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It could be argued that it's a bit morally dubious, as Adam Reith basically contemptuously murders and denounces various ancient races for the way they live their lives-it's all a bit Robinson Crusoe shooting the "cannibals"-but to do so is probably to overlook the fact that these are adventure stories.
Knowing how deeply Vance explores ideas of social custom in his other books, it's probably a deliberate exploration of these themes.
Sadly though, I finished all four thinking the books never got started. It's absolutely worth a read, and not a difficult one at all but I just wish the characters were a bit more solid and things became a little more developed.
Many others seem to rank this as top of their Vance reading lists, so I'm not sure what I'm missing.
I read all of the volumes separately, so perhaps that's the problem, but I'd definitely say that there are much better places to start with this marvellous, overlooked author.
I read this book for the first time in English when I was 15 years old which was not easy since I'm Dutch and I just keep re-reading it round every 5 years or so.
And every time I finish it, I wonder why it's still not made in to a movie. I think it's brilliant.
Jun 09, Chris Gager rated it really liked it. Ahhh, Jack Vance's world s I've been away too long. This one is a bit more of the fantasy realm than my previous read, "The Demon Princes," but is also a collection of several short novels in a series.
In this case it's four novels, while "The Demon Princes" is five I think. Here the setting a planet with multiple alien races and a confusing history - I'm sure Mr.
The origin stories the locals give out when asked are amusingly nutty unscientific to say th Ahhh, Jack Vance's world s The origin stories the locals give out when asked are amusingly nutty unscientific to say the least.
Or is it vice versa? JV or Fred W. Jack V. Part one is done. The similarities here with "The Demon Princes" are quite evident, particularly in the character of Reith, a cool, calm and collected badass in the mold of Kirth Gersen from Demon Princes.
Or, perhaps it ought to be the other way around as this book came first. The imagination and verbal skills of the author are consistently in evidence.
It's a page-turner, and not necessarily for any suspense, but for the great writing. Interesting - according to the bio at the end of the book JV was born in , but according to Wiki and G'reads he was born in ????????
A mystery I'm now well into book 2 and liking it even better than book 1. JV is really letting his creative chops rip as we visit the wacky city of Settra, where it's not considered good form to impede a paid assassin in the execution of his contract.
Deep doo-doo will await you! The first book focused on action: battles both small and large. This book is more Plus, it's pretty funny, which is par for the course with Mr.
Not really a lot of sci-fi here but the "realistic fantasy" descriptions and plot twists are an ongoing treat. This stuff is like word-crack, it crowds out all my other reading!
I agree! Think Arthur C. Unlike the loner Gerson, however, he has an ever enlarging entourage to assist him in his schemes to get back to Earth.
Vance's storytelling remains unsurpassed. The scene of Reith's trial before the "board" of Wankh bigwigs and triumph over the machinations of the duplicitous Wankhmen is awesome and inventive.
Back to it with 3 The Dirdir tonight. Almost nothing but Vance last night and I wonder if I'm getting a bit of fantasy overload. I wish I could read faster but I hope we get inside that Dirdir glass building.
Something tells me that we will. Convenient for him and Reith. Definitely NOT the case on what we presume to be the human home planet - Earth.
Some reviewers her have noted that the whole things seems to kind of peter out at the end, or, to put it differently, end rather abruptly.
Certainly there's more story to be had if Mr. Vance had desired to write it: a return to Earth and adventures there, followed by a return to Tschai and on and on The author chose to move on I think - I'm not aware of any more stories in the series.
Personal opinion Also, he is a bit of a superman, isn't he? I'm not sure it was ever revealed who had blown up his original mother ship.
LeGuin's "Earthsea" series. Can they or can't they swim????? In the classic pulp plot, stranded man becomes hero, leads fight against increasing dangerous enemy alien races, and gets the girl.
Gabble-gook is light, mostly comprehensible, confusing with so many races. Humor cranks the rating higher. The outlook is original Star Trek - we enforce peace on the universe.
With opposite new friends, taciturn dark stocky Traz and garrulous pale tall Anacho, Reith breaks each alien race apart from their associated imitative "men", and overcomes more villainous al In the classic pulp plot, stranded man becomes hero, leads fight against increasing dangerous enemy alien races, and gets the girl.
With opposite new friends, taciturn dark stocky Traz and garrulous pale tall Anacho, Reith breaks each alien race apart from their associated imitative "men", and overcomes more villainous allies.
Females are helpless pretty mysteries. Only scout Adam Reith survives - tall, lean, and dark-haired. Captured by Emblem nomads who worship pink moon Az and blue moon Baz, he escapes with their former boy chieftain straightforward Traz.
After befriending pretentiously-mannered Didirman Anacho, Reith takes the impoverished city of Pera from villainous Naga Goho and his thugs. He provokes the ruling Blue Chasch of Dadiche who hold his "boat" and attack in force.
Reith prefers surprise offense to defense. A common mythology, that imitative "sub-men" corpses produce imp babies, keeps them subservient to aliens.
Reith tries to convince men they can be civilized. He continually rescues beautiful Derl, Princess of Cath, from harm; she gives him her "last name", that only her husband may hear.
But their "erotic accomodation has long since run its course" p Reith must be both diplomatic and devious to avoid clothing and travel expenses incurred by her and fellow noble Dordolio, until, according to Yao custom, shame leads to suicide.
Lord Cizante regrets rash promises for his lost daughter, and Cath lacks the technology for a spaceship. To steal from a Wankh yard, Rieth enlists a dubious ally.
Zorfa is a Lokhar man, hair bleached white, skin dyed black - opposite of females. Reith sidesteps blame for her shame at his flirtation.
Cizante's assistant Helsse hires an assassin to deliver Death of the Twelve Touches. Under hypnosis, Helsse admits to being a Wankhman spy. Caught in the stolen Wankh spaceship, Reith wins free by exposing Wankhmen intermediates to their chiming Wankh rulers, who boot the traitors out.
False translations kept Wankh at war with Dirdir and dependent on Wankhmen. Wankhmen shot down the Earth ship and two Dirdir cities where signals originated.
The trio fight for the fortune needed to build a spaceship. Their Sivishe yard go-between for materials, elephantine Aila Woudiver, skims, swindles, then betrays one to the Glass Box, an enclosed arena for Hunts.
Kindly old craftsman Deine Zarre and his two innocent orphaned charges are breaths of niceness. Despite Traz and Anacho's urgings, Reith keeps him alive to continue helping with spaceship construction.
To escape, Reith enlists a girl to read a top secret book of maps, and nicknames her Zap after her group area designation. Withdrawn from addictive hormone suppressants, she grows womanly and enjoys "boisterous behavior".
The way back to Sivishe seems much longer than the way in. Zap has no other future than with Reith. Less haggling and fighting this time.
Running, swimming, pretending to board a ferry, and cleverness get him away from pursuers. Thankfully Woudiver gets punished justly. Reith gains their freedom by threatening to release secret maps.
With Anacho and Traz, they depart for Earth. Jul 06, E. Ellison rated it it was amazing. If it were possible to eat a mile long hot fudge sundae and not get sick, Vance's Planet of Adventure would be the readerly equivalent.
For me, at least. Adam Reith is a most splendid hero who accumulates a marvelous set of sidekicks to accomplish marvelous deeds in all manner of settings and situations on the planet Tchai.
I dig this out and reread it every few years for a time of totally satisfying, zero-calorie action adventure. For we Vance-lovers a select breed, to be sure part of the tre If it were possible to eat a mile long hot fudge sundae and not get sick, Vance's Planet of Adventure would be the readerly equivalent.
For we Vance-lovers a select breed, to be sure part of the treat in reading his works is the erudite dialog. Reminds me of a conversation I read about, wherein several acclaimed science fiction writers of decades past were discussing Vance's unique and stylized mode of dialog.
Two had decided it was "wooden. Probably time to pull my yellowed paperback out and read it yet again before the pages crackle and crumble.
Jun 26, Jamie rated it it was amazing Shelves: favorites. The deeper I got into this series, the more I loved it. Amazing world building and depictions of beautiful and bizarre alien landscapes.
Plus nonstop action and adventure to boot. This is a pulp series, no doubt, but a classic. Dec 27, TJ rated it it was amazing.
The Planet of Adventure is an omnibus of four Jack Vance science fiction novels. These four novels constitute The Planet of Adventure series.
Each of the four novels in the Planet of Adventure series involve the story of Adam Reith who is marooned on the planet Tschai where four major, intelligent civilizations exist, each ruled by a different species and an enemy of the others.
They are the Chasch, the Wankh, the Dirdir and the Pnume. Each of these considers itself superior to others and has hu The Planet of Adventure is an omnibus of four Jack Vance science fiction novels.
Each of these considers itself superior to others and has humans as servants. The humans try to resemble their masters through the use of costumes, headgear, props, surgery and perhaps genetic manipulation.
These human underlings are called the Chaschmen, Wankhmen, Dirdirmen and Pnumekins. Each group considers itself to be the only real humans. There are also various enclaves of free humans who are not servants, but they are referred to as sub-men and are considered inferior to all others.
Reith's main goal besides surviving is to steal or build an airship to escape Tschai and return to Earth. He wants to alert humans on Earth to the presence of the four advanced civilizations on Tschai and inform them that humans, originally from Earth, are being kept as servants and slaves.
He is also concerned about the safety of humans back on Earth because both the Dirdir and now the Chasch have spaceships and know about Earth and the humans who reside there.
Below are brief reviews of each of the novel in this series. I have more detailed reviews under each novel's title.
City of the Chasch City of the Chasch, also known as The Chasch, was first published as a paperback novel in It is the first of four novels in the Planet of Adventure series about the planet Tschai A Earth starship far from home receives an unusual signal from a planet that is light years from Earth.
It indicates that intelligent beings might inhabit a previously unknown world. When the ship arrives at the planet Tschai the crew decides to send down two of their scouts in a 30 foot scout-boat resembling a miniature spaceship.
A few moments after they depart, however, a missile strikes the main ship, totally destroying it and damaging the scout-boat.
The two scouts are able to repair the damages enough to crash-land on Tschai. Reith survives but is stuck up in a tree, and the other scout lives only long enough to be beheaded by a primitive looking man with a sword and a strange silver emblem on his hat.
Reith later learns that these are called Emblem Men. The man is harshly reprimanded by a person who appears to be the leader, but their interaction is suddenly interrupted by the sound of a sky raft above.
The group of men with emblems on their hats Emblem Men depart and hide when a sky raft approaches. It turns out to be a group of massive creatures and what appear to be their human servants.
Reith later learns that these are the Blue Chasch and their Chaschmen. The Blue Chasch are non-human, intelligent creatures.
The humans with them wear headpieces and costumes to make them look somewhat like the Blue Chasch, but they are humans and they clearly do the bidding of the Blue Chasch.
Soon another space ship approaches so the Blue Chasch and their Chaschmen hide themselves and their sky-raft.
This ship belongs to the tall, thin, technologically sophisticated Dirdirs and they are accompanied by Dirdirmen who are humans who are modified with dress wear and by possibly genetic engineering to look somewhat like their Dirdir leaders.
As soon as they land the Blue Chasch ambush them and chase them away after killing some. They then take Reith's scout-boat and depart.
When the Emblem Men return, Reith calls out to them because he is still hanging way up in a tree and has no means of getting down. Fortunately he has better luck than the other scout and they help him down from the tree and adopt him as a servant.
Reith learns the language of the Emblem Men and by challenging them to hand to hand combat he is able to rise in status. The Emblem Men and their lifestyle are fascinatingly described with their worship of the two moons, religious beliefs, customs and taboos.
Reith also learns about the Chasch, Wankh, Dirdir, Pnume and other intelligent beings who inhabit the planet.
The Pnume are the original inhabitants. The others arrived by spaceship from other planets. Each group of beings have humans as servants who are adapted by costumes and headgear to look somewhat like their masters.
Each group of humans thinks they are the only true humans and that they will eventually be like their masters.
The Chasch go so far as to cut open a dead Chaschman or Chashwoman and insert a Chasch imp into the dead body. They then bring it out for display to other Chaschman and tell them that that they are currently Chasch larvae and that when they die they will become real Chasch and rule other Chaschman.
It is all a ploy to give humans a sense of hope while keeping them enslaved. Humans who are not modified and used as servants but live on their own, such as the Emblem Men, are considered human mutants and are called sub-men.
Sub-men are all looked down upon by everyone else. City of Chasch involves Reith's visit to a main Chasch city to attempt to retrieve his scout-boat.
Reith is joined by the youthful former leader of the Emblem Men, named Traz Onmale, and a Dirdirman whose life he saves, named Ankhe at afram Anacho.
A minor romance even develops between Keith and Ylin-Ylan, the Flower of Cath, whom he rescues and then protects. She is one of Vance's physically attractive but poorly developed female characters.
Of the four novels that comprise Planet of Adventure, the City of the Chasch is the least interesting, but it is still well worth reading.
I recommend starting with the first book and reading all four. Servants of the Wankh Servants of the Wankh was first published as a paperback novel in In the Vance Integral Edition the name Wankh was changed to Wannek because of the meaning of the British slang words wank or wanker.
It is well worth reading. In the previous novel Reith had rescued, and was accompanied by, a Yao woman named Ylin-Ylan who had been kidnapped by a religious cult.
Reith was informed by Ylin-Ylan that her father was very wealthy Yao who lived in Cath and would reward Reith for rescuing her. Reith wants the money to try to obtain or build a spaceship to return to Earth.
So he makes plans to take Ylin-Ylan back to Cath. There is an adventurous and tragic journey by sea followed by encounters with the Yao and their intricate and rigid customs.
Reith thinks that to present himself to Ylin-Ylan's father and obtain his thanks and a reward, all he has to do is explain how he rescued his daughter after she had been abducted.
But he finds out that the type of clothes he wears when he meets the father and what his social status is considered to be in Yao culture is far more important than the act of saving a daughter's life.
It is a satirical critique of a society that is reminiscent of some cultures that have existed here on Earth. What Reith considers rational and normal is frequently dismissed because of the laws and social rules that vary widely from one culture to another.
It is very unpredictable. How easy it is to offend others, to get into trouble or to be ridiculed when you don't know the expectations and social ground rules of an unfamiliar culture.
The second part of the novel involves Reith's interaction with the Wankh culture and his attempt to steal a space ship.
Reith hires a Lokhar named Zarfo who is to assist him with the stealing of a Wankh space ship. Other Lokhars work as technicians at the space yards at Ao Hidis where the Wankh keep and maintain their space ship fleet.
Zarfo acts as an intermediary with other Lokhars to try to recruit them to work with Reith to steal and operate a space ship.
No space ship has ever been stolen so the yards are only lightly guarded. The Wankh are amphibious, plump reptilian like creatures who are at war with the Dirdirs and Dirdirmen.
They are a very intelligent, mysterious alien creature who use chime like sounds to communicate. The only other beings on the planet who can understand Wankh communication are their underlings, the Wankhmen.
The Wankhmen are humans who with costumes, props, surgery and possible genetic manipulation look somewhat similar to the Wankh. The Wankhmen represent the Wankh at diplomatic functions and are intermediaries in all communication between the Wankh and others.
They have a life that is much easier and more rewarding than the humans who serve the Dirdirs, Chasch and Pnume. They also have much more power because they serve as the sole translators for the Wankh.
The Wankhmen oppose all changes because they want to maintain everything the way it is. The Wankh culture and interactions between the Wankh and Wankhmen is fascinating, and Reith's encounters with them become an intriguing adventure.
As often the case, Vance not only builds detailed, amazing worlds and cultures with fascinating alien creatures, but he uses the settings for humor and satire.
Here we have a dazzling display of social anthropological insights punctuated with satire and ironic humor. Vance takes all of this to even greater heights in The Dirdir and The Pnume.
The previous novel City of the Chasch is simpler, lighter, and easier to read with less of the elaborate, intricate, world building that we find in Servants of the Wankh.
Both are highly entertaining books that I did not want to put down. The Dirdir The Dirdir was first published as a paperback novel in It has also been called Planet of Adventure 3 and Tschai.
The Dirdir is the third of four novels in the Planet of Adventure series involving the planet Tschai. It is a haunting novel, beautifully written by a master writer and is rich in symbolism, world building and social satire.
In The Dirdir we have almost constant suspenseful action as the Dirdirs hear about Reith and decide that they want to track him down, interrogate him and then kill him.
Reith is in a human Lokhar village but flees. But Reith, as usual, meets danger head on by confronting it. Not only does he decide to try to outwit and defeat the Dirdirs who are pursuing him, but he makes plans to build a space ship by purchasing parts from the Dirdirs to assemble one.
Unfortunately this will be very expensive, and he has no funds so must come up with a plan for finding money or sequins. The currency on the Tschai planet consists of different colored sequins.
Each color is worth a specific amount. These sequins actually grow as crystal like nodes from the chrysospine plant in a large uranium enriched valley called the Carabas or the Black Zone.
Humans, human hybrids and others travel to the Carabas to try to gain wealth by locating sequins. Unfortunately about a third who visit there are killed and eaten by Dirdirs because Carabas is the Dirdir Hunting Preserve and is used as a sports hunting grounds by the Dirdirs.
Although they are a highly intelligent, technologically advanced species, the Dirdirs are also fierce predators who love to hunt for sport and have a special fondness for human flesh.
Anybody who is able to get in and out of Carabas with sequins may keep them but very few become rich this way. Reith carefully calculates the chances and decides that he has to develop some sort of innovative plan to turn the odds to his advantage.
After being both hunted and a hunter in suspenseful engagements in the Dirdir hunting grounds, Reith has to deal with a scoundrel of an innkeeper who tries to steal from him and who betrays even his own neighbors.
Then he elects to hire Aila Woudiver, a want to be Dirdirman, who is deceitful, cruel and unethical but seems to be the only one able to coordinate the assembling of a spaceship.
We also encounter the Glass Box hunting complex in the Dirdir city where Reith's friend, Anacho, after being captured, is to be hunted in a public sporting event.
Reith plans to enter the complex and to help his friend escape while armed with a power gun, explosives and a rope.
Dirdirs think that any living creature that is not a Dirdir is not worth consideration. They feel that they are superior to all other intelligent species and they view humans as vermin.
The other dominate species on Tschai feel the same way about themselves. Their human servants are treated as inferiors and these servants in turn think that free humans are subhuman and not real human beings.
There are times in our own history when one group of people considered another group to be inferior or of lesser value and all societies seem to have criteria for social status and prestige.
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Click here. Advanced Search. Legendary Planet Adventure Path 5E. Selected Option:. Watermarked PDF. Hardcover, Standard Color Book.
To the Stars and Beyond! Extensive gazetteers of the Legendary Planet universe and the ecology and society of the key planets featured in each adventure Expanded rules for adventuring on alien worlds, including gravity, vacuum, radiation, navigating the void, vehicles, races, chases, alien viruses, and more Plus a 7-chapter short-story set in the backdrop of the Legendary Planet saga, "Anasya's Journal" by award-winning author Chris A.
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Hope the binding holds out until its time to hit the table because i'll probably be a year reading it before i'm ready to run it!
Have you considered the fact that you're buying an Adventure Path and not an Artbook? So, is this book essentially a compilation of the 5e Legendary Worlds and Legendary Planets resources published by this company?
It's all eight of the Legendary Planet adventures, including all appendices, the player's guide, gazetteers, magic and tech items, character options, vehicle and sci-fi rules, and so on, all re-proofed and edited and buffed to a shine!
It does not include the Legendary Worlds series or the Stargates expansion. Any chance of a preview that actually shows some of the content of the book rather than just a few images?
Sure thing! I've adjusted the preview section to be a page section in the middle of the adventures chapters! I had set it before to cover the Table of Contents as I figured that would be more generally useful, but a slice of the adventure is now on display!
OK that's weird. I set both the PDF and the Flash preview to pages I'll contact Publisher Services and see what's going on. See All Ratings and Reviews.
Whether we do a compilation version remains to be seen, based on sales of the individual books, but we're looking into it. This I guess is for Jason : Could you post the table of contents?
I already have all the volumes. Is there anything extra here? A substantial amount of new artwork. Another thorough cycle of editing and proofing.
Foreword from Erik Mona Everything else should already be in there. Thilo G. An Endzeitgeist. James E. See All Ratings and Reviews.
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