it was ok
I picked this book up because the aliens, the chulpex were featured in Barlowe's Guide to Extraterrestrials. The Chulpex are a well thought out life form. Despite the fact that they are planning on taking over the Earth, I could sympathize with them a bit. Thier planet was dying they needed a place to live, but come on can't we all just get along.

The story is very hard to follow. Lots of characters many of whom you don't even meet again until the end are whisked in and out of chapters. The first
Steve Rainwater
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
The alien race and premise were interesting but overall, not recommended.

This book is a mixed bag, it had a lot of potential that was never fulfilled. The Chulpex are an interestingly alien species with some intriguing individuals. The idea of the maze itself is fun along with the idea of a secret society on Earth that protects the portals to different worlds and times. And then there are the Masters of the maze themselves, another potentially cool idea.

Yet somehow, all these ideas are turned
Mar 08, 2010 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Contains this paragraph:

'Somewhere in the mass and morass was a chapter and a half of a novel he was looking for. He paused to read an item done on IBM Executive typeface, From the desk of Sydney Sherman. "Once again, as he is obliged too often to, Mr. Sherman finds it needful to draw contributor's attention to his very minimal standards for manuscript presentation. Mr. Sherman does not require manuscripts intended for his establishment to be engraved in copperplate on cream-laid paper with
Dec 14, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I give up. I have been trying to get through this book since I was 12 (or more than 50 years). It lures the reader with its wit and wonderfully rendered aliens. But once in, the reader is lost in a funhouse where plot and character get caught up in a maze that I don't think even the author understood.
Mar 28, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013, science-fiction
Some rushed thoughts more for myself than anyone else:

I'm not very familiar with the author's work but it seems to me he could have done with a better editor. There are quite a few random characters who are introduced who don't seem to do much. It was quite oddly paced.

On the plus side it was a great concept and I liked the sequences towards the end. I also thought the aliens were well thought out.
Sep 11, 2015 rated it liked it
This book is completely mad, and makes no sense at all. What was the purpose of the dancing Minotaurs? Why did the temple of the Heavenly Wang disappear into nothing? Why was the giant insect pretending to be a goblin? You'll never read anything else like this, but not necessarily in a good way.
Jeff Goetter
I really had trouble trying to keep straight who was who and what happen where
Sep 01, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
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Avram Davidson was an American Jewish writer of fantasy fiction, science fiction, and crime fiction, as well as the author of many stories that do not fit into a genre niche. He won a Hugo Award and three World Fantasy Awards in the science fiction and fantasy genre, a World Fantasy Life Achievement award, and a Queen's Award and an Edgar Award in the mystery genre. Davidson edited The Magazine of ...more