Somewhere along the line as I read this book, I lost track of exactly who was allied with whom, and when I reached the end of the book I had only a vague notion of what was going on. I considered giving up on the series, but I'd honestly begun to enjoy Zelazny's writing -- so instead, I went back and reread a couple of key chapters, forcing myself to pay closer attention to the various motivations, suspicious and confessions of the characters.
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And this time, I finished the book looking forward to the next one, wanting to know what will happen next. This first hardcover edition is signed by Roger Zelazny. View all 3 comments. Apr 02, OhWell rated it it was amazing Shelves: magic , fantasy. But those who have do seem to get. Some spiritual form of compound interest, I suppose. And it very well summarizes the entire story. Talking about quotable quotes, I loved the entire conversation between Corwin and Random in the first chapter, I just had to refrain from adding it here due to spoilers and lack of space.
I have to confess I grew very fond of Random by the end "Of troubles I considered myself amply possessed. I have to confess I grew very fond of Random by the end of the book. Some pieces of the puzzle have started falling into place. I loved the twists, humour, turns of phrase and overall subtlety of the writing. A pity… On a related topic, I was searching the Internet for Corwin and Random and stumbled upon a birth announcement for a Random Corwin.
Cool name! Even the title on Goodreads doesn't mention a series number, so I thought it was a stand alone book set in the "world of Amber. Still, I felt too thrown into this world. Then, I did more digging and realized that this is, in fact, in a series. Book Three, to be exact. That made much more sense. I had a dilemma--keep reading this book and go from there or stop and begin with Book One. I chose to keep reading since I was already at least halfway through. I'm glad I did, and now I'd like to go back to the beginning of the series.
Even being thrown in, I'm fascinated by this world that Zelazny created. I can see why the Amber books are his most popular. The world is complex, and I love the concepts he uses like the Trumps, the Pattern, and Shadow. I also really like the characters and their tangled connections.
The story is interesting although there is a lot of explication. I wonder if Zelazny knew he'd write so many Amber books or if he planned to stop shortly after this third one, which does end on a cliffhanger, so it was clearly meant to be followed by at least one book. Still, it provides a lot of answers to questions I'm presuming build up from Books One and Two.
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The way I see it is that this book answers past questions and now begins the actual plot that Zelazny needed to build up to. Of course, I could be wrong not having read the first two books, but not much actually happens in this one until the end, which is very packed with action and conflict. I will definitely be reading the first two books in the series and Book Four. I don't know if I'll read more after that, but I liked this one enough to want to know more before and after.
It's a very genre'd book, so if you're not already a fan of this genre, you won't be able to get into it. Also, as a side note, I haven't read much sci-fi, and it took me time to get adjusted to the style, but I really enjoyed Zelazny's take on the genre, and I like the blend of genres in that there are clear fantasy tropes see title , but the modern references to things like cars and other contemporary at the time of publication elements place it outside of fantasy as well. Overall, I like the book and can't wait to write a more well-informed review of Books One, Two, and Four, at least!
Jul 18, Kylie rated it liked it. I enjoyed this one a little more than the previous two because we got to see all of the siblings together, which made for a "Clue" board game who-done-it feeling. Apr 28, Kat Hooper rated it liked it Shelves: audiobook. At the end of the previous novel, The Guns of Avalon, Corwin finally got what he wanted: Eric off the throne.
Corwin is now the regent of Amber by legitimate claim and he holds the Jewel of Judgment which has powers over the weather and, as Corwin learns, other powers that may be dangerous to its owner. The forces of Chaos are crossing into Amber from the shadow worlds, and they must be stopped. One of them has just been murdered and someone is trying to frame Corwin. During the fallout, other murder attempts occur. During his interactions with them he learns a lot of the history that he has been unaware of while spending centuries on Earth without his memory of Amber.
These stories slow the action but serve to enlighten us further about Amber, the Shadow worlds, how the trumps and the pattern work, the alliances between the siblings, how Corwin lost his memories, and what may have happened to their father Oberon.
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Instead of the answers he wants, he receives ominous visions which suggest that the real truth is even more frightening than the petty sibling rivalries Corwin has been dealing with. Things slow down a bit during this installment while the siblings tell their stories, but there are lots of revelations and plot twists to make up for that.
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Each installment is rather short only 5 or 6 hours on audio which was usual for fantasy novels published back in Some of them had been previously serialized before being released in book form. Alessandro Juliani does a great job with the narration — I really like him.
Feb 25, Nita rated it liked it. This book is a lot different to the previous 2 in the series. Sign of the Unicorn reads more as a mystery, 'whodunit' novel. The overall plot for the series builds very little until nearer to the end and so the book felt somewhat like a filler. I'm not quite sure that there was much point to a lot that happened. We get to know a little more about Corwin's brothers and sisters, and there are a couple new appearances. Dec 05, Mir rated it it was amazing Shelves: fantasy , parallel-dimensions. I would rather have Sign of the Unicorn than all the boys in the Valleys.
Nov 04, Martina rated it it was amazing Shelves: fantasy. Sign of the Unicorn is even better than I remember. From start to finish, the book is packed with action, intrigue, new lore and new revelations popping up left, right and center. There is never a dull moment in this book and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
I also appreciate the shift in tone in this novel. After Corwin was left de facto on the throne at the end of the previous installment, one has to wonder what will happen next. Corwin had attained his greatest desire before we reached the half-mark of the Wow. Zelazny doesn't disappoint in that department. Corwin and the readers soon learn that things are not that simple. Throughout the novel we find out bits and pieces of new information that shed light on the events prior to and during the previous two books. The battle for the throne of Amber has started long since Corwin joined the game again and it was interesting to see Corwin in the role of a character to whom things are happening.
It's an interesting contrast to the previous two books, where Corwin was setting the plot in motion or so we thought. I also liked that the majority of Corwin's siblings had prolonged appearances in this book, which fleshed them out considerably.
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There is hardly anything worth criticizing in this novel; I truly enjoyed everything from the worldbuilding to the thoughtful themes. May 19, Anna rated it really liked it Shelves: fantasy , read-more-than-once , favorites , read-in-russian , read-in-english , male-author , american , , the-big-reread The exposition at the beginning is slightly tiresome but then the action picks up. As usual, Zelazny's inventiveness is what makes this series so great.
I can't say that I've read a lot of fantasy in my life but this is certainly the most fascinating worldbuilding that I've ever encountered. Jul 14, Dan Norton rated it it was ok. This third book in The Chronicles of Amber is better than the first two were, but in my opinion that's not saying much. The book's narrative was greatly strengthened by the fact that there was much less action and less frantic motion in this novel than in its predecessors. It says volumes though when a book series is improved by adding a book in which almost nothing happens.
Instead, the book was something of a murder mystery vibe which does a great job allowing the reader to catch up with the m This third book in The Chronicles of Amber is better than the first two were, but in my opinion that's not saying much. Instead, the book was something of a murder mystery vibe which does a great job allowing the reader to catch up with the many unanswered questions from the previous two novels. This review will strive to point out the best part of the book, the worst part, and 2 speculations as to Zelazny's writing style and intent in these works.
Let's start with the best part of the book. The second chapter in this book was the first, and so far in my experience only, chapter to be told from a different perspective than Corwin's. Random's chapter wasn't pretentious like Corwin's narratives had been, but it was self-deprecating and funny while still relaying important plot information and building the universe of the novels. I recognize that Random's style could never have carried a 10 novel series, but it was a refreshing change of pace which gave me hope for the continued growth of this series.
Now for the worst. The sudden introduction of this location though doesn't bother me. The descriptions of it do.