King of Dreams (Lord Prestimon Trilogy #3)

King of Dreams (Lord Prestimon Trilogy #3)

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by Robert Silverberg
     
 

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After years of unrest, Coronal Lord Prestimion has finally restored peace to Majipoor. But as he prepares for his ascension to the throne of Pontifex, the kingdom comes under attack once more.

The nefarious Mandralisca has unleashed a devastating plague on Majipoor's citizens—a power from the past that Prestimion believed was destroyed—driving them to

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Overview

After years of unrest, Coronal Lord Prestimion has finally restored peace to Majipoor. But as he prepares for his ascension to the throne of Pontifex, the kingdom comes under attack once more.

The nefarious Mandralisca has unleashed a devastating plague on Majipoor's citizens—a power from the past that Prestimion believed was destroyed—driving them to madness and monstrosity. And now, Prestimion and the able Prince Dekkeret must venture again onto the battlefield of nightmare as they wage war for the very soul of Majipoor.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The third book of bestseller Silverberg's widely praised Prestimion Trilogy, also the concluding volume of his Majipoor cycle, abounds in rich description of a vast planet peopled by 15 billion beings of several species and ruled by two human kings. Unfortunately, Silverberg seems so enraptured with Majipoor and the history he's created for it that he languishes lovingly in flashbacks and recapitulations that prevent his slim plot, centered on the transfer of power from Coronal Lord Prestimion to Prince Dekkeret, from getting underway until well into the present novel. Delightful as his many fans may find his excursions into extraterrestrial geography, biology and alien religious cults, their sheer quantity detracts here from the potentially intriguing interplay of character in the context of generational torch-passing, as the fortyish Dekkeret assumes his Coronalhood and the once wily and vigorous Prestimion settles into incipient geezerhood. Minor characters, many familiar from earlier volumes, play their expected supporting roles. The most effectively drawn is the fiery swordsman and High Spokesman, Septach Melayn, but even his self-sacrifice, which saves the world for Dekkeret, is lost amid the pomp and pageantry, the might and majesty of Majipoor, the real protagonist of this lengthy cycle of novels, in which inventive language and vivid alien landscapes reign supreme. (June 12) Forecast: With blurbs from Robert Jordan and Ursula le Guin, Silverberg should once again climb genre bestseller lists with this concluding volume. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
VOYA
Just when Prestimion's reign as Coronal seems peaceful and productive, the unexpected death of Confalume throws Prestimion into the senior position of Pontifex, and Dekkeret replaces Prestimion as Coronal. The transitional monarchy immediately is faced with new tribulations. Prestimion's brother mysteriously dies after suffering hideous dreams;his daughter is haunted by nightmares, and his mother, the Lady of the Isle of Sleep, is left aged and ill by night terrors even she cannot control. Evidence indicates that Madralisca, Dantirya Sambail's poison taster, plans to crown an alternative Ponifex in Zimroel and create his own empire on the other side of the world by manipulating minds with his new weapon. Prestimion vows to declare war on Madralisca and his followers, but Dekkeret orchestrates their enemy's overthrow himself. He then designates his friend Dinitak the King of Dreams, a new power who forever will monitor the minds of Majipoor's residents and seek out those who might disturb the kingdom's peace. This fast-paced conclusion to the Prestimion Trilogy of the Majipoor Cycle is constructed skillfully and is difficult to put down. Prestimion and Dekkeret are as familiar as old friends, but additional characters and several romantic matches keep the plot fresh and intriguing. This novel is Silverberg at his best. Majipoor's rich history constantly expands and changes under his skillful hands. This final volume joins Sorcerers of Majipoor (HarperPrism, 1997/VOYA April 1998) and Lord Prestimion (HarperCollins, 1999/VOYA December 1999). VOYA CODES:5Q 4P S A/YA (Hard to imagine it being any better written;Broad general YA appeal;Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12;Adult and YoungAdult). 2001, EOS/HarperCollins, 451p, $25. Ages 15 to Adult. Reviewer:Nancy K. Wallace—VOYA, December 2001 (Vol. 24, No. 5)
Library Journal - Library Journal
With the death of Confalume, the Coronal Prestimion prepares to assume the position of Pontifex and retire from the world, turning his duties over to his designated heir, Lord Dekkeret. However, the emergence of an ancient evil to threaten the lands of Majipoor demands desperate measures as Prestimion and Dekkeret risk their destinies for the safety of their realm. Sf/fantasy veteran Silverberg's third volume in his popular "Majipoor Cycle" (after Sorcerers of Majipoor and Lord Prestimion) brings to a satisfying conclusion the story of an honorable man's rise to power. The author's graceful style and narrative talent once more creates a world of genuine wonder and adventure. For most fantasy collections. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061051715
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/01/2001
Series:
Majipoor Chronicles Series, #7
Edition description:
1st Edition
Pages:
464
Product dimensions:
6.48(w) x 9.50(h) x 1.44(d)

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Chapter One

"That has to be what we're looking for," said the Skandar, Sudvik Gorn, standing at the edge of the cliff and pointing down the steep hillside with harsh jabbing motions of his lower left arm. They had reached the crest of the ridge. The underlying rock had crumbled badly here, so that the trail they had been following terminated in a rough patch covered with sharp greenish gravel, and just beyond lay a sudden drop into a thickly vegetated valley. "Vorthinar Keep, right there below us! What else could that building be, if not the rebel's keep? And easy enough for us to set it ablaze, this time of year."

"Let me see," young Thastain said. "My eyes are better than yours." Eagerly he reached for the spyglass that Sudvik Gorn held in his other lower arm.

It was a mistake. Sudvik Gorn enjoyed baiting the boy, and Thastain had given him yet another chance. The huge Skandar, better than two feet taller than he was, yanked the glass away, shifting it to an upper arm and waving it with ponderous playfulness high above Thastain's head. He grinned a malicious snaggletoothed grin. "Jump for it, why don't you?"

Thastain felt his face growing hot with rage. "Damn you! Just let me have the thing, you moronic four-armed bastard!"

"What was that? Bastard, am I? Bastard? Say it again?" The Skandar's shaggy face turned dark. He brandished the spyglass now as though the tube were a weapon, swinging it threateningly from side to side. "Yes. Say it again, and then I'll knock you from here to Ni-moya."

Thastain glared at him. "Bastard! Bastard!Go ahead and knock me, if you can." He was sixteen, a slender, fair-skinned boy who was swift enough afoot to outrace a bilantoon. This was his first important mission in the service of the Five Lords of Zimroel, and the Skandar had selected him, somehow, as his special enemy. Sudvik Gorn's constant maddening ridicule was driving him to fury. For the past three days, almost from the beginning of their journey from the domain of the Five Lords, many miles to the southeast, up here into the rebel-held territory, Thastain had held it in, but now he could contain it no longer. "You have to catch me first, though, and I can run circles around you, and you know it. Eh, Sudvik Gorn, you great heap of flea-bitten fur!"

The Skandar growled and came rumbling forward. But instead of fleeing, Thastain leaped agilely back just a few yards and, whirling quickly, scooped up a fat handful of jagged pebbles. He drew back his arm as though he meant to hurl them in Sudvik Gorn's face. Thastain gripped the stones so tightly that their sharp edges bit into the palm of his hand. You could blind a man with stones like that, he thought.

Sudvik Gorn evidently thought so too. He halted in mid-stride, looking baffled and angry, and the two stood facing each other. It was a stalemate.

"Come on," Thastain said, beckoning to the Skandar and offering him a mocking look. "One more step. Just one more." He swung his arm in experimental underhand circles, gathering momentum for the throw.

The Skandar's red-tinged eyes flamed with ire. From his vast chest came a low throbbing sound like that of a volcano readying itself for eruption. His four mighty arms quivered with barely contained menace. But he did not advance.

By this time the other members of the scouting party had noticed what was happening. Out of the corner of his eye Thastain saw them coming together to his right and left, forming a loose circle along the ridge, watching, chuckling. None of them liked the Skandar, but Thastain doubted that many of the men cared for him very much either. He was too young, too raw, too green, too pretty, In all probability they thought that he needed to be knocked around a little — roughed up by life as they had been before him.

"Well, boy?" It was the hard-edged voice of Gambrund, the roundcheeked Piliplok man with the bright purple scar that cut a vivid track across the whole left side of his face. Some said that Count Mandralisca had done that to him for spoiling his aim during a gihorna hunt, others that it had been the Lord Gavinius in a drunken moment, as though the Lord Gavinius ever had any other kind. "Don't just stand there! Throw them! Throw them in his hairy face!"

"Right, throw them," someone else called. "Show the big ape a thing or two! Put his filthy eyes out!"

This was very stupid, Thastain thought. If he threw the stones he had better be sure to blind Sudvik Gorn with them on the first cast, or else the Skandar very likely would kill him. But if he blinded Sudvik Gorn the Count would punish him severely for it — quite possibly would have him blinded himself. And if he simply tossed the stones away he'd have to run for it, and run very well, for if Sudvik Gorn caught him he would hammer him with those great fists of his until he was smashed to pulp; but if he fled then everyone would call him a coward for fleeing. It was impossible any way whichever. How had he contrived to get himself into this? And how was he going to get himself out?

He wished most profoundly that someone would rescue him. Which was what happened a moment later.

"All right, stop it, you two," said a new voice from a few feet behind Thastain. Criscantoi Vaz, it was. He was a wiry, broad-shouldered graybearded man, a Ni-moyan: the oldest of the group, a year or two past forty. He was one of the few here who had taken a liking of sorts to Thastain...

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