It's taken me nearly three years but I've finally finished reading the quartet of books that make up Jack Vance's classic fantasy series The Dying Earth
. Perhaps I might have been better off reading the omnibus but I like breaking up series rather than reading them all in one go. Especially with a series like this in which the stories are only loosely connected.
The series in all comprises of numerous short stories, a novella and two novels. This final book contains the novella and two of the short stories, all relating to "Rhialto The Marvellous" and his cabal of weasley, conniving fellow magicians who are always trying to further their own ends at each other's expense.
Like the other books in the series, the best thing about these stories is the dry humour of the narrative, Vance's clever turn of phrase and the dialogue of the characters. Don't come to these books expecting extensive world building, character development or fast paced action, you'll go away disappointed. But in reading these books, it is easy to see why it has been so influential on the genre.