Tales From Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #5)

By Ursula K. Le Guin

Rating: 4 stars

This is a collection of four long-ish short stories and one novella set in Le Guin’s Earthsea universe. The stories span the history of her world, and there are some notes about the history of Earthsea at the end of the book. I enjoyed all the stories in the collection, seeing more of Earthsea, particularly The Finder, the tale of the founding of the great School for wizards on Roke and On the High Marsh, a story set when Sparrowhawk was Archmage. The former is interesting for me because it fills in a degree of backstory that has been hinted at in the books, and the latter because it gives us a little more insight into Ged.

Dragonfly is the novella at the end that bridges Tehanu and The Other Wind, the latter of which I’m now quite anxious to read. It’s set sometime just after the events of Tehanu and tells of the first woman to arrive at Roke to study magic for centuries, and hints that her entry will shake the world.

I enjoyed the style of storytelling in this book. It touches on the themes relating to gender and power that Le Guin started to explore in Tehanu, but all the stories have more of a, well, story, to them and she doesn’t seem quite so angry towards her characters any more. A good read for fans of Earthsea, although best read after the first four novels in the series.

Book details

ISBN: 9781842552148
Publisher: Orion Children's Books
Year of publication: 2001

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