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Lest Darkness Fall & To Bring the Light
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Manufacturer: Baen
Average Customer Rating: Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5

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Binding: Mass Market Paperback
Dewey Decimal Number: 813.54
EAN: 9780671877361
ISBN: 0671877364
Label: Baen
Manufacturer: Baen
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 368
Publication Date: 1996-07-01
Publisher: Baen
Studio: Baen

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Spotlight customer reviews:

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: Lest Darkness Falls
Comment: Great Book. I read Lest Darkness Falls forty years ago and then recently I found a re-release of the book on Amazon. Again it held me with a great story about time travel. Not even a barbarian could pry this book from my hands.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: De Camp Delights
Comment: Lest Darkness Fall by L. Sprague de Camp is the perfect introduction to this golden-age great science-fiction author. De Camp, along with Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard and others, were all part of John W. Campbell's, editor of Astounding and Unknown, stable of writers. These men created modern Science-Fiction. De Camp pretty much created the alternate universe story with this novel. Fans of de Camp can discuss his life and works at a Yahoo Discussion Group called d_for_de_Camp. Hopefully, one day soon, de Camp will be rediscovered and appreciated for the talent he is. His books always delight and should be reprinted for a new generation of readers. This book is one of his best.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: De Camp's masterpiece... plus bonus material!
Comment: "Lest Darkness Fall" (which is by far the bulk of this book) is the most amazing historical novel I've ever read, deliberately picking an extremely obscure period and characters and yet making them come brightly alive. Drake's short story, in comparison, just can't hold its own -- although it's quite interesting, on its own terms, particularly if you ARE familiary with Livy's Book 1 (and, believe me, you SHOULD be:-). No matter: the book as a whole is a bargain, and an absolute MUST

Customer Rating: Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5
Summary: Can History Be Changed?
Comment: This book pairs L. Sprague de Camp's "Lest Darkness Fall" with David Drake's "To Bring The Light". Also included is an introduction by Harry Turtledove. "Lest Darkness Fall" is one of the earliest examples of Alternate History, and is by far the best of the two stories in this book. In 1952 it was ranked 11th on the Astounding/Analog All-Time Poll, and in 1956 it was ranked 20th on the same poll. It is a shame that this story has been largely been forgotten since then, since it is clearly well researched and a real pleasure to read.

It is the story of Martin Padway, a student of history who is in Rome working on his thesis. He is sent back in time, to the year 535 A.D., when a lightning bolt strikes him. After realizing his position, he decides to try to prevent the Dark Ages, and finds himself increasingly pulled into the politics of the time. It is a fairly short novel, and well worth reading.

"To Bring The Light" is clearly based on "Lest Darkness Fall". In this story the main character is Flavia Herosilla, a well educated woman living in Rome in the year 751 A.D., during the celebration of the city's 1,000th birthday. As with Martin Padway, she is sent back in time by a lightning strike. She is sent to the time of the founding of Rome. Unlike the first story, where Martin Padway tries to change history, Flavia tries to recreate the founding of Rome based on the legends that she knows.

"Lest Darkness Fall" is a classic that should be read by anyone interested in Alternate Histories. "To Bring The Light", though not as good, is still an interesting story, and makes a good companion to "Lest Darkness Fall".

Customer Rating: Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5
Summary: Creative, Concise and Appealing
Comment: Martin Padway, mild-mannered archaeologist, is visiting Rome when he is thrust backwards in time... all the way back to the sixth century A.D. The Roman Empire is fading fast... facing foes on all sides... with the thousand-year blight we now know as the Dark Ages fast approaching. Can a single man -- Padway --change history and prevent the fall of Rome? Nothing less than the 'Age of Enlightenment' hangs in the balance.

The literary descendent of 'A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court', de Camp lets Padway grapple with raw issues. I found these areas the story's most interesting sections: how to make a living, having arrived with only modern currency in hand... how to avoid the authorities, given their proclivity to brand any new technology 'witchcraft'... how to assemble allies, fend off enemies and stay healthy in an environment not conducive to outsiders.

Because it was written in 1939, there is a level of 'political incorrectness' that is entertainingly fresh. Italian women, Muslims, the French and others are insulted with broad brush-strokes. Nonetheless, it is historically informative, important from a literary standpoint and makes for interesting reading. Despite its age, it is a fluid, fast read. de Camp had a lot of interesting things to say... and said them well.



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