War Amongst the Angels (Second Ether Series #3)

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The lyrical genius of Michael Moorcock defies categorization; his creations soar to grand and golden places hitherto unimagined and unimaginable. In this, his most heartfelt and astonishing work to date, he carries the reader across mystical thresholds viewed from afar in the brilliant Blood and Fabulous Harbors, and reveals the mighty destinies, exemplary loves, and the true and secret histories of his most beloved and intriguing characters. It is a tale of the incomparable Rose von Bek, who discovers the myriad...
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Overview

The lyrical genius of Michael Moorcock defies categorization; his creations soar to grand and golden places hitherto unimagined and unimaginable. In this, his most heartfelt and astonishing work to date, he carries the reader across mystical thresholds viewed from afar in the brilliant Blood and Fabulous Harbors, and reveals the mighty destinies, exemplary loves, and the true and secret histories of his most beloved and intriguing characters. It is a tale of the incomparable Rose von Bek, who discovers the myriad possibilities that life has to offer in the special, infinitely wondrous places known as the Second Ether--where time has no bounds and existence is a river of endless reinvention. Here, also, is the love of her life--the volatile and enigmatic Sam Oakenburst--and the story of the ill-fated passion of the exotic Colinda Dovero and the swashbuckling gambler Jack Karaquazian. These four together--along with their exceptional companions, including Rose's mad uncle, Michael, late of Texas--will become allies in what some call the great War in Heaven, fighting shoulder-to-shoulder against the agents of evil and stagnation, in a battle whose outcome will determine the very nature of reality itself.
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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Moorcock's latest metamorphic, calculated, gnomic, self- referential venture into the "multiverse" completes the trilogy of Blood (1995) and Fabulous Harbors (1997). The chief character and narrator here is Rose von Bek, née Moorcock (it's an "autobiographical story," the author explains helpfully), who, born during the London Blitz, becomes a highwayman to defy the oppressive Universal Transport Company before discovering the doorway to the multiverse—and thence the impending war between the Singularity and the Chaos Engineers that threatens not only the First and Second Ethers but creation itself.

Endlessly reinventive, purposefully bewildering, unquantifiable, and elusive—typically Moorcock, in fact. Your move.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780380975976
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 12/1/1997
  • Series: Second Ether Series , #3
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.87 (w) x 8.59 (h) x 1.12 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Those who may be pleased to honor these pages with a perusal, will not be detained with a long introductory history of my birth, parentage, and education. The very title implied that, at this period of my memoirs, I was ignorant of the two first; and it will be necessary for the due developement of my narrative, that I allow them to remain in the same state of bliss: for in the perusal of a tale, as well as in the pilgrimage of life, ignorance of the future may truly be considered as the greatest source of happiness.
—CAPTAIN MARRYAT, Japhet in Search of a Father

I Am Born

I was born in the reign of King George VI, backstage at South London's old Brixton Empire during a lull in the Battle of Britain. My mother, Lady Eleanor Moorcock, blossoming from a retirement to which she would never return, was entertaining the troops. The pains became urgent halfway through her finale, Home With The Milk In The Morning. I popped out so quickly, she told me, that she was able to take the cast curtain call and accept a glass of champagne before we were given a lift home in a field-marshall's staff car to Hammersmith and our flat in Begg Mansions, Sporting Club Square.

Sporting Club Square, which lay directly between two great music-halls, the Fulham Palace and the Hammersmith Royal, had an anti-aircraft position next to the tennis courts. My mother said the ack-ack and the searchlights were blazing away for the rest of the night and it took her two large ASVs before she could get a wink but as soon as I had been given to the wet nurse I went off like a top. She lived apart from my father, who was attached to some mysterious ministry and slept at his club when intown. He was leaving Casablanca, I believe, on that particular night.

For those times the circumstances of my birth were not remarkable. Many considered them fortunate, with four medical officers and a midwife in the audience. Two of the MOs and the midwife were killed in rocket attacks in 1945, close to the war's end, but I stayed in touch with both the others until their deaths. They regarded me with all the specific affection of uncles and by happy chance both became magistrates in later life, able to bend their principles a little when my cases came up, for I was never a lucky thief.

My parents had been separated since 1937, but preserved a peculiar loyalty and love for each other. Their rare meetings were always passionate.

My father hated to leave the family place in Yorkshire, whereas my mother pined if she was ever longer than a month away from the capital. Even through the Blitz she stuck it out. Indeed, she became a local heroine when she helped survivors climb to safety from the burning Convent of the Poor Clares behind the Square.

While I lay in the relative security of the basement shelter, the incendiary fire-storm screaming and raving outside, my mother made the nuns tea on a camp stove in her own kitchen. Peeling back the blackout curtain, they watched the blinding incandescent torch of The Fulham Palace as she blazed into oblivion in what seemed moments. From the Square-facing windows they saw the other mansion blocks silhouetted by the glare from Hammersmith, where The royal had also sustained a direct hit. The sky would not stop shouting. She sang them their favorite old-time songs. Three sisters asked for her autograph. They were already admirers. As Nellie Taylor she had been very popular in the last years of the London music halls and one of the stars of The Kilburn Hippodrome before my father took her into marriage. After the war she became a successful character actress.

My father is Sir Arthur Moorcock firstly of Tower House, Moorcock near Dent in Wensleydale, Yorkshire and later of Far ring Grange, near Worthing, West Sussex. I am perhaps the only member of the direct line not to prefer Tower House and its endlessly changing landscapes to city life. I share the view that I inherited more of my mother's temperament than my father's. This was a source of some disappointment to the family but never, it seemed, to my father who was of a phlegmatic character, with a profound sense of human individuality and liberty. He delighted as much in my mother's qualities as he delighted in the white hares running free over the fells in winter. "Your mother is a wild flower," he would say to me, "and needs to blossom where she can."

Copyright ) 1996 by Michael and Linda Moorcock

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