Completion Date: May 2007
Publication Year: Originally 1974, this version 1999
Received in 2007 during Buy a Friend a Book Month
Book Two in The Chronicles of Amber series

Reason for Reading: I think this series looks really good, and I had already read book 1 in it. I have to say again how happy I am that I received it back during Buy a Friend a Book Month.
Across the worlds of Shadow, Corwin, Prince of blood royal, heir to the throne of Amber, gathers his forces for an assault that will yeild up to him the crown that is rightfully his. But, a growing darkness of his own doing threatens Corwin's plans, an evil that stretches to the heart of the perfect kingdom itself where the demonic forces of Chaos mass to annihilate Amber and all whowould rule there.
For years I have seen this series at the bookstore, but never picked it up. I am glad that I am finally reading it now. It reads like one giant novel, with what happens in this book continuing on from what happened in the last.

The books in this series are very short, so I find that I have a hard time coming up with things to say about them so as to not reveal too much of the story. In the previous book, the story centred around getting to know the characters, in this book there is a lot more action. Brothers appear that were mentioned in the previous book, but no one knew where they were. It is basically a war in Amber, as the title of the book suggests, there are also guns.

This book seems to play around with time and space. Sometimes it seems to take place during the past with sword-fighting and valiant knights, and then other times it seems to take place during the present (well, Zelazny's present) with guns and leather jackets. For such a short book, a lot happens in it. Zelazny really plays around with shadows and what is real and not real. Characters reach the forefront, characters die, and a new foe becomes a threat.

Corwin is preparing to take over the kingdom of Amber for himself, and he has a lot of setbacks. It is very hard to sneak into Amber unnoticed. He is a very determined prince, though, and everytime something bad happens, he tries something else. He is not brilliant, though, because he is tricked in such a way that could lead to grave circumstances in the next books.

Parting Thoughts: My one beef with this series is the editing. For a book that was released so long ago, they had plenty of time spending some time copy editing before coming out with the collected works, and it does not look like they did at all. I was aware of this when I bought it, though, people mention it in Amazon reviews. I really enjoy the series, and it is much easier to read it this way than to track down the older books, so I will put up with the bad editing to find out what happens to Corwin next. I am looking forward to book three!


The Amber Chronicles is one of the great works of fantasy fiction, in my estimation. A very wild thrill ride.

It's so good to see a new generation of readers discovering it.

Another book of his I can recommend without reservation is Lord of Light, a very interesting riff on the Buddha legend.

I will be sure and keep my eyes out for it. It likely is easy to get at the second hand store.

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Since I was a little girl I have been fascinated with books. Early photos show me with a book in hand, even if it was not exactly my reading level... My first word was a made-up word meaning 'book', actually. I suppose I had my priorities at an early age... Over the years my interest in books has become one of the defining features of who I am as a person. You can probably call me a bookworm. While I have other interests, reading will always be the one I talk about the most, even if I am not focusing on it as much as I used to.