A pavane is a stately dance, one with all its steps set out, with a clear beginning and a foreseen end. To my ear, the word itself sounds. Pavane [Keith Roberts] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. A classic of alternate history, this novel is set in a twentieth century where the. Pavane [Keith Roberts] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.

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The feudal system is alive and well, as is the workings of the Inquisition. The narration by Steven Crossley was excellent; I recommend this version.

Pavane by Keith Roberts

After the tales of Rafe, Becky and Roberhs John, with the only common denominator being Dorset, we return to the Strange family.

There is a strong sense that the characters are playing a part in history which they may not have the power to alter.

But what is not in doubt is that Pavane remains a real tour de force. There may not be the technological horror of a holocaust, but power is everywhere, and with it cruelty. Read it, grasp at its brilliance, and be ready to come back again to revisit and ponder the deeper meaning.

It is a coherent and vivid vision, which almost convinces. One person found this helpful. A brief prologue provides an introduction to the dance.

Pavane – Keith Roberts

With a beginning and an end The language is absolutely gorgeous; descriptive, pavabe, conveying feeling and emotion, and successfully forming each character’s own world.

However, the book and the author remains fairly obscure in the genre, and I wonder if this can be attributed to these reasons: Rather than rational rule by capital and technology, Church and class and guild are the key powers. The stories were rather uneven, and in the midst of the interesting allohistorical details, Roberts keeps weaving “the faeries” and “the old ones” into the tales.


Roberts takes some pretty mighty swings at the Romish church and his main message may be how religion keeps progressive humanity back with a superstitious spear of fear and intimidation. Light doth but shame disclose. She is backed by a loyal seneschal. But that takes nothing away from the journeys that the reader has enjoyed; the musings on religion and history and science and violence; the strange familiarity or familiar strangeness of the world we glimpse in the pages.

The story that stays with me most is the second one, “The Signaller”, probably because I read it years and years ago in an anthology. roberys

The book comprises six interlocking stories of young people coming of age. There’s a problem loading this menu right now. The slow lumbering engine crisscrossing a Dorset of dispersed settlements and sparse populations decides the pace of this and, indirectly, subsequent measures of Pavane.

We see life through the eyes of a steam train driver, pzvane the perspective of a boy who joins the semaphore guild electronic communications being banned or unknownas brother in a religious craftsman order called to robrrts for the inquisition, from the perspective of a wealthy commoner being pursued by a nobleman and from the vantage point of a noblewoman.

A set of six linked stories set up as a dance,or pavane, if you will. The world building is impeccable. Almost two decades later, the ending doesn’t make sense to me any more, though it was perfectly mind-blowing to me at the time.


However, the whole contains a thread of gradual change, growing with each story and culminating in profound alteration.

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Pavane – Keith Roberts | Battered, Tattered, Yellowed, & Creased

Pacane a beginning, and an end…” she tucked her legs under her, as she sat beside the fire. The stories are self-contained, but some characters appear in latter stories as older or because their children are featured. Amazon Advertising Find, attract, and engage customers. Beneath, the locomotives waited brooding, hulks twice the height of a man, their canopies brushing the rafters.

The book itself gets its title, in my opinion, from a beautiful philosophical conversation in the final chapter, or Measure as the author robwrts them, between two of the characters. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.

The surprise of it is so overwhelming that going into it again, you expect the same experience, and it just can’t happen. So that was weird. Alas, the white boat is no innocent craft, but a smuggler’s vessel from Bermuda.

For a novel that is alternate history supposedly in the Sci Fi genre I have come out the end of the book feeling that the writing itself is beyond the sci fi fantasy pulp that is the vast majority of that genre.