There were times that called for the use of ancient and powerful words, the acknowledgment of humans in a crisis everywhere and everywhen since language was first invented. This was one of them. "Shit." Aurora said.
I had a dream about Amber last night. Not the Corwin or Merlin version, but the Oberon one. I thought this was kind of strange, but it got me thinking about Amber a little and the prequel novels.
I read John Betancourt's "Dawn of Amber" trilogy in hardback as each was published and anxiously waited for each successive book in the series. I don't have my timeline firmly in mind, but I remember buying "Shadows of Amber" (book 4) with the notion that book 5 would be a ways away and then with the understanding that book 5 would never happen. I had heard that book 4 ended on a cliffhanger of sorts so I didn't read it. Pulling it from my bookshelf, I realzed that it was copyright 2005, which means that it's been sitting unread on my shelf for ten years now.
So, as I contemplate Amber I have to ask: if I never read the book then did "Shadows of Amber" ever happen? In my mind there is a Betancourt Trilogy, then the ten Zelazny books, then a small stack of short stories. That's all there is to canon Amber.
What do you think? Should I break down and read "Shadows of Amber" or simply pine away over potential unrealized?
personally, i dont think the prequels fit into the Zelazny Amber universe. I see them more as a shadow of the real stories... perhaps in a shadow bearing a broken pattern. there are many reflections, after all....
It depends a good deal on what your purpose in reading them would be. I was impressed by some of the ideas and events of book 4, but of course the story does not get any resolution.
So, if you want to add to the 'cannon', yes I would say read it. If you want to finish the story, don't bother I think you will be less satisfied with the end of book 4 than the end of book 3 as the cutoff.