Endless Things: A Part of Ægypt [NOOK Book]

Overview


Praise for the Ægypt sequence:

"With Little, Big, Crowley established himself as America’s greatest living writer of fantasy. Ægypt confirms that he is one of our finest living writers, period."
—Michael Dirda

"A dizzying experience, achieved with unerring security of technique."
The New York Times Book Review

"A master of language, plot, and characterization."
—Harold ...

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Endless Things: A Part of Ægypt

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Overview


Praise for the Ægypt sequence:

"With Little, Big, Crowley established himself as America’s greatest living writer of fantasy. Ægypt confirms that he is one of our finest living writers, period."
—Michael Dirda

"A dizzying experience, achieved with unerring security of technique."
The New York Times Book Review

"A master of language, plot, and characterization."
—Harold Bloom

"The further in you go, the bigger it gets."
—James Hynes

"The writing here is intricate and thoughtful, allusive and ironic. . . . Ægypt bears many resemblances, incidental and substantive, to Thomas Pynchon’s wonderful 1966 novel The Crying of Lot 49."
USA Today

"An original moralist of the same giddy heights occupied by Thomas Mann and Robertson Davies."
San Francisco Chronicle

This is the fourth novel—and much-anticipated conclusion—of John Crowley’s astonishing and lauded Ægypt sequence: a dense, lyrical meditation on history, alchemy, and memory. Spanning three centuries, and weaving together the stories of Renaissance magician John Dee, philosopher Giordano Bruno, and present-day itinerant historian and writer Pierce Moffitt, the Ægypt sequence is as richly significant as Lawrence Durrell’s Alexandria Quartet or Anthony Powell’s Dance to the Music of Time. Crowley, a master prose stylist, explores transformations physical, magical, alchemical, and personal in this epic, distinctly American novel where the past, present, and future reflect each other.

"It is a work of great erudition and deep humanity that is as beautifully composed as any novel in my experience."
Washington Post Book World

"An unpredictable, free-flowing, sui generis novel."
Los Angeles Times

"With Endless Things and the completion of the Ægypt cycle, Crowley has constructed one of the finest, most welcoming tales contemporary fiction has to offer us."
Book Forum

"Crowley’s peculiar kind of fantasy: a conscious substitute for the magic in which you don’t quite believe any more."
London Review of Books 

"A beautiful palimpsest as complex, mysterious and unreliable as human memory."
Seattle Times

"This year, while millions of Harry Potter fans celebrated and mourned the end of their favorite series, a much smaller but no less devoted group of readers marked another literary milestone: the publication of the last book in John Crowley’s Ægypt Cycle."
—Matt Ruff

"Crowley’s eloquent and captivating conclusion to his Ægypt tetralogy finds scholar Pierce Moffet still searching for the mythical Ægypt, an alternate reality of magic and marvels that have been encoded in our own world’s myths, legends and superstitions. Pierce first intuited the realm’s existence from the work of cult novelist Fellowes Kraft. Using Kraft’s unfinished final novel as his Baedeker, Pierce travels to Europe, where he spies tantalizing traces of Ægypt’s mysteries in the Gnostic teachings of the Rosicrucians, the mysticism of John Dee, the progressive thoughts of heretical priest Giordano Bruno and the “chemical wedding” of two 17th-century monarchs in Prague. Like Pierce’s travels, the final destination for this modern fantasy epic is almost incidental to its telling. With astonishing dexterity, Crowley (Lord Byron’s Novel) parallels multiple story lines spread across centuries and unobtrusively deploys recurring symbols and motifs to convey a sense of organic wholeness. Even as Pierce’s quest ends on a fulfilling personal note, this marvelous tale comes full circle to reinforce its timeless themes of transformation, re-creation and immortality."
Publishers Weekly

Locus Award finalist

John Crowley was born in the appropriately liminal town of Presque Isle, Maine. His most recent novel is Four Freedoms. He teaches creative writing at Yale University. In 1992 he received the Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He finds it more gratifying that almost all of his work is still in print.

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Editorial Reviews

Bill Sheehan
John Crowley's Endless Things is the fourth and last installment in a vast, intricate series of novels collectively entitled "Aegypt." The series (which is really one long novel) began in 1987 with the publication of Aegypt (soon to be reissued as The Solitudes) and was followed by Love & Sleep (1994) and Daemonomania (2000). It was clear from the start that Crowley was on to something special, and the appearance of this final volume confirms that impression. In its entirety, "Aegypt" stands as one of the most distinctive accomplishments of recent decades. It is a work of great erudition and deep humanity that is as beautifully composed as any novel in my experience.
— The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly

Crowley's eloquent and captivating conclusion to his Ægypt tetralogy finds scholar Pierce Moffet still searching for the mythical Ægypt, an alternate reality of magic and marvels that have been encoded in our own world's myths, legends and superstitions. Pierce first intuited the realm's existence from the work of cult novelist Fellowes Kraft. Using Kraft's unfinished final novel as his Baedeker, Pierce travels to Europe, where he spies tantalizing traces of Ægypt's mysteries in the Gnostic teachings of the Rosicrucians, the mysticism of John Dee, the progressive thoughts of heretical priest Giordano Bruno and the "chemical wedding" of two 17th-century monarchs in Prague. Like Pierce's travels, the final destination for this modern fantasy epic is almost incidental to its telling. With astonishing dexterity, Crowley (Lord Byron's Novel) parallels multiple story lines spread across centuries and unobtrusively deploys recurring symbols and motifs to convey a sense of organic wholeness. Even as Pierce's quest ends on a fulfilling personal note, this marvelous tale comes full circle to reinforce its timeless themes of transformation, re-creation and immortality. (May)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Kirkus Reviews
The search for knowledge that obsesses historian Pierce Moffett reaches an inevitably muted conclusion in this dense, final volume of Crowley's fascinating, knotty AEgypt Quartet. Readers of its predecessors (Daemonomania, 2000, etc.) will already know what emerges gradually here: that Pierce's quest to comprehend an "alternate history" of everything expresses an idea he gleaned from eccentric novelist Fellowes Kraft's learned historical romances-that the plenitude, indeed infinitude of the universe, composed as it is of "endless things," promises "[m]ore than one history of the world, one for each of us." Transformation and cyclical process are of the essence, as Pierce travels to Europe, researching evidence of gnosis (i.e., ultimate meaning) in the life and martyrdom of Renaissance philosopher Giordano Bruno, the eclectic genius of Elizabethan scientist-magus John Dee, the mazelike lore of Rosicrucianism and the significance of the "chemical wedding" that united a 17th-century Bohemian prince with the daughter of England's King James I. This portion of the novel is kick-started by a lovely account of Pierce's London meeting with legendary Renaissance scholar Frances Yates and a fragmented history of Fellowes Kraft's embattled and enlightened childhood, and dominated by a lengthy account of Bruno's several reincarnations after he was burned at the stake. Then, in what amounts to a book-length denouement, numerous flashbacks and segues to Pierce's youth, marriage and adoptive fatherhood link the resolution of his quest to the repetition of ancient stories, trysts and moral lessons-as do the experiences of his scattered family, friends, lovers, mentors and soul mates. The book ends with apilgrimage to a mountaintop that accomplishes a long-desired reconciliation. Forbiddingly intricate, frequently static and, doubtless, only semi-intelligible to readers who do not recall in considerable detail the content of its three predecessors.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781618730183
  • Publisher: Small Beer Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2007
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 341
  • Sales rank: 415,065
  • File size: 461 KB

Meet the Author


John Crowley was born in the apporopriately liminal town of Presque Isle, Maine, in 1942, his father then an officer in the US Army Air Corps. He grew up in Vermont, northeastern Kentucky and (for the longest stretch) Indiana, where he went to high school and college. He moved to New York City after college to make movies.
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