Currently reading: Carnivores of Light and Darkness

I picked up Alan Dean Foster’s Carnivores of Light and Darkness for a quick read at bedtime. The title is an obvious variation on Roger Zelazny’s Creatures of Light and Darkness.

It’s a more-or-less continuous adventure of a charismatic herdsman from a tribe who live on a barren coast. Unlike other coastal peoples, they seem not to live on the bounteous marine life. Instead, the shore is a place to pick up flotsam.

The herdsman is enjoined by a dying sea-farer to undertake a hazardous, perhaps impossible rescue mission and he sets off. He moves quickly from adventure to adventure and unexplained phenomenon to unexplained phenomenon. This is a fantasy, not science fiction. He acquires companions and uses mysterious weapons embued with magical powers. Yet he claims to be no magician. One companion is a giant, black, hybrid leopard-cheetah (unlikely), which talks. Another is a tiresomely cynical man.

The author contributes a few biological mistakes in the book, such as the notion that, like a chicken laying eggs, a tree would produce infertile seed if not pollinated.

I’m a little disappointed that I’m almost at the end of the book and the three companions haven’t arrived at their goal yet. Unbeknownst to me, I’ve started reading a series. There’s a review here.

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