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Ritter- Geist. (7519 478). Die Saga vom magischen Land Xanth. ( Fantasy).

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Jordan was a ghost in Castle Roogna now. Although once he had been the most valorus of knights--that is, until he was betrayed by two wily magicians and the woman he loves. Now, if he only can remember how he was killed, he'll be able to reassemble his body. And he is getting impatient....


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Jordan was a ghost in Castle Roogna now. Although once he had been the most valorus of knights--that is, until he was betrayed by two wily magicians and the woman he loves. Now, if he only can remember how he was killed, he'll be able to reassemble his body. And he is getting impatient....

30 review for Ritter- Geist. (7519 478). Die Saga vom magischen Land Xanth. ( Fantasy).

  1. 4 out of 5

    J Austill

    This book is likely the best of the Xanth novels, in my opinion, as it spends the most time in that position. Though, depending on day, I've been known to favour A Spell for Chameleon. A lot of series are difficult to decide a reading order for. That isn't true of Xanth as the published order IS the chronological order. That couldn't be more apparent with Crewel Lye. This book answers a question which many readers posed after reading Book 3, Castle Roogna. In that book, the plot centers around This book is likely the best of the Xanth novels, in my opinion, as it spends the most time in that position. Though, depending on day, I've been known to favour A Spell for Chameleon. A lot of series are difficult to decide a reading order for. That isn't true of Xanth as the published order IS the chronological order. That couldn't be more apparent with Crewel Lye. This book answers a question which many readers posed after reading Book 3, Castle Roogna. In that book, the plot centers around Dor using magic to bring Millie the Ghost back to life. But there are other ghosts of Castle Roogna which nobody has bothered to bring back to life. Apparently the reason why is that nobody cared to bother. But here, a couple of the Xanth kids decide to employ magic to bring back Jordan, and while they are waiting for the magic to work he tells them the story of his life. This is why the book occurs between books 7 and 9 when most of the plot place it well before book 1. Although I commended Book 5 for changing up the formula by having a non-human protagonist, I am also going to commend book 8, here, of having the typical fantasy hero. This is because, like in Book 1 with Bink, Jordan is exactly what you would expect of a fantasy hero - strong, handsome, charismatic. He'd be the captain of the football team in high school, yet he is a misfit in Xanth. Unlike standard sword swinging fantasy heroes, Jordan always gets his ass handed to him. This is because, although he is a dashing hero in every sense, he has a purely defensive magical talent. Like Wolverine in the X-men comics, his talent is to heal. As such, he is constantly being defeated and even killed, but then heals from it - waking up a while later rather embarrassed. Which begs the question which is the central mystery of this tale. How is it that the man who can't be killed is a ghost? As well as who did it and why? The answers to those questions as well as the romance plot (or rather anti-romance plot?) make this the best of the Xanth novels.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ryan

    Crewel Lye: A Caustic Yarn in another Xanth book by Piers Anthony. In it a young girl named Ivy helps one of the ghosts haunting her castle to clean up the magic tapestry that shows the history of the world. This helps the ghost, Jordan the Barbarian, remember his own story, and the book is primarily the retelling of his adventure. I just recently finished reading the novel that comes before this one, Dragon on a Pedestal, and I quite enjoyed that one. This book has an interesting premise, but I Crewel Lye: A Caustic Yarn in another Xanth book by Piers Anthony. In it a young girl named Ivy helps one of the ghosts haunting her castle to clean up the magic tapestry that shows the history of the world. This helps the ghost, Jordan the Barbarian, remember his own story, and the book is primarily the retelling of his adventure. I just recently finished reading the novel that comes before this one, Dragon on a Pedestal, and I quite enjoyed that one. This book has an interesting premise, but I have to admit, I had a hard time getting past Anthony’s casual misogyny in this one. There are a lot of good things to be said about these, the world of Xanth, and Anthony’s writing style. They are imaginative and they can be charming. They are filled with interesting, creative renditions of fantasy creatures, with centaurs, harpies, goblins, gnomes, dragons, ogres, as well as really inspired concepts for spells and magical talents, without worrying about getting too serious about all the ramifications. They feel like fantasy in an older sense, like these are stories you’d sit around and tell to friends, but they’re well structured. There is even something to be said about some of the cute concepts around sex in the world of Xanth, like how parents “signal” the stork to deliver babies, but those details are part of the “Adult Conspiracy” which cannot be divulged to children. Jordan’s magic talent is that he can heal after almost any injury, rather like Wolverine from the Marvel comics universe. He makes a formidable adventurer, taming the mighty ghost horse Pook as a steed, and embarking on a quest for the wizards Yin and Yang to determine which of them would become the next king of Xath. He finds himself the subject of a betrayal at the hands of a woman. He becomes fixed on this, and it is the central pun of the book; his “Cruel Lie.” A nice inversion to this is that he, himself, lied to the woman he loved in his home village in order to set out adventuring, and it only got him killed. That’s a wonderful thing about this book – it takes the entire book for Jordan to eventually realize the cruel lie was actually his own. The problem I keep running into is a constant stream of conversation that Anthony has through the main characters about the nature of men vs women, a constant fixation on physical attributes of female characters and creatures, and some darker subtexts about submission, deception, jealously, and “female logic.” At the same time, there are moments when it seems like Anthony might be learning something about women, but those moments get buried under a lot of other problematic stuff. I think it’s wonderful that sex is such a part of Xanth, because its one of those topics people can, and should, have a lot of fun with. That’s what Xanth is – it’s supposed to be light and fun. At the same time, the directions taken by those characters in sexual situations are often not positive ones, and I think that’s a shame. In Dragon on a Pedestal there was certainly some of that, but because the focus was primarily on the little girl Ivy, there was less (but still some) fixation with gender roles. In this story, Jordan the Barbarian is the main character, and there is a constant dialogue about the nature of women, sexual or erotic encounters, and so on. It gets to be a bit much, and I guess I’m disappointed because I like so much else about the book. My problem isn’t that the characters are perverts, not is it that there is so much sex, sexual encounters, erotic thoughts, or anything like that. It’s the stuff that gets stated like it’s fact about men and women, and how women perceive the world and are perceived by it. You can also have characters with varying viewpoints of their own, and those viewpoints don’t have to be the authors. I suppose I see enough of the same kinds of strains of troublesome lines of reasoning spread across multiple character’s internal dialogues that it seems more like the author’s line of reasoning. Men and women go through puberty and deal with a lot of sexually awkward stuff, and when the sexual content of Xanth is good or interesting, I’m reminded of some of my own puberty filled with sexual fantasies and awkward experiences. Again, there is good stuff in Xanth. There is also a lot of problematic stuff. To be honest, I thought Grundy goes through a good character arc here, but it takes a couple of books to appreciate. Grundy is a character who doesn’t consider himself brave because he’s afraid all the time, and this book is an opportunity to remind the reader that doing the right thing is heroic, no matter on what scale. Grundy certainly performs in this book like a classical hero suffering to complete his quest, but he never considers himself brave or noble because he’s scared or tempted all the time. Unfortunately, the woman he falls in love with, Rapunzel, is a half-elf maiden who, to all appearances, loves him because he is the first male she ever met. Furthermore, she can be any size, so she is comfortable being the same size as him. She feels a lot like a “hero’s reward” kind of female character, and I think that’s unfortunate. There continue to be a lot of pun-based magic concepts in this book I find intriguing, especially the magically-powerful swarm of B’s from the B-Have, who inflict their victims with B-related magical infections like B-hind, B-lieve, and B-hold. I also love the sea monster who tells the story about how humans in Mundanea, the name for our world on Earth, misunderstand him as having an appetite for damsels in distress when, in fact, he always tries to rescue them. Uncomplimentary views on women continue to be a problem in these books, and they manifest themselves… consistently. The best parts of this book occur when either characters are being coy with each other or when sexual attraction is not part of the narrative at all. The writing of Xanth is charming, and I find myself continuing to be pulled into these books and find myself marveling at the seemingly simplicity of some of the fun concepts fleshed out into magical paradigms. It’s just something an aware reader needs to be aware of, and something an aware reader can’t help but notice.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Kenny Mitchell

    A happy ending to a cruel lie. One of my favs!! Still puts a smile on my face after all these years! Highly recommend! You won't be disappointed!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Joan

    This was another fun Xanth story. This time the focus is on Jordan the Ghost. This isn't one of his best but still plenty of fun.

  5. 4 out of 5

    M.J. Lau

    Perhaps my favorite Xanth book -- funny, clever, and suspenseful!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    4 Stars Crewel Lye is the eighth book in the Xanth series by Piers Anthony. Jordan had once been a valiant knight- but now wanders the castle Roogna in his ghost form. He suffered a serious blow when he was betrayed in the worst possible way. Now he just needs to remember exactly what happened, if he's got any chance of figuring things out. The Xanth Series is quite a really long series that has spanned many decades. I remember reading the first few books back in the very early 1980’s and was 4 Stars Crewel Lye is the eighth book in the Xanth series by Piers Anthony. Jordan had once been a valiant knight- but now wanders the castle Roogna in his ghost form. He suffered a serious blow when he was betrayed in the worst possible way. Now he just needs to remember exactly what happened, if he's got any chance of figuring things out. The Xanth Series is quite a really long series that has spanned many decades. I remember reading the first few books back in the very early 1980’s and was totally captivated by the epic fantasy that unfolded before my eyes. I collected all the books as each new one was released and have revisited them a few times over the years. Recently I had been reorganising my bookshelves, because eight book cases have become insufficient to house all my books (#bookwhoredilemma)- and it came to the point where I was going to have to get rid of some of my older books/series in order to make way for new favourites. I looked at all the larger/longer series first and this is one of the larger series that I have, it came under scrutiny. I decided to reread all the books I was considering getting rid of first- before making a final decision. I can honestly say that although I these books didn’t blow me away as they once did- I still really enjoyed all the adventure, magic, swords & sorcery like epic fantasy that Mr. Anthony is renowned for. He has imbued his stories with plenty of humour, a playfulness, lots of fun, action, some history, conspiracies, secrets, surprising developments, and much, much more. We meet so many varied and original characters along the way- the books are full of wonderful fictional beasts and paranormal creatures/beasts. From centaurs, to demons, dragons, fauns, gargoyles, goblins, golems, harpies, merfolk, elves, nymphs, ogres, zombies, and curse fiends- and a few more I am sure I have missed. The world of Xanth is wonderfully rich and vividly descriptive. It is really well written and is so easy to imagine, it came to life before my eyes. Each ‘person’ in Xanth is born with their own unique magical ability, which is called a ‘talent’. We follow along on many epic adventures and explore the world as the story unfolds. I have many fond memories of reading this book/series- and in the end I can’t cull any of my collection. So I decided to just purchase a couple of extra bookcases instead. #myprecious A series worth exploring- especially for any epic fantasy lover who loves some fun and humour served with their adventure. Thank you, Mr. Anthony!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Athimar

    I'm happy to report that Crewel Lye is much improved over the previous book in the series, Dragon on a Pedestal. It is, once again, loaded with pun after pun, but given the influence of his editors - as is evident from the author's notes following the novel - he spaced them out much better. With the exception of a few chapters to the beginning and end of the novel, the main character of this story is Jordan the ghost... long before he became a ghost. After Princess Ivy cleans the tapestry of I'm happy to report that Crewel Lye is much improved over the previous book in the series, Dragon on a Pedestal. It is, once again, loaded with pun after pun, but given the influence of his editors - as is evident from the author's notes following the novel - he spaced them out much better. With the exception of a few chapters to the beginning and end of the novel, the main character of this story is Jordan the ghost... long before he became a ghost. After Princess Ivy cleans the tapestry of history hanging in Castle Roogna with some crewel lye, Jordan describes for her his past as the two of them watch it unfold. Jordan's character is a hoot. He continually refers to himself as this backward barbarian who isn't altogether bright while at the same time utilizing a vocabulary that would put to shame the greatest of English professors at many a college. It is an irony utilized through the novel yet never called out - making it perfect! I mean... It's obvious that this was Mr. Anthony's intent from the start - but if he referred to the fact even once, it would be ruined. And he didn't ruin it. Also introduced in this novel is the adult conspiracy. Any time a child character, from this point on, tries to understand how parents summon the stork to leave a baby under a cabbage leave in their gardens, he or she becomes stymied. Considering how breeding was openly discussed in from of Princess Ivy all last novel, this change is significant - and makes for exceptional fun throughout the rest of the series. This shows that, by this novel, Mr. Anthony was fully bought into continuing with Xanth in a new, long term way - likely, at first, at the request of his agent and his fans. Though he was setting up future novels even back in Dragon, it's obvious that he has a plan for several future novels in the series from the hints he drops in this one. I award Crewel Lye 4 out of 5 stars. Thanks for the novel Piers!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Bil

    I came across this book when I was 9 or 10 years old, I don't remember how exactly, but it made a permanent stamp on my young brain. It was the first "big" book I had ever read, and I distinctly remember sitting in the window seat of my bedroom as I finished it, and then being rewarded with a trip to Jenny's Ice Cream for making it to the end. I even named my hamsters after characters in this book. I think I read about 20 more Piers Anthony books after this one, and once I wrote him a letter I came across this book when I was 9 or 10 years old, I don't remember how exactly, but it made a permanent stamp on my young brain. It was the first "big" book I had ever read, and I distinctly remember sitting in the window seat of my bedroom as I finished it, and then being rewarded with a trip to Jenny's Ice Cream for making it to the end. I even named my hamsters after characters in this book. I think I read about 20 more Piers Anthony books after this one, and once I wrote him a letter which he graciously responded to. I probably should have left all those memories right there in the gauzy haze of childhood, because re-reading this novel on a whim at age 39 made me realize how terrible the writing is in this book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    D.A. Cairns

    I haven't read any other Xanth novels, but I am a Piers Anthony fan, especially of his fantasy novels. Crewel Lye is a parody and a really clever and funny one. Littered with sharp, snappy social commentary and outrageously bad puns it is essentially a story of a hero whose special talent is the ability to heal himself even from death who gets tangled up in a deceptive quest involving a half demon seductress and a wicked magician who wants to be king. The story is typical fantasy fare but the I haven't read any other Xanth novels, but I am a Piers Anthony fan, especially of his fantasy novels. Crewel Lye is a parody and a really clever and funny one. Littered with sharp, snappy social commentary and outrageously bad puns it is essentially a story of a hero whose special talent is the ability to heal himself even from death who gets tangled up in a deceptive quest involving a half demon seductress and a wicked magician who wants to be king. The story is typical fantasy fare but the satire and humour is brilliant and sets Crewel Lye apart from your run of the mill of the mill fantasy novel. Wonderful writing. Packed with action, intrigue, humour and unexpected twists. I loved it.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kate H

    The Xanth books by Piers Anthony were some of the first SciFi/Fantasy books I ever read. I love puns so I have always enjoyed them. Upon re-reading them I can see that they have some weaknesses but overall they stand the test of time. They are a fun and fast read that keeps me amused without any deep thinking required.

  11. 5 out of 5

    MR MICHAEL

    The story of a barbarian with a task to complete, despite magical curses as he travels across Xanth with a woman who is half demon, a woman who falls in love with him and who betrays and kills him. But the story of course has a happy ending.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    One of my favourites among the Xanth novels: a good story, well told, and not so many passages where the author tries to squeeze in as many of the puns sent in by fans as possible. A most satisfactory ending, too.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    Better than some of the others. Not so formula.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Robynn

    I like this one. Gory.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Chris

    I'm a completionist, but I don't know if I can make it through the whole series.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Rick

    This was another pun-filled adventure in Xanth.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Annette McIntyre

    Jordan is a barbarian and is wandering the depths of Xanth when he finds Pook the ghost horse. This book follows Jordan as he finds the love of his life.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Maha

    I think i really enjoyed this one. Although they are all quite similar, I think I enjoyed this one more than the others I've read so far.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ashleigh

    Good read. Interesting story. Not my favorite Xanth novel but certainly not the worse.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Charlie Devlin

    A pretty good story from a side character that provides further history to the world of Xanth.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tryniti Thresher

    Piers Anthony, that punny, perverted, clever little bugger is my favorite fantasy author. All of his works intertwine and make for a hell of a complex world and largest set of characters - all of whom you can't help but adore. I've read this one a few times, and it's one of my top three favorites of the Xanth novels.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Swankivy

    Ah, punny titles. I wonder if he thinks of the titles first and then writes a book to match? Seems like it. This book features Princess Ivy again. I like Princess Ivy. Partly because she's a female character whose talent isn't somehow related to sex or appearance, thanks. (Though that would have been creepy since her first appearance as a protagonist was at three years old.) But she is mostly not the focus of this one; she watches the story of Jordan the Barbarian through a magic tapestry. I kinda Ah, punny titles. I wonder if he thinks of the titles first and then writes a book to match? Seems like it. This book features Princess Ivy again. I like Princess Ivy. Partly because she's a female character whose talent isn't somehow related to sex or appearance, thanks. (Though that would have been creepy since her first appearance as a protagonist was at three years old.) But she is mostly not the focus of this one; she watches the story of Jordan the Barbarian through a magic tapestry. I kinda liked that the narration style was a little different here--Anthony rendered much of it in first person. Overall one of the concepts bugged me--ghosts only exist in Xanth if they have unresolved issues to tie up, and it seems like at SOME point within the last four hundred years somebody might have asked this poor Jordan fellow what they could do to help him, right? It takes a curious five-year-old to find out what's keeping Jordan the Ghost from being released from ghosthood. In a flashback, we hear all about Jordan's unfortunate life: Jordan's talent of being able to heal from any injury allowed Anthony to write about him getting hacked apart a LOT, which was really disgusting--don't read this if you're squeamish. Jordan went on a quest to escort a girl to her marriage; Jordan found out the girl didn't WANT to be married to her intended (and she expressed this by trying to kill Jordan); Jordan rebounded from this only to fall in love with the girl. (That's what girls are for in fantasy. Unless they're ugly.) Anyway, old Threnody is eventually shown to supposedly betray Jordan by burying all the pieces of his body too far apart from each other for him to regenerate. That's what has him hanging around. But of course little Princess Ivy hears the story and figures out how to help. Don't you wish you had a precocious five-year-old on the solving team for every four-hundred-year-old mystery? But here's something about the book that really bothered me. At one point, because of an exchange spell, Jordan the Barbarian ends up accidentally switching bodies with Threnody. Two big problems popped up for me because of it. One: Jordan gets a taste of being a hot woman. And Piers Anthony basically writes a lot of the feminine experience as if it automatically comes with the body. For instance, at one point he gets a compliment and he's mentally pissed off about it, but his body just can't help but flush with "feminine" pleasure. So chicks are hard-wired to physically react in appreciation of compliments? Okay, Piers. No. And I know as a Barbarian he's sort of supposed to be something of a lout, but . . . he only starts feeling sort of sympathetic to Threnody's situation--where she's being forced to marry against her will--when he's worried it might be him? 'Kay. Anthony has Jordan narrating how women are forced to take "mincing" steps because their pelvises aren't formed correctly for "full-size" steps, and how the weak arms and "ungainly" shape of a woman--which is, of course (and I quote) a "more-decorative-than-functional body"--was surely such a liability that it was "no wonder women tended to be jealous of men!" Really? REALLY? The rest of Jordan's time in Threnody's body is peppered with references to him being forced to use--and I quote--"subversive wiles" like batting eyelashes, "feminine touch," singing, and false praise to trick men. Because women have no other defenses. Yep. I understand that Jordan is a Barbarian and he is supposed to be kind of a lunkhead, and he might very well think some of these things about the female form when forced to live in it, but considering the way women are described and treated in the rest of this series before and after this book, I see no evidence that this is an isolated attitude. Two: The exchanged consciousnesses also result in exchanged magical powers. Threnody's power is to transform any part of her body or her whole body however she wants, but the transformation takes exactly one full hour. And while Jordan is in her body, HE figures out how to use her talent so it won't take a full hour; for instance, if he wants his arm to become four feet long, he can AIM for it to become multiple times that length, but just stop when it gets to his desired length. Threnody, despite a lifetime of using her talent, just plain never thought of that. It seems ludicrous, honestly. Especially since magical talents are discovered, not handed down written out with their limitations spelled out. Surely she, or someone else around her, might have figured this out before someone else had to steal her body to teach it to her.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Julie Decker

    Princess Ivy is about to solve a four-hundred-year-old mystery: Why can't Jordan move on from ghosthood? We then see, from Jordan's perspective, how he came to be unable to properly die. As a Barbarian, with the magical talent of healing from any injury, he sets forth to escort the betrothed Threnody to her intended, only to find she does not want to be married and will do anything to escape that fate. But after these two switch bodies, they are forced to work together against the unwanted Princess Ivy is about to solve a four-hundred-year-old mystery: Why can't Jordan move on from ghosthood? We then see, from Jordan's perspective, how he came to be unable to properly die. As a Barbarian, with the magical talent of healing from any injury, he sets forth to escort the betrothed Threnody to her intended, only to find she does not want to be married and will do anything to escape that fate. But after these two switch bodies, they are forced to work together against the unwanted marriage and save themselves and each other. This book featured multiple instances of things I hate reading: gratuitous violence and misrepresentation of women. The violence is maybe expected as Jordan's a barbarian and he can survive getting violently attacked, so he gets violently attacked a lot. But what's worse is Threnody. Not only did Jordan have to teach her to use her powers more effectively even though she was the one who'd lived with them her whole life, but when he took over her body because of a magical switch, there were loads of offensive representations. Jordan, in a woman's body, finds that her body is not good for anything because it was clearly created for attracting men, not actually doing anything useful (and he spends a lot of his narration commenting on how the female body is handicapped by design flaws since it is not really built for hard stuff like walking--all that bothersome hip gyration, you know). He blushes and feels flattered when he gets sexually harassed, even though he doesn't want to react that way. (Wow, you sure nailed women, Anthony! It's a biological aspect of our being that we can't help but be flattered at compliments!) And he knowingly uses his borrowed body to bamboozle and trick men, with the language in the book repeatedly assigning the lying, the trickery, and the manipulation to "feminine" abilities that just come naturally to a woman. As if that wasn't enough, there are several places where Jordan in Threnody's body expresses in his mental narration that the inconveniences of being female have taught him why women are always so jealous of guys. I can definitely say that without the context of the rest of the series making it clear that women are ornamental, manipulative temptresses most of the time, I might have attributed this extremely uncharitable interpretation to Jordan just being clueless and misogynistic, but . . . I'm pretty sure this is not the character's flaws.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Aiden Ponce

    _Crewel Lye_by_Piers Anthony_ Book Report #3 by Aiden Ponce Jordan was a ghost in Castle Roogna now, spending his time with little five-year-old Ivy and watching his own past unfold on the magic tapestry. This is the story of Jordan’s life in Crewel Lye. He is a ghost in the castle Roogna. It tells the story of when he was alive. He was a knight on a quest for the king. He gets lied to by the two magicians Yin and Yang, Also by Threnody the king’s daughter. He falls in love with her. She betrays _Crewel Lye_by_Piers Anthony_ Book Report #3 by Aiden Ponce Jordan was a ghost in Castle Roogna now, spending his time with little five-year-old Ivy and watching his own past unfold on the magic tapestry. This is the story of Jordan’s life in Crewel Lye. He is a ghost in the castle Roogna. It tells the story of when he was alive. He was a knight on a quest for the king. He gets lied to by the two magicians Yin and Yang, Also by Threnody the king’s daughter. He falls in love with her. She betrays him. She kills him and scatters in remains in different spots. His magic was the ability to heal himself. He could not heal if his body parts were separated. Being dead wasn't so bad. Jordan met and fell in love with Renee, a female ghost. He forgets most of his living life. Then he started watching the magic tapestry with Ivy and started remembering his past. His quest was to bring back an object to the king. He didn't know what just that the compass would show him. Magician Yins spells were to help him. Yangs were to stop him. If he got the object and brought it back then Yin would be king. If he failed then Yang would be king. The winner would also get to marry the king’s daughter. Threnody did turns out to be what he seeks. She is also the king’s daughter. She doesn't want to come back to the castle or marry one of the magicians. She fights Jorden all the way. There is a curse on her, if she returns to the castle it will fall. He had been betrayed with a cruel lie by two wily magicians and the women he loved. He had been killed at the end, and his bones had been scattered. Now he could not even remember where they had been buried. That was important, because Jordan's talent had been to recover form almost any injury, provided enough of his body could be assembled to grow together again. But all that had been four hundred years before. Nobody who was alive today knew or cared where his bones might be. It was hardly the proper ending for a gallant adventure!

  25. 4 out of 5

    David Sarkies

    Why did I keep reading these books? 30 December 2011 I guess I might be getting to a point where I am confusing the Goodreads Database. By putting in all of the Xanth books the algorithim is probably starting to think that I read a lot of pre-teen fantasy novels. While it is true that I have done so in the past, it is not necessarily something that I am doing at the moment. Okay, I do have a number of such books on my self which I will get around to reading someday (which includes Game of Why did I keep reading these books? 30 December 2011 I guess I might be getting to a point where I am confusing the Goodreads Database. By putting in all of the Xanth books the algorithim is probably starting to think that I read a lot of pre-teen fantasy novels. While it is true that I have done so in the past, it is not necessarily something that I am doing at the moment. Okay, I do have a number of such books on my self which I will get around to reading someday (which includes Game of Thrones, but that is hardly a pre-teen fantasy novel). I guess the other thing is that I keep on giving the Xanth novels one and two stars, which suggests that I did not like them, yet I am writing up comments on the thirteen that I have read, so I suspect that this suggests that I may be some sort of sucker for punishment. Most normal people who give such books such low scores are unlikely to continue reading the series. Don't get me wrong, when I was reading the Xanth novels I did enjoy them, but as times have changed, and I have expanded my reading scope, my interest in pre-teen fantasy has diminished. Anyway, this book is slightly different. It stars Ivy, the hero of the previous book, and it is set entirely in Castle Roogna. She is talking to a ghost and wanting to know his story, and she uses the magic tapestry to actually watch the story unfold, in much the same way that we watch television. Now, there is mention of the Adult Conspiracy in this book, and while this rings a bell, it is not clear as to what it is - yet. People have suggested that there are further hints as to where he is going with the series, and it is interesting how he does it. Anthony really likes using puns, and this is something that is constant throughout the series. However, there does get to a point where we simply stop reading the series because it has stalled and our interests are directed elsewhere. Unfortunately for me, it wasn't with this book.

  26. 5 out of 5

    John

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I was extremely pleased with this book. There was an entertaining sense of adventure that kept me turning pages wanting to see what happens next. It seemed that my reading speed increased to the point where it was almost like watching a movie in my brain. This book returned me to the sense of joy I felt while reading earlier books in the series. Just as the third book in the series, "Castle Roogna", brought us back to an earlier time, so too does "Crewel Lye", though at a more recent time. It I was extremely pleased with this book. There was an entertaining sense of adventure that kept me turning pages wanting to see what happens next. It seemed that my reading speed increased to the point where it was almost like watching a movie in my brain. This book returned me to the sense of joy I felt while reading earlier books in the series. Just as the third book in the series, "Castle Roogna", brought us back to an earlier time, so too does "Crewel Lye", though at a more recent time. It serves well to broaden the world of Xanth as one more historical chapter. The story also adds a little more to the "current" state of Xanth, as Jordan's story is book-ended with chapters containing appearances of better-known characters such as the Good Magician Humphrey, Princess Ivy, and the Gap Dragon. Even though the premise was a based on a cruel lie, the story is wrapped up neatly with a happy ending, but not too neatly. There remain a few hints at future stories, regarding Ivy's baby brother Dolph, the disappearance of a recurring character, and the first mention of the Adult Conspiracy. On a side note, I was disappointed to learn that the true first chapter is apparently missing! The author explains in his note, but I would have appreciated the chapter being added some day... Is a certain Muse to blame? :) Overall it was a well-written story, as I have come to expect from this author. I always appreciate how we can understand what the characters are thinking and feeling, which I think adds to the richness of these stories. I am looking forward to the next entry in the series...

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sarah J

    Xanth is a fantasy novel that is based almost entirely on wordplay, specifically puns. The series occupies a strange space between silly and weird. Anthony has some odd opinions on themes, such as sex, racism, prejudice, growing up, and the use of magic in everyday life. The writing vacillates between heavy-handed condescending to extended analysis of magic, science, and the application of the rules of Xanth. Some love it, some hate it; I personally thought it was a strange read but harmless, Xanth is a fantasy novel that is based almost entirely on wordplay, specifically puns. The series occupies a strange space between silly and weird. Anthony has some odd opinions on themes, such as sex, racism, prejudice, growing up, and the use of magic in everyday life. The writing vacillates between heavy-handed condescending to extended analysis of magic, science, and the application of the rules of Xanth. Some love it, some hate it; I personally thought it was a strange read but harmless, although I doubt I'll read each book twice. One thing about Anthony, he has a very complicated history and genealogy of Xanth and its characters and you have to appreciate how he always finds ways to connect them from book to book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Don LaFountaine

    This was an average Xanth novel, though it was an easy and enjoyable read. Book 8 of the series finds Princess Ivy board because she has been grounded at Castle Roogna. (Though of course, it was not her fault.) On top of that indignity, her parents had the audacity to go out and find a baby brother - Dolph - under a cabbage leaf. So, in desperation, she starts to watch the tapestry on the wall. She is soon joined by the ghost Jordan. Ivy becomes very excited as Jordan wants to tell her his tale This was an average Xanth novel, though it was an easy and enjoyable read. Book 8 of the series finds Princess Ivy board because she has been grounded at Castle Roogna. (Though of course, it was not her fault.) On top of that indignity, her parents had the audacity to go out and find a baby brother - Dolph - under a cabbage leaf. So, in desperation, she starts to watch the tapestry on the wall. She is soon joined by the ghost Jordan. Ivy becomes very excited as Jordan wants to tell her his tale of adventure. She gets a cleaner to make be able to see the tapestry better, and Jordan starts his tale. His magic talent is that he can heal himself from almost any injury! He at some point has ridden a very large snail! He also ends up trying to bring back an object to decide who will be the next King of Xanth. This is a nice addition to the Xanth series, and it is fun. The one thing the reader will notice is that puns are starting to become more prominent. It takes a little bit from the story, but if you already have read the first seven books, then this should not be too much of an issue.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Theresa

    Jordan the ghost doesn't remember his life so Ivy decides she's going to help him remember. And what a life it was. Jordan's talent is regeneration. He loses a finger, one grows back. A monster eats off his face, it grows back. He dies, he comes back to life. Piers goes through a lot of bloody gruesome scenes to prove to us that Jordan can comes back to life. So Jordan goes on a grand adventure that is doomed from the get go. He refuses to give it up though. Pigheadedness. He meets a ghost horse Jordan the ghost doesn't remember his life so Ivy decides she's going to help him remember. And what a life it was. Jordan's talent is regeneration. He loses a finger, one grows back. A monster eats off his face, it grows back. He dies, he comes back to life. Piers goes through a lot of bloody gruesome scenes to prove to us that Jordan can comes back to life. So Jordan goes on a grand adventure that is doomed from the get go. He refuses to give it up though. Pigheadedness. He meets a ghost horse he names Pook along the way and they become friends, and discovers the princess is the object of his search. I had no idea how to feel about Therody and Jordan through most of the book and when I finally let my guard down, I got punched in the gut; which is weird because the same thing happened to Jordan. Then I had to change my mind completely about the story, only to have the last chapter curve ball me again. Whew what a ride.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Blake

    I had a little trouble with the shift to a first person narrative when Jordan Ghost started telling the story of his death as he followed the events in the magic tapestry. Mainly because there was a lot of summarizing of events prior to the story at hand to provide the background, which is necessary but can get dull. Luckily that only lasted for a chapter or so and once the story got rolling again, it was another great, punny read. While I've enjoyed all the of the Xanth novels so far, I've I had a little trouble with the shift to a first person narrative when Jordan Ghost started telling the story of his death as he followed the events in the magic tapestry. Mainly because there was a lot of summarizing of events prior to the story at hand to provide the background, which is necessary but can get dull. Luckily that only lasted for a chapter or so and once the story got rolling again, it was another great, punny read. While I've enjoyed all the of the Xanth novels so far, I've really enjoyed the last 3 books and can't seem to stop reading them. I'm about to pick up Golem in the Gears and read the first chapter just to satisfy my curiosity with the intention of setting it down to read one of the many other books in the pile on my nightstand, but lately I haven't been able to stop reading a Xanth novel once I start.

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