There are infinite worlds made of shadow, and only one born of the royal Amber line can navigate them. Among the shadows now move creatures of chaos and darkness, venturing off the black road to incite war, disease, and suffering among the shadow lands. The black road cuts through all, right up to light that is Amber. Corwin of Amber is an expert at navigating the shadow realms, but faced with his own anger and hatred in the flesh, will he be able to overcome it?
The second novel in Zelazny’s epic Amber Chronicles picks up where the first left off, with Corwin recovering form his injuries and going in search of new avenues to the throne of Amber. As we meet a slightly wider cast of characters among the shadow worlds, we also learn more of Amber’s history and the intricate family dynamics. Most importantly, we see the results of Corwin’s curse on Eric – a curse even he doesn’t know the bounds of.
All of these novels are on the short side, but this one actually felt shorter despite it actually being longer than the first. There was a lot of travelling and explanation of how Corwin was morphing the shadows he was passing through, and not a lot of plot or character development. Typical second book slump. The female characters might serve some sort of point in the future, but in this particular volume they felt rather gratuitous. As a man over 100-years-old, you would think Corwin would be a little better at controlling his urges. He also spends a lot of his time thinking about these women, which is why I think they might have some purpose later on – Dara especially. Overall, this installment didn’t wow me, but I’m curious to see where the plot goes.
HHC Rating: 3.5 Stars.
Other Reviews in this Series: Book 1 – Nine Princes in Amber Book 3 – Sign of the Unicorn (Review Available July 23rd) Book 4 – The Hand of Oberon (Review Available August 6th) Book 5 – The Courts of Chaos (Review Available August 27th) Book 6 – Trumps of Doom (Review Available September 17th) Book 7 – Blood of Amber (Review Available October 8th) Book 8 – Sign of Chaos (Review Available October 29th) Book 9 – Knight of Shadows (Review Available November 19th) Book 10 – Prince of Chaos (Review Available December 10th)