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Pavane (1968)

av Keith Roberts

Andra författare: Se under Andra författare.

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1,2564211,828 (3.67)64
1588: Queen Elizabeth is felled by an assassin's bullet. Within the week, the Spanish Armada had set sail, and its victory changed the course of history. 1968: England is still dominated by the Church of Rome. There are no telephones, no television, no nuclear power. As Catholicism and the Inquisition tighten their grip, rebellion is growing.… (mer)
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» Se även 64 omnämnanden

engelska (40)  franska (1)  italienska (1)  Alla språk (42)
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It is on a few of the “Top 100″ book lists which is how I came to it.

A strange kinda dystopian kinda fantasy kinda novel.

I liked it but am not sure why. ( )
  Ken-Me-Old-Mate | Sep 24, 2020 |
Pavane is a novel consisting of six interlinked short stories set in an alternate history England where Elizabeth I was assassinated and the country was dominated by the church. It's set in the 1960s and under the church's rule the country has not progressed as far still being largely a feudalist medieval society with the main vehicles of haulage being road going steam trains, of which the first story of the six stories is about.

The second story is about the means of communication used in the country, being semaphore, controlled by a guild who're reasonably powerful and independent and a boy who aspires to be a signalman.

I found the first two, and second last stories were the most enjoyable of the bunch. The world in which they're all set is an interesting creation with distinct steampunk vibes in parts, however at times I found the characters were a bit shallow.

Still, it was an interesting alternate history science fiction book written in 1968 that's worth a look. ( )
  HenriMoreaux | Jun 6, 2020 |
This is a series of six short stories set in an alternative England in the 1960's where Elizabeth I had been assassinated and the Spanish had taken over the country. The land is still run in a feudal way, and the Catholic Church has a vice like grip on the country. The six snapshots are set in Dorset, with a few names changed ,but most the same.

There is very little technology in this world, most things are transported using steam wagons, and messages are sent via signal towers, via the guild of signalmen. Electricity is banned, only the church may use it, and the Inquisition is still plying its gruesome trade.

Some of the stories are better than the others, the signaller was my favourite, about a boy joking the guild and running his own semaphore station. In some of the stories Roberts has woven in to the stories the old folk, or fairies, almost as a pagan response to the catholic domination.

It reminded me a little of steampunk, just derived for the Elizabethan era rather than the Victorian era. The land he has created has been well though out, it it just the characters and the plots were not as strong. ( )
  PDCRead | Apr 6, 2020 |
Like many self-indulgent writers, Roberts' main problem is self-indulgence. Unlike many self-indulgent writers, however, it is that very thing that is the draw here. Five pages after you've only just resisted the urge to scrap this purple bridge to nowhere -- in which he's given into that self-indulgent tendency to ramble off twenty pages of inane imagery, tedious psychologizing, and over-worked technical mechanics of the world [the opening train running salvo; and the workings of the semaphores (although, maybe if I knew something more than nothing about either, there would have been some novel angle within the descriptions, but I don't think so)] -- that same self-indulgence inexorably pulls you into the world, as you feel the slowly emerging sense of a real person and their real social position [esp. the semaphore operator].

Otherwise, it's become clear that it's never a good sign when my "thoughts" about a work quickly become abstract, the work provoking general rather than work-specific questions. Here, namely: alternate history's reflexive inclusion within science fictional categories makes absolutely no sense [not to say that the 'playing out' of the post-jonbar turn can't be sf, just that the initial assumption that it is is incorrect], especially as, if it needs a genre outside of itself, it should obviously be fantasy. And, at that, the toying around with the "Old Ones" and pagan history of England seemed laughable and a forced inclusion of what seems to have been a mid-to-late-century English neo-pagan-revivalist obsessions. If the turn is a truncated Reformation, then pining for lost religion that skips over the most recent seems far-fetched.

That said, even considering PAVANE as alternate history seems a stretch--as if we don't need actual proof of the playing out of the hinge in the text itself, just his explicit reassurance that it's happened and played out this way. Absent the preface, would anyone be able to surmise any of that sixteenth-century history from the subsequent chapters? More bluntly, how exactly does Elizabeth's assassination in 1588 engender literally any of the twentieth-century consequences we see on display here? Where the fuck are the Spanish, then? A more concerned reader might be sidestruck by the old school English anti-Popery on display here [whether refracted through contemporary Mertonian filters or not], but, given the lack of an authorial voice at all here outside of the stifling loquaciousness of setting and minute movement description, I found the bias seeping through on these points as at least a quaint sign of life. One realizes halfway through, as well, that we're dealing with a fix-up novel--and one only haphazardly fixed-up at that. ( )
1 rösta Ebenmaessiger | Oct 5, 2019 |
Pavane is a classic alternate history tale. The novel is essentially a series, lightly interwoven, of novelettes and a novella, and most of the chapters were published individually in magazines in 1966, and then the novel was created and published in 1968 in the UK and 1969 in the United States. There are six primary stories as well as a prologue and coda. Each chapter gives us a different view of the alternate world beginning in 1968 when the story begins. The stories told are personal stories of lives lived in this alternate world, subtly interwoven.

The basic setup premise here is that the Protestant reformation didn't succeed and the Catholic Church's allies captured England and overturned things in mainland Europe. There are quite a few detailed reviews here on LT and elsewhere that cover various aspects of this novel in more detail then I would or could. The stories in this book are very good and put the reader fully into an imagined history that never was. Each segment pulls the reader into different lives and stories that are both heartbreaking and heartwarming to varying degrees. All in all a very satisfying read. A good knowledge of English places (which I lack) would probably have heightened my enjoyment. It would be difficult to not think there was an anti-catholic agenda or bias behind this, because the message is that papal supremacy would consciously hold the English/European world back from progress. At least for a long time. Oh, let us not forget the inquisition because the book does not let us forget it. One of mankind's finest moments to be sure.

"The Signaller" is a terrific chapter in the book. In this tale, the story of the early life and early death of a young boy who joins the signal corps, one becomes immersed in this imaginary England and this story alone is a 5 star read with a touch of magic that breaks your heart.

Another chapter, "Brother John", moves us forward to the alternate 1985 in which the inquisition still reigns and witnessing it drives Brother John into madness and yet it ignites in him a rage that spreads and we get the first hints that the people are going to actively rebel against the papist overlords. Another heartbreaking story. In fact I can say that every chapter is full of heartbreak.

In a very unique way this is a magnificent book. Recommended and I would especially recommend this to readers of historical fiction. ( )
1 rösta RBeffa | Sep 12, 2019 |
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Roberts evokes this imaginary England with a persuasive attention to detail and a grandeur of vision that I find irresistible.
 
The idea of lyrical storytelling - something that doesn't exactly tell a concrete story, but keeps dancing around its point long enough for you to get the idea... is both the great joy and great frustration of Pavane. It's entirely appropriate for it to take its name from the dance, as it is stately, complex, and somewhat obscure. This is a book to read once, get stuck, return to with a clear head, blast through, and then read again in search of deeper meanings. They are definitely there, and they are definitely worth finding.
 

» Lägg till fler författare (10 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
Roberts, Keithprimär författarealla utgåvorbekräftat
典已, 杉本Omslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Burns, JimOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Dillon, DianeOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Dillon, LeoOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
道雄, 越智翻訳medförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
O'Conner, DavidOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Powers, Richard M.Omslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
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On a warm July evening of the year 1588, in the royal palace of Greenwich, London, a woman lay dying, an assassin's bullets lodged in abdomen and chest.
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Wikipedia på engelska (1)

1588: Queen Elizabeth is felled by an assassin's bullet. Within the week, the Spanish Armada had set sail, and its victory changed the course of history. 1968: England is still dominated by the Church of Rome. There are no telephones, no television, no nuclear power. As Catholicism and the Inquisition tighten their grip, rebellion is growing.

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