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Summer Tree
     

Summer Tree

4.6 25
by Guy Gavriel Kay
 

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First in a new trilogy from the bestselling author of Tigana. This finely textured tapestry tells of five young persons and their journey into a mystic realm. "Kay's intricate Celtic background will please fantasy buffs".-- Publishers Weekly. Kay has been retained by J.R.R. Tolkien's estate to help complete The Silmarillion.

Overview

First in a new trilogy from the bestselling author of Tigana. This finely textured tapestry tells of five young persons and their journey into a mystic realm. "Kay's intricate Celtic background will please fantasy buffs".-- Publishers Weekly. Kay has been retained by J.R.R. Tolkien's estate to help complete The Silmarillion.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780007217243
Publisher:
Gardners Books
Publication date:
02/06/2006

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The Summer Tree (Fionavar Tapestry #1) 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
First off...to anyone considering this series, it's fantastic and rates in the top 5 (quite possibly #1) of books I've read in my lifetime. The characters are wonderful and compelling, as is the story. With regard to a few of the comments below saying that Kay took much of his ideas from the LOTR and from Donaldson's Covanant series though...What you are reading (the book in your hands) was a recent reprint published in 2001. The original series was published in 1984 (first book) and finished in 1986. Originally, the Covanant series was published in 1981, but recieved very little press until 1986 when it was reissued. So I'll give it the possiblity that Kay lifted some ideas from it. Given this though...the idea of people from our world travelling to another world was broached at least 30 years earlier by CS Lewis in the Chronicles of Narnia, which I think has more similarity to Kay and Donaldson's work than either of them have to each other. I enjoyed Donaldson's work, but I wouldn't say that it's achingly similar Kay's work...even if we discount that one is much more along a single person journey of discovery while the other is more of a fellowship sort of thing. As for the Lord of the Rings. It's not to be surprised to find similarities between Kay's work and Tolkien's. Most fantasy has fallout from Tolkein...he covered much of the territory in fantasy (Lord Foul is very similar to Sauron, just as the Dark One in the Wheel of Time is similar to Sauron...it's hard to escape the theme of a central great evil One). Also, Kay co-edited the Silmarillion in the mid-70's with Christopher Tolkien, so I'm sure some influence leaked in there. On the other hand, Kay draws *very* strongly and obviously from Norse, Celtic and Arthurian myth for many of his gods and characters. Tyr, Fenris, The Lady of Shalot, Odin, Loki all make veiled appearances in the Fionovar Tapestry. This is something Tolkien did too, however to a much lesser (or at least, less obvious) extent. My *personal* opinion though is that incorporation of myth into books often strengthens the story since we have a strong undercurrent of myth in our culture. The incorporation of myth only serves to strengthen our ties with the story because it has a familiarity and undercurrent we are already bound to (classic use of the Heroic Cycle is another big one...starting way back in Greek Tragedy and continuing forever and hugely visible everywhere...including Star Wars).
LyndaMR More than 1 year ago
Ohmygod I LOVED this book. My friend gave it to me to read about 20 years ago and I recently re-read the series. I'd never read any fantasy before this book, and was riveted from the beginning. It's an epic of the fight between good and evil, where four college students are brought to another world and end up having a dramatic effect and partaking in the battle. Each has their own part to play, and are forever changed by the experience. AMAZING!!
GGKCRUSADER More than 1 year ago
LOVE IT! I can't explain the intensity and dramatic feel of this book... the 1st of a perfect series!
Guest More than 1 year ago
As most of the other writers have said, this book was wonderful. All the characters, places, things give you such a wonderful feeling. I don't believe that it was a rip off Lord of The Rings. It had so much more, and times so much less. None of the characters in LOTR can even compare to these(although I loved that series also) I can never understand why Guy Gavriel Kay never became a more populare writer. His gift of making you cry when people die, and laugh when people do wonderful deeds is a rare gift. Anyone who reads this series will not be dissapointed!
nycavri More than 1 year ago
Three decades on, still one of the most powerful tales ever written. Kay takes the traditional fantasy setting and weaves a story of identity and inter-personal relationships that steals the reader's breath away. Everyone who reads this masterpiece seems to relate strongly to at least one of the modern-day characters drawn into Fionavar, the first of all worlds.
LWH78 More than 1 year ago
Classic excellent fantasy, writer deserves every penny he can earn, even after all this time. Books are not fruit and do not "spoil". They can lose  their engagement with current culture, unless they are written as well as this one. The classical elements of this fine story remain relevant, the slightly dated points demonstrate the connection to the time it was produced in both our culture and the writers development.I am happy to see it available to new audiences. 
bunnyrabbit1957 More than 1 year ago
full of intrigue and mysteries. highly entertaining. don't miss the other two of this trilogy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book, the whole trilogy is fantastic. Tons of fantasy novels claim to rival Tolkien, but Kay lives up to the boast. He mixes real life characters with fantasy and celtic myth to create a trilogy you just can't help but read all the way through!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Rereading this series for the first time after almost 25 years. I was afraid I might have become too hard for this book to move me the way it did when I first read it. I am happy to report that it is just as thrilling, just as moving, and possibly even more deeply resonant since I am reading it through the prism of a quarter century of life filled with joys, struggles, and heartaches. Can't wait to move on to The Wandering Fire.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was very highly recommended to me. However, I found that it was mildly enjoyable if you were in the right mood, and that was about it. The characters were far too perfect. I couldn't really relate to any of them. There was also too much history and not enough plot development. The main highlight was the style in which it was written. Some sections seemed liked the author was trying too hard, but others were really truly beautiful. In short, I think Kay should have been a poet, not a novelist.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Most of you probably don't know that the Fionovar Tapestry series is pretty old. I first read it about twenty years ago, around 1985 or so. I'm glad that it's been reprinted/updated/whatever, because it was one of the first fantasy series I'd ever read and it stuck in my head all this time. I'm eager to re-read it and see if it's as good as I remembered.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It was with great eagerness and anticipation that I picked up The Summer Tree. Kay as an author had been highly recommended to me and I had enjoyed Tigana very much. But when I began reading I was shocked. The ideas were good but I found the manner in which they were put forth was confusing at best. I got the feeling that Kay was trying too hard. Trying to hard to make the story fascinating but giving you as little information as possible, trying too hard to make the characters real but giving them too many issues. I felt so in the dark about the entire thing that it was difficult to enjoy. All the elements of Fionavar that could easily have been explained for the reader's benefit(there were five characters from earth that could have been the vehicles for those explainations), he spoke of only vaguely. The result is that I'm left will a million questions (which will of course keep me reading the trilogy) but little satisfaction.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Fionavar Tapestry is one of the best books I have ever read.Kay has a gift of writing his books so well you get a picture in your head of the whole story.kay's way of getting you attached to his characters is amazing.When I finished this series I was yearning for more.I don't understand why Kay isn't well known.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This trilogy is some of the best fantasy I've ever read, and I've read a lot! Large in scope, with wonderful characters that you will fall in love with. It's good to see this series back in print again. If you're a fan of Epic Fantasy, do yourself a favor and by these books!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Kay has to be one of the most real writers I have read. His characters have a depth that others authors can only hint at. Why he is not more well known and popular I shall never understand, more people should read his works.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book along, with the rest of the series, is the best fiction I have read in a long time,if you like Fantasy at all you will love this book, if you can afford it buy all three you won't regret it. If you want to talk about these type of books feel free to e-mail me.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm not quite done with this book, but already it ranks up with the works of Jordan and JRT.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have read many books lately, and upon deciding to go to the library I chose to rent this book. How would I know, that it would probably be one of the best I have read in a long time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've read many fantasy books but few can compare to the mastery of Guy Gavriel Kay. It is rare to find a book where the author speaks in a language so very right to the setting he creates. Beautifully written and very believable.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Somehow, the trilogy that this book started has become ranked with the highest series of epic fantasy. All of the characters, lands, people, magic, etc have been directly stolen from the Lord of the Rings or the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever; Tolkien is responsible for the people in Fioanvar, while the travellers from our world are all elements of Thomas Covenant. This book drags brutally through scenes that should've taken a page to write, then speeds up when things become interesting and the reader deserves more information. Despite the fact that the Dalrei are only a combination of Donaldson's Ramen and Tolkien's Rohirrim, the parts of the book featuring the mounted warriors are the sole fresh moments and the reason the book merits an entire 2 stars.