Thursday, January 17, 2008
Ursula Le Guin is one of those writers whose gifts for storytelling, characterization, and just plain challenging yet concise writing often are overlooked by those wanting to read "the best" in speculative fiction. Last month, I decided that I wanted to read more of her fiction for 2008, starting with the Hainish Cycle books that I own.
In the coming days and weeks, expect reviews of the three earliest Hainish Cycle books, Rocannon's World, Planet of Exile, City of Illusion (collected together by Tor Books in 1994 in an omnibus edition entitled Worlds of Exile and Illusion), to be followed by reviews of her two most famous Hainish Cycle novels, The Left Hand of Darkness and The Dispossessed, and finally a much later Hainish Cycle novel, The Telling. In addition, I plan on reviewing a non-Hainish Cycle novel, The Lathe of Heaven, and if I can find the books in my local library, her Earthsea fantasy books. Hopefully later this year, I'll have the money to spare for buying her latest YAish series, not to mention the upcoming April novel based off of Vergil's epic poem, Lavinia.
So expect some citations, discussion of anthropology, languages, Taoism, and anarchism in these reviews. Hopefully there are many more fans of her work out there than the relatively few voices I've heard over at this remote corner of the SF blogosphere. After all, Le Guin truly is one of the greats in the field for a variety of reasons and I hope that my upcoming posts will reflect this greatness to some degree.