Kingdoms of the Wall

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Overview

The village of Jespodar nestles in the foothills of a world-dominating mountain known to all as "The Wall." Poilar Crookleg has grown up in Jespodar training hard and hoping that he will be chosen for the annual Pilgrimage, a group journey to the top of the mountain from which no pilgrim has ever returned both alive and sane. The pilgrims seek to replicate the legendary journey of a distant ancestor who scaled the mountain and, so the story goes, met with the gods. The Pilgrimage is a a life journey, an ...
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Kingdoms of the Wall

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Overview

The village of Jespodar nestles in the foothills of a world-dominating mountain known to all as "The Wall." Poilar Crookleg has grown up in Jespodar training hard and hoping that he will be chosen for the annual Pilgrimage, a group journey to the top of the mountain from which no pilgrim has ever returned both alive and sane. The pilgrims seek to replicate the legendary journey of a distant ancestor who scaled the mountain and, so the story goes, met with the gods. The Pilgrimage is a a life journey, an overwhelming challenge and a sacred honor and Poilar feels blessed when he is finally chosen to lead it.

But not all is as it first seems. Along the journey lie hazards of all kinds, both vilently dangerous and seductively beguiling and to triumph in the climb is to confront a revelation so surprising and so disturbing that none, not even the smartest and best prepared, are likely to survive. What belief and what devotion leads so many to hope for such a challenging task and what will be the ultimate result of such dedication? Only The Wall itself can reveal the destiny for those who undertake the Pilgrimage.

Back in print with a new introduction by the author.
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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Where Silverberg goes today, the rest of science fiction will follow tomorrow. -Isaac Asimov "Silverberg seems capable of amazements beyond those of mere mortals." -Washington Post Book World
Library Journal
Poilar Crookleg's dream becomes reality when he is designated leader of a group of 40 young men and women chosen by the village of Jespodar to participate in the yearly pilgrimage to the top of the mammouth mountain known as ``The Wall,'' a journey from which no sane person has heretofore returned. Veteran sf author Silverberg is a consummate raconteur with a flair for metaphor. Like the ocean in his Face of the Waters LJ 9/15/91, the mountain in his latest work represents both a physical and a spiritual obstacle for the human spirit. Fans of epic adventure will not be disappointed.
Roland Green
Silverberg's latest is superficially the most basic sort of quest tale. Poilar Crookleg is called on to lead 40 pilgrims from his village in an attempt to scale the Wall that looms just beyond the village and in search of the wisdom of the gods, although he knows he will likely return a madman, if he returns at all. The novel's real protagonist is the Wall itself, with the humans that hurl themselves against it almost minor characters in comparison. Although not absolutely at Silverberg's highest technical level, this book is vivid and compelling most of the way through. It also indicates that Silverberg's skill and ingenuity are not diminishing, for all that he is at or past his fortieth year as a published writer.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553565447
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/1/1994
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 384

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2001

    More than Just Memorable Work

    This is a tale of tragedy and enlightenment, for the trials of the Pilgrims are as much personal as physical. Sometimes appalling, other times (though rare) amusing, there is a pang of sadness and satisfaction for the characters as they come to realize their fate. I've re-read this work many, many times and I always find some small nuance that I had missed before -my own little re-illumination, perhaps. For those who love fantasy and scifi, and those who enjoy twists in the tale, this is a must read.

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