I don't know about you, but I'm excited to read this month's selection. For decade's Jack Vance was an author whose name lurked only in dim rumors of serving as the inspiration for the D&D magic system. Even as a regular at the used book stores, his works just never crossed my path. It wasn't until a lucky find at the dawn of the digital publishing revolution that I stumbled on a Dying Earth omnibus.
That book really opened my eyes to new ways of looking at magic, and Vance's gentle touch showed me that Ring Lardner's dry and blink-and-you-miss it subtle humor could work in a fantasy settting. To my chagrin, I've only lately been informed that my Vance exposure is drastically limited. In fact, Dying Earth represents the only works of his I can say with any certainty that I have read. (It's possible a few of his stories were included in collections, and I just didn't realize I was reading one of the masters at the time.) I have no idea what to expect, only that it will be a pleasure to enjoy a few stories for a change of pace. Given my recent forays into establishment fiction and a futile search for modern pulp, a little Vance is just what the literary doctor ordered.
So it is with great pleasure that I open the floor for discussions about The Dragon Masters. If you want to join in the read-along, pick up a copy today, we'll be here all month.