The Best of Jack Vance

I finished reading this book today. It contains the stories:

Sail 25

Ullward’s Retreat

The Last Castle

Abercrombie Station

The Moon Moth


It was nice to read something of Vance that didn’t have to do with the Dying Earth.  The stories mainly illustrate aspects of the human condition that are universal no matter what the setting. This includes greed, misanthropy, and following the crowd amongst other things. I particularly liked The Last Castle.

Vance always conveys a mood in his writing more than a concrete sense of place. The surreal and lonely earth of the future seems plausible, while also frightening and sad. The light he sheds on the future accurately reflects the world of our day that we think we know so well. In reality, the world is a vast and scary place at times, and no amount of technology will change that fact.

2 thoughts on “The Best of Jack Vance”

  1. Yes, that was a really good story too! I thought a couple of these stories would be great movies, I’m surprised his books haven’t been gobbled up by Hollywood like Philip Dick’s have.

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