Wednesday 7 January 2009

Dragonfly by: Ursula K. LeGuin

Ursula K. LeGuin
Various Editions

Supposedly this is the last novel of Earthsea, or at least that is what the book jacket says at its time of printing in 1999. This book is set after Tehanu, or at least after some of its events. However it is a strange story. It is about dragons and man, and how they are but two sides of the same race.

In it, Iraina a young girl from Irania, travels to Roke to study as a mage. This causes a split among the masters, five to four against her. There is even the threat of violence among the master mages.

In the final confrontation on Roke Hill she kills the master summoner, or returns him to death and turns momentarily into a dragon. She says she will return if they ask her. But she intends to go further west to her people, to the dragons, to find out who she is and the rest of her true name.

Again this story leaves the Earthsea Cycle incomplete, unfinished.

Key Notes:

1. I need to photo copy all the Earthsea maps out larger and compare them.
2. Should also map out each of Ged's journeys and compare his travels and points of intersection.

The Books of Earthsea:

A Wizard of Earthsea - 1968
The Tombs of Atuan - 1971
The Farthest Shore - 1972 (Winner of the National Book Award)
Tehanu: The Last Book of Earthsea - 1990 (Winner of the Nebula Award)
Tales from Earthsea - 2001
The Other Wind - 2001

The Short Stories of Earthsea:

The Word of Unbinding - 1964
The Rule of Names - 1964
Dragonfly - 1997
Darkrose and Diamond - 1999
The Finder - 2001
The Bones of the Earth - 2001
On The High Marsh - 2001


The Word of Unbinding
The Finder
Darkrose and Diamon
The Rule of Names
The Bones of the Earth
A Wizard of Earthsea
The Tombs of Atuan
On the High Marsh
The Farthest Shore
The Other Wind

Note: The short story "Dragonfly" from Tales from Earthsea is intended to fit in between Tehanu and The Other Wind and, according to Le Guin, is "an important bridge in the series as a whole".

Also check out this great Earthsea site. It should be noted as well that these books have editions in Children's (9-12) Teen, Sci-Fi and adult fiction, It appeals to a very wide audience.

(First written as Journal Reading Notes in 1999.)

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