Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Saga of Recluce

I'm not certain if I've not blogged about this before, but the Saga of Recluce by L.E. Modesitt, Jr. is one of the most brilliant and creative pieces of work I've ever read. Modesitt brings in a new way of looking at things - rather than the cliched fight between good and evil, this time around it is the eternal struggle between fight between Chaos and Order. For the most part, you would find that neither one is shown as being good, nor evil (well, one is evil in the eyes of the other and there is a judgement, but not until much later). People who have the power to wield either do what they do because of their own personal reasons and beliefs, and rarely because of some greater good - although greater good does happen, eventually. The origin of both order and chaos is even more interesting, and is reminiscent of some of the masterpieces of SF. More importantly, there is a balance, i.e. neither Chaos nor Order can "destroy" the other without destroying itself and as a result, there is always a fixed amount of either in the world. Create too much order and there is too much chaos that pops up. Foster chaos and you end up with people or places that have a very high concentration or order, and vice versa. No empire of Chaos nor Order will (or can) last forever. Which brings about some very interesting plots, of course. More details on the series in the reverse chronological order from the TOR website:

Ordermaster Ordermaster February 2005
Wellspring of Chaos Wellspring of Chaos April 2004
Scion of Cyador Scion of Cyador December 2001
Magi'i of Cyador Magi'i of Cyador May 2001
Colors of Chaos Colors of Chaos January 2000
The White Order The White Order April 1999
The Chaos Balance The Chaos Balance June 1998
Fall of Angels Fall of Angels July 1997
The Death of Chaos The Death of Chaos June 1996
The Order War The Order War February 1996
The Magic Engineer The Magic Engineer July 1995
The Towers of the Sunset The Towers of the Sunset August 1993
The Magic of Recluce The Magic of Recluce May 1992
The origin of folks who can tap either are a result of Angels and Demons, beings who came through when a Chaos-Order portal opens into our world. How that happened is an even more interesting read on its own. There is amazing amount of detail, and everything has been so very well thought out that it's simply complete in itself. If you've not read this series, I'd very strongly recommend that you do! One of the best SF authors of our times! More details on the Recluce page.