Michael Moorcock

Stormkhan

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#2
Met him a couple of times, got a few of his books, nagged him into becoming an honourary member of our RPG club.
I prefer his Oswald Bastaple books but some Elric (such as Elric at the End of Time) is okay.
 
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#3
First off I have to admit that science-fiction does not rock my boat in the slightest so I'm not qualified to comment on that side of Moorcock's output.

Having said that, as I've mentioned previously on this board, Mother London is one of my all-time favourite novels and deserves to be far wider read. Personally I'd go as far as to say that it's a modern classic which puts authors like McEwan and Amis to shame and its protagonists deserve to be up there with some of the heroes of the English novel.

You'll find echoes of Ackroyd and Sinclair and maybe some latter-day Dickens but Mother London is a big, friendly, hopeful book which I can't recommend highly enough. I'd love to think someone might read this post, buy the book, and enjoy it as much as I did - let me know if you do.
 
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#4
I've just finished, King of the City (2000). Great stuff! I always make it a special point to seek out his work, whenever I hit the bookshop trail, but then, I am a fan.

There's a really excellent site, Moorcock's Miscellany, devoted to his life and work, here:

http://www.multiverse.org/index.php

It's full of information, samples of his work (in various fields) and loads of other stuff! Well worth a visit!

:)
 

sunsplash1

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#5
Yeh, Spookdaddy Mother London is a great read. Really liked the Dancers at the end of Time, Trilogy, I think(?) as well. that Moorcock fella is an interesting character... :D
 

Timble2

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#6
My personal favourites among the fantasy books are the second Corum trilogy:

The Bull and the Spear
The Oak and the Ram
The Sword and the Stallion


Which draw heavily on the Mabinogion and other Celtic mythology.

Mother London is a classic and its should be better known.

Among his other non-series novels I like Behold the Man and Gloriana, or the Unfulfill'd Queen.

I wonder if Behold the Man would actually be more controversial now than when it came out originally?
 

Stormkhan

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#8
If you can get him, it'd be an interesting interview. I would point out that his funniest (although unintentionally) novel is Dawn of The Hawklords, where the heroes are Hawkwind who saves mankind by playing damn fine music!
 

graylien

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#9
The Blood / Fabulous Harbours/ War Amongst the Angels trilogy is well worth a read if you enjoy the more grotesque and baroque side of Moorcock's work (although Fabulous Harbours itself is a bit scrappy).

I'm surprised no one's mentioned the Jerry Cornelius quartet yet. The first Moorcock I ever read was A Cure for Cancer, which I still think is an astonishing tour-de-force, although the frequent late 1960s pop culture references do rather date it. And The Final Programme - though far more conventional - is one of the funniest books I've ever read. (It was turned into a film, which Moorcock hated. Anyone seen it?)
 

Jerry_B

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#10
I think my own personal favourite is The War Hound and the World's Pain, which took an interesting approach to a Faustian Pact.

And let's not forget, as far as music is concerned, that he also wrote songs with Blue Oyster Cult ;)
 

dreeness

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#11
Wizardry and Wild Romance -- (a study of epic fantasy) informative, insightful, entertaining, thoughtful.

I remember liking the "Jerry Cornelius" things at the time.
 

Yithian

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#12
I wanted to like Moorcock so much what with my penchant for Hawkwind, Roleplaying stuff and classic fantasy, but I didn't even finish the first Elric book (title forgotten) - it just came across as stilted teenage wank-fodder. :(

That said, i have promised myself a venture into Mother London before long.
 

Timble2

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#13
Stormkhan said:
If you can get him, it'd be an interesting interview. I would point out that his funniest (although unintentionally) novel is Dawn of The Hawklords, where the heroes are Hawkwind who saves mankind by playing damn fine music!
It was supposed to be part of a trilogy, there's a sequel Queens of Deleria...for some reason the final part never seems to have appeared....

Yes, an interview would be great, though according to Ansible Link he's not been too well recently.

I wanted to like Moorcock so much what with my penchant for Hawkwind, Roleplaying stuff and classic fantasy, but I didn't even finish the first Elric book (title forgotten) - it just came across as stilted teenage wank-fodder.
Some of MMs early stuff is a bit stilted, but he's been writing since he was a teenager and some of his early stories were written at high speed to pay the bills.
 

PeniG

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#16
Elric was cult reading in my first D&D group, and my husband liked Moorcock so much when we met, I had to read the entire 22-book Eternal Champion cycle in the order he specified early in our relationship. The intensity has worn off, but he still has his own set of shelves in the Collections Room (with pulps, Lovecraft, and Sherlock Holmes). I haven't read much else of Moorcock's. but that one-big-swallow reading of the EC left me feeling qualified to say that Elric is like the "hit single" off a good album - not the best track, because the best track is less accessible to mainstream audiences than the catchy mediocrity of the hit. The first Corum series was the best track IMHO.

People who don't enjoy discussing literature in a critical way can skip the rest of this post.

When helping out at a Renfaire during the same era, a Rennie who doubled as a schoolteacher, in one of those long academic discussions you have with Rennies when it's raining or at night after the customers go home, contrasted Moorcock with Tolkien as a talented hackwriter vs. a non-talented literary writer. The point was not to declare one better than the other, but to distinguish what they did and how they did it and show that writing in the same genre did not necessarily make them directly comparable. I think the distinction is valid, but not definitive. This conversation led me both to regard hackwriters with more respect than I was trained to and to view the issue of talent more realisticly. This is also about the time that I began to recognize the irrelavance of hierarchical judgements about literature.

Allt this makes Moorcock a pretty important writer to me, even though I don't enjoy his work all that much.
 

GNC

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#17
graylien said:
And The Final Programme - though far more conventional - is one of the funniest books I've ever read. (It was turned into a film, which Moorcock hated. Anyone seen it?)
I have it on DVD and like it a lot. It's superbly designed and has a great cast, and is even quite funny in places. Sort of Avengers-ish. I've never read the book though, so perhaps it's a travesty?
 
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#18
gncxx said:
graylien said:
And The Final Programme - though far more conventional - is one of the funniest books I've ever read. (It was turned into a film, which Moorcock hated. Anyone seen it?)
I have it on DVD and like it a lot. It's superbly designed and has a great cast, and is even quite funny in places. Sort of Avengers-ish. I've never read the book though, so perhaps it's a travesty?
This one?:

www.imdb.com/title/tt0070289/

www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0000 ... enantmc-20
www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000059 ... ntmagaz-21

Reviews are mixed but interesting.
 

Timble2

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#19
gncxx said:
I have it on DVD and like it a lot. It's superbly designed and has a great cast, and is even quite funny in places. Sort of Avengers-ish. I've never read the book though, so perhaps it's a travesty?
It is entertaining, but it misses the black comedy of the book.

I remember it coming out and one of the reviews said that it was a bit likeTheAvengers with sex, nudity and bad language.
 

barfing_pumpkin

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#20
Behold the Man is excellent. The Elric stuff is...interesting. Not great in terms of prose or pacing, but kind of enjoyable in its own right.

Still haven't managed to finish Stormbringer, though. One for the New Year's resolution, I expect.
 

Mal_Adjusted

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#21
greets

i'm a big moorcock fan.

got most of his books (missing a couple of the latest ones)

the jerry cornelius ones are fun (very 60's / 70's)

corum is excellent if you like celtic mythology

behold the man - wonderfully subversive

for lovers of eccentricity i can recommend the Colonel Pyat books which start with "byzantium endures" "the laughter of carthage" "jerusalem commands " "the vengeance of rome" (the last one due out in jan 2006 apparently.)

i seem to remember seeing that he's more or less wrapping up his writing projects

dancers at the end of time is an interesting take on what do in a society of abundance

"the revenge of the rose" is one of his better later works about (amongst other things) a giant nomad caravan.

mother london and gloriana are stand alone works and both very good

moorcock (if he has a problem ) is sometme sbeing a bit too obvious with his allegory but that may just be me

politically very sound

mal
 

Stormkhan

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#22
graylien said:
And The Final Programme - though far more conventional - is one of the funniest books I've ever read. (It was turned into a film, which Moorcock hated. Anyone seen it?)
Yep. Rather amusing 60's schtick. Nice finish though.
 

Heckler

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#23
As a teen I recall finding a rather dog-eared copy of a Moorcock book at a second hand shop with the sagest piece of advice I've ever read by way of the review of the book in my hand.

"Moorcock delights" It said simply and who can argue with that?

Can't knock a guy who worked on a song with The Blue Oyster Cult either.
 

many_angled_one

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#24
I've pretty much only read the Eternal Champion series.

I prefered Corum to Elric, I just think it was better thought out and more coheisive than the more episodic Elric saga.

I do love the way he portrayed the multiverse and the eternal war of Chaos vs Order.

Good stuff.
 
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#26
OK Michael Moorcock (I'm still not too comfie with Mike yet ;) ) is up for an interview and SK has agreed to go point so if you want to suggest questions then fire away.
 

gridban

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#27
Haven't read any Moorcock for years but I remember liking the Jerry Cornelius books, especially the last one "The Condition of Muzak". After Spookdaddy's recommendation "Mother London" is definitely on my must-read list. I don't like the fantasy stuff because, well, I don't like fantasy - science fiction yes, fantasy no, and it annoys me a bit that the two genres always seem to get lumped together. I may not be remembering this accurately but I think I read an interview years ago where Moorcock himself said he viewed most of his fantasy books as mere potboilers.
 

Stormkhan

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#28
PeniG - While the Stormbringer RPG waned then disappeared, Hawkmoon is still going strong ... in France! There's still some excellent supplements and scnarios being written, as long as you can read French!

Considering the volume of work Moorcock has produced one question I was going to ask is ... "Is there one book you really, really wish you never even considered writing?" The answer might be quite iluminating!
 

Mal_Adjusted

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#29
greets

re michael moorcock

first is he OK - if i remember correctly he lives in sw USA (or has he moved)

also is never coming back?

has he finished the eternal champion books and what of the future plans please?

mal
 

Stormkhan

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#30
Come on, people! This is the creator of Jerry Cornelius and (almost) creator of alternative history fiction ... are there no other burning questions?
 
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