Moorcock's Hawkmoon quartet

Bick

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I think Moorcock produced the books in about about a week apeice.
And yet they’re not bad I think? He’s such a natural talent, you do wonder what he might have written if he’d spent a few months on them.
 

hitmouse

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And yet they’re not bad I think? He’s such a natural talent, you do wonder what he might have written if he’d spent a few months on them.
I really like them. Distinctive Moorcockean fantasy. Quite slight compared to some of his other efforts. I think he rather dismissed them as something churned out to pay the mortgage.
 

Vince W

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I raced through all the Moorcock I could get my hands on at one point. Wonderful stuff.
 

Toby Frost

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I’ve never got on with Moorcock. I’ve waded through Count Brass, the Cornelius books and Gloriana, and I found them all more “difficult” than they deserved to be (although Gloriana is a homage to Peake, so I suppose it would be rather verbose). There’s a cumbersome, wordy feel to his prose that makes it feel like hard work, as if I was reading Dickens. Strangely, I think the best writing of his that I’ve read is the essay “Epic Pooh”, with which I disagree. Maybe the Elric books are different, but I don’t feel inclined to find out.
 

Simbelmynë

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There’s a cumbersome, wordy feel to his prose that makes it feel like hard work, as if I was reading Dickens.
Moorcock has stated that he enjoys Victorian and Edwardian fiction, and even though Hawkmoon is in the pulp fantasy style, and so isn’t deliberately given the literary voice of that era - as in his Warlord of the Air or City in the Autumn Stars - his penchant for drawing from 19th and early 20th century styles of prose could be what you’re picking up on in the books you’ve read.

I like this about Moorcock, when I’m
in the right frame of mind, but Hawkmoon reads like typical fast paced, ruthless pulp for me, with an added element of the hypnotic in his description of places, magic and otherworldly technology.

If you ever feel like giving him another try, Hawkmoon and the Elric stories are old school classics I’d recommend to anyone at all interested in fantasy.

I’m not sure how I feel about seeing Hawkmoon on screen though. I’m a bit of a stickler for being precious about a world that, for me, has so far existed only in my mind, and I don’t know how I feel about loosing that kind of ownership. I can’t even remember what Legolas looked like for me before he acquired Orlando Bloom’s puppy dog eyes. Not that I didn’t love the films, but i’m now older, fussier, and possibly a bit sentimental.
 

BAYLOR

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Moorcock has stated that he enjoys Victorian and Edwardian fiction, and even though Hawkmoon is in the pulp fantasy style, and so isn’t deliberately given the literary voice of that era - as in his Warlord of the Air or City in the Autumn Stars - his penchant for drawing from 19th and early 20th century styles of prose could be what you’re picking up on in the books you’ve read.

I like this about Moorcock, when I’m
in the right frame of mind, but Hawkmoon reads like typical fast paced, ruthless pulp for me, with an added element of the hypnotic in his description of places, magic and otherworldly technology.

If you ever feel like giving him another try, Hawkmoon and the Elric stories are old school classics I’d recommend to anyone at all interested in fantasy.

I’m not sure how I feel about seeing Hawkmoon on screen though. I’m a bit of a stickler for being precious about a world that, for me, has so far existed only in my mind, and I don’t know how I feel about loosing that kind of ownership. I can’t even remember what Legolas looked like for me before he acquired Orlando Bloom’s puppy dog eyes. Not that I didn’t love the films, but i’m now older, fussier, and possibly a bit sentimental.
Also the Corum series is quite good.
 

BAYLOR

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Yes, and in the same vein as Hawkmoon.
They were among the first books I read by him . :)

It would be nice if Michael Moorcock went back writing these kinds of books. but that's not likely happening .:confused:
 
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Simbelmynë

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They were among the first books I read by him . :)

It would be nice if Michael Moorcock went back writing these kinds of books. but that's not likely happening .:confused:
I don’t think I’ve read anything later than Revenge of the Rose (90’s?), so I’m unsure what his later output is like. I must confess that I haven’t yet gotten round to reading his more literary fiction - only the stuff that falls within his Eternal Champion multiverse - but what I’ve heard about sounds interesting.
 

HareBrain

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I’m unsure what his later output is like. I must confess that I haven’t yet gotten round to reading his more literary fiction - only the stuff that falls within his Eternal Champion multiverse - but what I’ve heard about sounds interesting.
I read The Whispering Swarm when it came out (it feels like about three years ago, which means it was probably back in 1786 or something). I really liked the autobiographical element, but the fantasy stuff was really weak, in my opinion. But (also in my opinion) I don't think his fantasy was ever as good as it should have been. The idea/image of Elric is much more exciting than the actual stories he featured in.
 

Simbelmynë

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I know what you mean about Elric, but I think it comes down to taste. If enigmatic heroes and dark, weird settings, over plot twists or deeper characters, are what you’re after then Moorcock’s fantasy might be enough. There have been times for me when it’s not enough, and others where I really have a hankering for that kind of flavour. The individual novels are very short too, especially in comparison to modern epic fantasy, and, in the case of Hawkmoon, there is something appealing about getting a complete epic in less pages than half a single volume of A Song of Ice and Fire.

—————

MM has described himself as a “bad writer with big ideas”! Harsh, and I disagree that he’s a bad writer, but he obviously recognises his own fallibility.
 
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BAYLOR

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I don’t think I’ve read anything later than Revenge of the Rose (90’s?), so I’m unsure what his later output is like. I must confess that I haven’t yet gotten round to reading his more literary fiction - only the stuff that falls within his Eternal Champion multiverse - but what I’ve heard about sounds interesting.
I read Revenge of the Rose and thought it quite good. :cool:
 

BAYLOR

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I know what you mean about Elric, but I think it comes down to taste. If enigmatic heroes and dark, weird settings, over plot twists or deeper characters, are what you’re after then Moorcock’s fantasy might be enough. There have been times for me when it’s not enough, and others where I really have a hankering for that kind of flavour. The individual novels are very short too, especially in comparison to modern epic fantasy, and, in the case of Hawkmoon, there is something appealing about getting a complete epic in less pages than half a single volume of A Song of Ice and Fire.

—————

MM has described himself as a “bad writer with big ideas”! Harsh, and I disagree that he’s a bad writer, but he obviously recognises his own fallibility.

The Dorian Hawkmoon series was alot of fun read . Its got everything you want in a good fantasy series . I blazed right though that series in less then a week . II liked it when he met up with the Elric and Erekose sn Corum and I like that each series we saw the meeting from a different point of view . Absolutely marvelous stuff !

In fantasy and science fiction. Michalke Moorcock is one the giants !
 

BAYLOR

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I think Moorcock produced the books in about about a week apeice.
I read somewhere where he wrote the Kane of Mars trilogy in something like 3 days? Unfortunately, It's not one of his best works.
 

Nozzle Velocity

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I read somewhere where he wrote the Kane of Mars trilogy in something like 3 days? Unfortunately, It's not one of his best works.
It was an homage to ERB, written largely in that style, so it was never going to be his best - although I've read better ERB pastiches. He claims he knocked out those early fantasy and sword & sorcery novels (Hawkmoon, Elric, etc.) quickly because he spent weeks working them out in his head beforehand. That's a unique way to work, but I tend to believe him. He remembers an amazing amount of detail about those books that he supposedly never read afterward. That would explain it.
 

hitmouse

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I can’t even remember what Legolas looked like for me before he acquired Orlando Bloom’s puppy dog eyes. Not that I didn’t love the films, but i’m now older, fussier, and possibly a bit sentimental.
I can help here. He looked as shown in the classic Jimmy Cauty poster that everyone had on their bedroom walls in the 1970s, next to the Rodney Matthews Tanelorn poster.

50759
50760
 

Simbelmynë

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I can help here. He looked as shown in the classic Jimmy Cauty poster that everyone had on their bedroom walls in the 1970s, next to the Rodney Matthews Tanelorn poster.

View attachment 50759View attachment 50760
Excellent artwork, not sure I’ve seen the second one before.

But being born in the 80’s I think he might have looked more like a warhammer figure, or something like the 90’s era wood elf illustrations from the rulebooks. I just can’t conjure up the exact image I had. It’s a piecemeal gripe I know, but you’re right, the fantasy art, and also films, games or tv, from whichever era you grew up in would always shape the mental perception of the books you read. So I guess it was never exclusively conjured up by my own imagination anyway.
 

BAYLOR

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It was an homage to ERB, written largely in that style, so it was never going to be his best - although I've read better ERB pastiches. He claims he knocked out those early fantasy and sword & sorcery novels (Hawkmoon, Elric, etc.) quickly because he spent weeks working them out in his head beforehand. That's a unique way to work, but I tend to believe him. He remembers an amazing amount of detail about those books that he supposedly never read afterward. That would explain it.
The Sojan stories were also a homage to ERB.
 
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