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“I'm not that big of a fan of Sci-Fi / Fantasy books - but I loved this one with a passion. It was my favorite out of the three Earthsea novels and I felt I took so much away from the story that I could put towards my life - as cheesy as that might sound.
Didn’t Like It
“I really felt like this book dragged. I read the entire series and the farther into it I got the less I cared.”see full review » see other reviews »
“There are stories coming in from the edges of the world that the magic is gone. Ged, now leader of Mages, teams up with an relatively unimportant son of a prince in adventure to find out what is happening, if anything.”Ellie wrote this review Sunday, October 13, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“In this last book of the trilogy the now Archmage Ged journeys to that farthest shore--the ends of the earth--to defeat a wizard claiming to have conquered death--and draining out of the world music and magic as a result. Ged believes that the wish for immortality is the root of evil. A theme I could see in C.S. Lewis and is also at the heart of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. More overtly philosophical than the first two Earthsea books, like them its allegorical quality is obvious, but this one is still brim full of adventure and invention--and of course like all LeGuin's works beautifully written. I could wish that rather than the (to me) rather uninteresting Prince Arren that Ged had a companion we knew from the earlier books, such as Tenar. But then Prince Arren does make this book, like the others, a coming of age tale about a young person coming to grips with themselves and their world. And hey, LeGuin does make up for that a great deal with the awesomeness of her dragons.”Lisa Maria C wrote this review Monday, September 23, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“It was alright, not as good as the first one.”mermaidhair wrote this review Tuesday, June 25, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A journey, perhaps through the waters of Jung's collective unconscious, to find the hidden inner self that may have been festering and confront it. An interesting take on self exploration with a parallel character track to emphasize that this is another way of coming of age.”beelzefuzz wrote this review Saturday, June 1, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“The third installment in Le Guin's Earthsea Cycle is nearly as good as ther first. We return to our hero who has now become the Archmage of Earthsea, but trouble is brewing as magic seems to be failing. Accompanied by a young princeling, he sets off to discover the source of the fading, knowing all the while that it will likely lead him to his own end.”Justin J wrote this review Monday, December 10, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“It's a shame that it took me until now to read this book, which is as old as I am. As I write this, my fortieth birthday looms only a few weeks ahead of me, and the third novel of Earthsea rings true for me in its depiction of the wizard Ged, a.k.a. Sparrowhawk, beginning to come down off the crest of his career. After a youth full of mighty deeds and daring quests, Ged has progressed so far as to be elected Archmage of Roke, as it were the Dumbledore of his world. Whether due to this more settled way of life, or the feeling of becoming old, or perhaps the sense of the destined ends for which has striven finally coming together, this book finds Ged restless to sail out to the limits of the island-studded world of Earthsea. And it is the arrival on Roke of a young prince named Arren, bearing the disturbing news that magic is going out of the world, that gives the Archmage the chance he needs to embark on one last quest.
But this book imbibes more than the spirit of men at the height of their power, beginning to descend toward old age. In Arren, it also drinks of youth gaining experience, of boyhood turning into manhood, of hero-worship ripening into a loving companionship concocted of equal parts compassion, trust, and self-sacrifice. When LeGuin writes of Arren "falling in love" with Ged, she does so in the same sense in which T. H. White wrote of Lancelot falling in love with Arthur. Princeling offers himself to wizard as a servant, follows him as puppy follows master, and seems ready to give up even his own destiny as a ruler of the island of Enlad.
But as the pair sail out toward the bitter end of civilization, facing a succession of horrors that bear witness to an evil will bent on destroying all life, the direction of flow changes. Increasingly it appears that the wizard will use up the last of his wizardry to secure for his companion the throne of all Earthsea. And it is not magic alone, but also the strength of body and spirit to master adversity, to face death, and to fight for life both for himself and his friend—no longer "master"—that will restore the Balance that preserves the magical world of Earthsea.
I read the first two books of this series, A Wizard of Earthsea and The Tombs of Atuan, almost a decade ago. At that time, I think I was discouraged from continuing the series because of the rumor that the books became increasingly tied up in Taoist mysticism and/or feminist ideology. I am glad to say these rumors do no justice to this beautiful book, which concludes what was once considered the "Earthsea Trilogy"—though there are now two more novels (written much later) and an anthology of short stories to go with it. On the other hand, I am sad to think I missed out so long on what really could be the most beautifully written book I have read this year.
In mythopoeic world-building, Ursula LeGuin is easily the equal of J. R. R. Tolkien. In economy of words—this magnificent book being a mere 259 pages long—she has no equal. In a work of fantasy that almost obliterates the boundary between prose and poetry, this book could almost be sung. And when it ends, this book leaves one with a wistful feeling, as though one wished to re-enter its strange, wonderful realm and stay there a while longer. To do so, one will have to explore the later books of Earthsea: Tehanu, The Other Wind, and Tales from Earthsea, regardless of the rumor that their author had lost her feel for Earthsea by the time she wrote them. Maybe, when magic does drain out of a world, memory can pour it back in. ”
“I really felt like this book dragged. I read the entire series and the farther into it I got the less I cared.”Suzi1138 wrote this review Friday, July 20, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This was probably my favorite Earthsea story as Ged and Arren travel and adventure together. ”PattiE wrote this review Tuesday, July 10, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Found it difficult to get into this one. I think because it was more philosophical than the rest I kept going over details in my mind to try to work out the metaphors. I can't say that I got very far! It was, however, a very interesting perspective on Sparrowhawk once he had grown up and made me wonder whether when I'm older I'll look back at my earlier worries and ambitions and realise that they didn't matter that much anyway!”FuzzyMcWuzzy wrote this review Sunday, May 13, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No