The Eyes of the Overworld

Jack Vance


The Eyes of the Overworld

The Eyes of the Overworld

  • Title: The Eyes of the Overworld
  • Author: Jack Vance
  • ISBN: 9780839823667
  • Page: 478
  • Format: Hardcover

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The Eyes of the Overworld is the first of Vance s picaresque novels about the scoundrel Cugel Here he is sent by a magician he has wronged to a distant unknown country to retrieve magical lenses that reveal the Overworld Conniving to steal the lenses, he escapes and, goaded by a homesick monster magically attached to his liver, starts to find his way home to Almery TheThe Eyes of the Overworld is the first of Vance s picaresque novels about the scoundrel Cugel Here he is sent by a magician he has wronged to a distant unknown country to retrieve magical lenses that reveal the Overworld Conniving to steal the lenses, he escapes and, goaded by a homesick monster magically attached to his liver, starts to find his way home to Almery The journey takes him across trackless mountains, wastelands, and seas Through cunning and dumb luck, the relentless Cugel survives one catastrophe after another, fighting off bandits, ghosts, and ghouls stealing, lying, and cheating without insight or remorse leaving only wreckage behind Betrayed and betraying, he joins a cult group on a pilgrimage, crosses the Silver Desert as his comrades die one by one and, escaping the Rat People, obtains a spell that returns him home There, thanks to incompetence and arrogance he misspeaks the words of a purloined spell and transports himself back to the same dismal place he began his journey.


Recent Comments "The Eyes of the Overworld"

Underneath the fading sun, Cugel--a hero--emerges. Well, sort of a hero, but more of a trickster. Less Hector, more Ulysses; less Samson, more Jacob; less Tom, and a lot more Huck. Cugel, however, is less likable than any of the these. Selfish, exploitative, and filled with unlimited self-regard, he continually overestimates his own considerable intelligence and fails where a lesser man might have succeeded.Paradoxically, it is Cugel's flaws and failures that keep us on his side during his picar [...]

Tales of a trickster god.Like stories about Anansi, Coyote and Loki Jack Vance describes the misadventures of Cugel the Clever in picaresque fashion. Set in Vance’s far, far future world of the The Dying Earth, in his inimitable style blending elements of science fiction and fantasy, this 1966 publication is at times hilarious but always entertaining.While reading I smiled frequently and laughed out loud at least a couple of times and Vance made me think about the irascible nature of loveable [...]

I have already gushed enthusiastic about the opening volume in the Dying Earth epic. It seems I should have kept some of the hyperbole in reserve for later books, as the appeal of the setting and of the characters show no sign of slacking with this second book. It's also interesting to note that the saga of Cugel the Clever is not simply an iteration of a success formula. In many ways it is an improvement over the experiments in style from the first book.For one thing, the book is better structu [...]

Whereas Vance's previous volume in the The Dying Earth series was composed of several short stories, each featuring a different character, The Eyes of the Overworld focuses on one character, Cugel the Clever. Though the book is episodic in nature (each story was published separately over the course of a couple of years before being compiled in this volume), the character is consistent. And while the characters in The Dying Earth were capably presented in their individual stories, Cugel the Cleve [...]

ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.I’ve already said, numerous times, how much I love Jack Vance, so I’ll skip all that this time. You can read other reviews on this page if you missed that.The Eyes of the Overworld is the second part of Tales of the Dying Earth and the main character is one of my favorite Vance characters: the self-titled Cugel the Clever. Cugel is not the kind of guy you want to have dealings with — he’s clever, sneaky, completely selfish and remorseless. He is al [...]

The Eyes of the Overworld is the second novel in Jack Vance's Tales of the Dying Earth. I think I liked this installment even better than the first (which I loved). The story is about the adventures and misadventures of a Cugel the "clever," who is a pretty thorough rogue. I suppose he is clever at times, but he can also be stupid. Fortunately for Cugel, he does have some luck (good and bad -- though the bad is of the non-killing sort). I know this is Fantasy, but if you like the historical fict [...]

In this treasure island of a book Jack Vance had hidden two treasure troves: his wild imagination and his flowery language. And it is pure delight to find them both.“Cugel was a man of many capabilities, with a disposition at once flexible and pertinacious. He was long of leg, deft of hand, light of finger, soft of tongue. His hair was the blackest of black fur, growing low down his forehead, coving sharply back above his eyebrows. His darting eye, long inquisitive nose and droll mouth gave hi [...]

5.0 stars. Jack Vance deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke and Robery Heinlein. He is a master story teller and, unlike the aforementioned authors, Vance's books do not seem dated and can be read today with the same sense of wonder as when they were first written. The Dying Earth books are special, timeless classics that should be read and enjoyed by all fans of Science fiction. Superb world-building, amazing characters, like Cugel the Clever, and top not [...]

The Eyes of the Overworld is a great book, but I'm going to take a contrarian stance and say that I actually preferred The Dying Earth. Yes, I can admit that I wasn't totally smitten by the amoral, not-so-clever misadventures of Cugel the Clever after he crosses Iucounu the Laughing Magician. Yes, this book contained all the same sly, tongue-in-cheek humor, the strong imagery of a decaying and run-down world, and the wonderfully-stilted high language used by all the humans and other creatures of [...]

I am officially in love with Jack Vance's writing and now I want to add Cugel the Clever among my list of favorite characters. Book 2 of the Dying Earth series follows Cugel as he lies, cheats and steals his way across the Dying Earth in order to find a rare artifact for conniving wizard. Vance's prose is so much fun to read and he has a real talent for writing. I can't believe it took me so long to find him.

An absolute masterpiece of literature. Every word is sublimely exquisite, and reading this book is a sheer pleasure for those who appreciate language. Deft turns of phrase, arcane vocabulary, and humorous (yet adultly gruesome) situations abound in this classic. A simply magnificent and wondrous book - definitely one that should not be missed.Do NOT delay - get this book and immerse yourself into the most sumptuous writings you'll encounter. But don't read this book when your mind is cluttered - [...]

Vance enjoys forcing a dollar word into a nickel slot. While one can usually puzzle it out, putting your vocabulary processor into overdrive produces a Lorax-like swept-away-by-the-pants effect. Combine this with radical jumps across space and time, and you have the recipe for something better read than listened to. The audiobook's sound is poor, while the reader is below average. This makes a plethora of creatures sound similar. The reader's Cugel Voice is harder for him to manage than his crit [...]

Vance's preferred title, Cugel the Clever, best fits this wandering yarn about a selfish vagabond whose arrogance never falters, no matter how often he is outwitted. A classic anti-hero: You'll laugh when he abandons his damsels to distress; you'll cheer when he finally gets laid.

ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.The Eyes of the Overworld is the second part of Tales of the Dying Earth and the main character is one of my favorite Vance characters: the self-titled Cugel the Clever. Cugel is not the kind of guy you want to have dealings with — he’s clever, sneaky, completely selfish and remorseless. He is always trying to figure out how he can take advantage of other people in order to make his own circumstances better.In The Eyes of the Overworld, Cugel decides t [...]

Cugel the Clever, what a giant A-hole. He is likely to be one of the most despicable characters I have ever read about, selfish, often cowardly, and incapable of remorse or empathy, nothing seems to be below him, burglary, perjury, murder, you name it. His one decent act in the entire book was in reality motivated by spite, if it was; maybe he simply saw profit in it. I wonder what his alignment would be in a D&D game… I guess it would be chaotic neutral, at least from his own point of vie [...]

And so, continuing on with the "Dying Earth" series, this time following in the footsteps of Cugel (the "clever"), a conniving and amoral rogue as he attempts to fulfil a quest he is unwillingly enrolled on by a wizard.Cugel is an interesting character, an anti-hero and unusual protagonist for a fantasy novel. He is not especially well endowed with any particular skills or abilities (he's not even particularly clever). He is opportunistic and cowardly, quite willing to sacrifice his friends and [...]

If your experience with Fantasy is that it is tediously long, badly written, and always involves some morally-beige quest of good conquering evil, then I urge you to read Jack Vance, and in particular the Dying Earth series (collected in "Tales of the Dying Earth"). His immaculate prose and vast command of the English language creates wonderful conversations between characters and a fascinating glimpse into an old version of Earth, basking in the last rays of the sun. Here we have a few last inh [...]

"This is well enough," he said. "We are safe now, and there is much that lies between us."The girl shrank to her end of the boat. Cugel stepped astern and joined her. "Here I am, your spouse! Are you not overjoyed that finally we are alone? My chamber at the inn was far more comfortable, but this boat will suffice.""No," she whimpered. "Do not touch me! The ceremony was meaningless, a trick to persuade you to serve as Watchmen.""For three-score years perhaps, until I rang the gong from utter des [...]

* SummaryCugel "The Clever" a rogue somewhat in the spirit of Frasier's Flashman, runs afoul of Iuconnu "The Laughing Magician." Iuconnu sends Cugel on an errand to a faraway land, magically conveying him there, but leaving Cugel to return, the hard way, compelled by Iuconnu's parasitic servant, Frix. Cugel's adventures on the way back, lead him from through danger and treachery and every manner of wonder and terror of Vance's imagination. It's pretty much a showcase for what Vance does best: im [...]

This was my reading choice to commemorate the upcoming end of the world on Friday, December 21, 2012, the so-called end of the Mayan calendar according to conspiracy theorists and gullible fools. What better choice than one of jack Vance's The Dying Earth series of stories, in this case the second volume of the series, The Eyes of the Overworld. The series is set in a time when our sun is a red giant and could blink out at any time: Our civilization and most of the civilizations that followed it [...]

Jack Vance was a great writer in a genre that did not have a lot of respect or wealth during the majority of his life. This is one of the few books of his that I got "new" (vs. from a Used Bookstore) and I was given it to write a review in a student newspaper years and years ago.It is imaginative, fast-paced and humorous (of the sarcastic variety) and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I think I was aware of (and may have read) the second book of Cugel's adventures, but I did not know that another author [...]

Unlike "The Dying Earth", which was an interesting but somewhat awkward collection of interlinked stories set in a fantastical far-future earth, "The Eyes of the Overworld", which follows the adventures of 'Cugel the Clever' through magical landscapes and eras, was a much more coherent and enjoyable story. Either that, or maybe it just took me some time to get used to Vance's outlandish prose and baroque vocabulary, which I found myself enjoying much more in this book.

Read in Vance Integral Edition.

The Eyes of the Overworld is the second Vance novel in the book compilation titled Tales of the Dying Earth. Although it reads like a novel, it is actually a collection of five short works previously published in magazines plus one original work written for the novel. The original work is Cil. Another work, The Manse of Iucounu, was broken into two chapters in The Eyes of the Overworld and became The Cave in the Forest and The Manse of Iucounu. When it was originally published in The Magazine of [...]

كتاب "أعين العالم العلوي" هو الجزء الثاني من سلسلة "الأرض المحتضرة" وهي سلسلة تمزج بين الخيال العلمي اولفانتاظيا، حيث تقع أحداثها في المستقبل البعيد بعد ملايين السنين والأرض موشكة على الفناء بعدما بردت الشمس وأصبحت كرة حمراء ضعيفة الضوء موشكة على الانطفاء، والبشر قلة تكافح [...]

This book taught me the meaning of the word "picaresque"jective pi·ca·resque \ˌpi-kə-ˈresk, ˌpē-\: telling a story about the adventures of a usually playful and dishonest characterCugel the Clever (who sometimes seems like he should be called Cugel the "Clever") allows himself to be persuaded to visit the manse of Iocounu the Laughing Magician while Iocounu is otherwise occupied. Needless to say, it doesn't end well, and Cugel finds himself on a rocky, northern shore facing the prospect o [...]

Cugel is my favorite Jack Vance character. I am presently occupied in translating both this and the second book into Esperanto a hobby, I might adde I just enjoy them so much and wanted to share (with full permission, of course).Cugel is no one you'd care to know too very well. He is a rogue's rogue: charming and witty. But you'd have your hand on your purse the whole while he was around. His plans for larceny are often successfulright up to the point where comically they fall apartor are undone [...]

I've read this in the omnibus Tales Of The Dying Earth. I feel like kicking Cugel's ass, for everywhere he comes, he leaves a path of destruction, death, has no respect for customs, profites from others' actions, and yet, one can't help feel to choose his side too when he's cornered. On the other hand, in the end you sort of get the message: what goes around, comes around. Or, don't seek personal revenge, because that is not going to end the circle or spiral. On the contrary, it might get worse [...]

The book is written in an extravagantly fluid style which employs a great breath of language and vocabulary, and this ornate style doesn’t end with the narration but extends into each and every character that has a voice. From the grand wizards who rule the future earth under the dwindling sun to half humanoid-half crustacean creatures with childish voices, they all speak with the same elaborate tongue. This over the top style of the book is what gives us the fantastic world Vance has created. [...]

The second book of the Dying Earth series, published 16 years after the first. And oh, how much the quality of Vance's prose improved in these years.The backdrop is the same as the first Dying Earth book, but here we have a single story following the long journey of a single character, instead of a collection of unconnected short stories. The tone is very similar to what probably was the best story in the first Dying Earth book, "Liane the Wayfarer"; the main character is a greedy, mischievous a [...]


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