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Calibandar

Andrzej Sapkowski

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yes, that's what I've been talking about earlier in the thread. it's not an alternate ending, it's a joke/parody story written as a wedding gift for a pair of writers/critics he knew.

eta: as for the series thing: the short stories may be read as stand-alones; they share characters and settings, and there is a certain sequence of events, but basically you don't need to continue reading the proper novels after you've read the stories. The second collection does prepare the ground for the saga, but still, you may just as well finish there (it is however advisable to read the stories first if you're going to continue reading the novels).

(sapkowski himself had the idea of writing a longer thing well into the stories, it wasn't his original intention).

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From what I read, it's a five-book series with something about Elves in the titles, and two preceding short-story collections. Wikipedia seems to confirm this.

I have read two of the stories included in the Last Wish. They stand by themselves. They do not appear to be part of a larger arc either, though they very possibly may play a role in the later books.

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I believe several of the characters in The Last Wish play major roles in the five-novel sequence. So whilst The Last Wish is stand-alone, the novels are apparently stronger if you read The Last Wish first. And to be mildly confusing, the second short story collection doesn't appear to be being published in the UK at the moment. They're going straight into the novels.

There's also a PC RPG coming out called The Witcher (due in September) based on the world which is attracting some positive pre-release press.

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are you sure about that,wert? the last couple of stories in the second book are a direct introduction to what happens in the saga, it would be *very* confusing if they didn't publish them.

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I asked my contact at Gollancz and apparently the fate of the later collection depends on how well The Last Wish does (a slim collection of short stories is not a guaranteed big-seller in today's market). That said, they are going ahead with publishing the five-novel series according to Amazon, starting in August 2008.

Throughout Oxford I kept thinking I meant to talk to you about something, and I suddenly remembered it was this series. After I got home. D'oh! :P

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I just finished writing the review to it, after having to get it from a US dealer that happened to import it. Like most everyone else, I really loved these stories and the send-ups of certain outworn tropes. Can't wait to read the others when they are released :D

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Nice review, Larry. Linked to it on the blog :cheers:

I'm confused about what order the books are in though. I think, contrary to what Wikipedia says, The Last Wish is the first book released in the series, followed by Sword of Destiny and then the five-volume novel series. Gollancz are apparently jumping straight into the novel series, starting with Blood of the Elves a year from now.

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Thanks for the link - and the response there :D

I too was confused a bit, but I figure if proven otherwise, I can easily edited that part. Shall be interesting to see how the rest are released.

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I've got to say, these books look exactly like what I desperately wanted the translated Vampire Hunter D novels to be. While I love D and his books--the translations are terrible and often make the complete books laughable. The Witcher I think is going to be a lot of fun. I can't wait to read these.

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I just finished "The Last Wish", and I loved it. Sapkowski's style is brilliant, and his themes were surprisingly profound. This is all not to mention the humor which permeates most of the stories. I would recommend this book to all fantasy fans.

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To the people who read it in Russian: is there a place to get these books in the US? I looked at the game and am sufficiently intrigued to read the books first, but I can't afford ordering them from Europe.

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The Book Depository is your friend. Free round-the-world shipping!

Thanks, but that only seems to have the one book that was published in English. However, it is very good to know that such a place exists (now if only the dollar would do me a favor and increase in value against the pound...).

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Do you know how I can convert the money on that website you listed Wert? I really want this book and am willing to buy it but I just don't know how much American money 7.35 converts to from the British pound (I'm guessing). I tried a converter on google that said it'd be around 15 bucks American style...I just want to make sure before I jump in and charge my card y'know?

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The online converters are pretty accurate -- the current exchange rate is about $2 for every pound (2.0085 according to Yahoo). The only thing you have to keep in mind is that if you're buying with a credit card, they often to charge a conversion fee (mine charges 2%). So it'll indeed be around $15 (possibly plus tax).

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The online converters are pretty accurate -- the current exchange rate is about $2 for every pound (2.0085 according to Yahoo). The only thing you have to keep in mind is that if you're buying with a credit card, they often to charge a conversion fee (mine charges 2%). So it'll indeed be around $15 (possibly plus tax).

Cool, thanks! It is ordered and on its way.

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I picked The last wish up for its cover at Peadar's book launch, and now am glad to see it seems to not be rubbish.

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I was wondering if Sapkowski, like Robert Rankin, writes his stories down the pub. Some of them do have that same slightly mental streak of humour to them, although Jack Vance is probably a much closer comparison.

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