The beauty of being surrounded by lots of books, especially ones that you love, is that when a newer book in a series prompts you to go exploring, everything you need is right at hand. While it was sad to read Hastur Lord, knowing that it had been Bradley’s last book, it was fun to have it remind me of stories and twists from her Darkover collection that I barely remembered. When that happens, I tend to embark on massive rereading binges in between my other reading material. Hastur Lord set off the avalanche that will no doubt weave through my summer and well beyond the Cannonball Read #4 challenge.
Darkover Landfall was not the first book about this legendary world that Marion Zimmer Bradley wrote, but it is the first one in the series if you read it chronologically to the planet. My copy is an old and treasured part of my collection with its tiny 6 to 8 point type and densely packed pages. We waste a lot of paper and bookshelf space nowadays as less words get printed in much larger type on the pages to make them look more impressive. No wonder book costs have jumped!
Darkover Landfall begins with the crash of a Terran vessel on an unknown planet after being thrown off course during a severe storm. While the ship and its colonists were already on their way to settle another world, it was one that had already been carefully explored, terraformed and planned out by crew in anticipation of their arrival. Stranded on a different, uncharted and unexplored world, the survivors cope with all of the wonders and dangers that this new world holds, not knowing that a complex and incredible civilization will spring from their small numbers to establish a foothold on this planet with a purple sky and red sun.
What a delight to reread this classic Science-Fiction tale. I am missing StormQueen from my collection, having lent it out to someone who never returned my copy, so I will have to move on to Hawkmistress next…
Paperback format, 160 pages, published in 1972 by DAW Books. (Cover price 95 cents)