Review: The Guns of Avalon

Series: The Chronicles of Amber: #2

Now I had to find a place, a place resembling another place – one which no longer existed. I located the path. I took it.

In Nine Princes in Amber , Corwin attacked his brother Eric in Amber. He lost and was blinded and thrown in prison. Conveniently, Princes of Amber have a remarkable ability to heal . On top of that, Dworkin (who created the Trumps and knows more about the Pattern than probably anyone) just so happens to be locked up as well and pops into his cell. . One thing leads to another, and Corwin is free. Of course he wants to take another crack at the throne. How though?

Well, it turns out that once upon a time some hundreds of years ago (it’s a bit unclear just how long the Princes of Amber can live), Corwin ruled in a Shadow named Avalon. 1 And when he did, he made a potentially world changing discovery: Avalon had a gunpowder equivalent that works in Amber. Somehow or another though, Corwin’s Avalon fell, but that’s fine. Just find another Shadow of Avalon that’s close enough. And bump into none other than Lancelot, because it’s just that sort of story.

Along the way, he bumps into a supposed grand-niece, who can apparently walk the Pattern as Corwin and his siblings can, which is interesting. There is certainly more to that story that I’m sure we’ll see later.

When we finally get back to Amber, there’s a problem. Dark forces traveling on a Black Road that crosses from Shadow to Shadow are attacking. Corwin has to make a choice: use the opportunity to dethrone Eric and get his revenge or lose the element of surprise and use his guns to defend his home.

Overall, it’s a pretty crazy book. It doesn’t have quite the sense of wonder and discovery that Nine Princes had and I’m not really a fan of it leaning quite so heavily on Autherian mythology, but I personally like the story more. Corwin knows what’s going on now, which makes for a rather more active (even if still not particularly likable) protagonist.

Good enough to read onwards. That’s for sure.

  1. Yes. It’s that Avalon. ↩︎