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Dungeon 2 - Philip Jose Farmer

Dungeon 2 - Philip Jose Farmer

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Published by: Don Okello Anabouani on Jul 16, 2011
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01/27/2013

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WELCOME TO THE DUNGEONIt is a cave from which the unwary can fall into the sky of an alien world.It is an ocean of monsters, dotted with islands of deadly danger.It is a world of captives seeking an escape from the strange prison that transcends timeand space.From a subterranean maze to the jaws of doom, this is the quest of Clive Folliot,explorer and hero!A BYRON PREISS BOOK
 
BANTAM BOOKSForewordBooks should burn, not be burned.What they do or is done to them depends upon the reader, the person who holds thebook in his or her hand. Some books do indeed radiate a high heat, and blaze with alight that blinds but which, paradoxically, enables you to see as you never saw before.Some books glow with a gentle warmth, and you want to relish the mild fire again and
 
again. Some are matches that drive away the cold and dark within a small area. These,when extinguished, cannot be relit. You light another match
 — 
that is, read anotherbook 
 — 
enjoy the not-too-bright light and faint fire. When it's out, you can't relight it,and you don't want to do so.Then there are books that feel soggy when you first open them and are dripping by thetime you finish diem, if you do. They have put out whatever fire was in your mind.Others, I'm sorry to say, only give a pain akin to hemorrhoids.The strange thing about all this is that the same book can turn into a soaked lump inthe hands of one reader but be a blaze in the mind of another reader.My own viewpoint is that a book can be judged objectively. Not, though, by anymember of Homo sapiens. Perhaps, in heaven, there is an angel who, though amongthe elect, must still pay for his sins on Earth. He's given the job of reading every work of fiction produced on Earth. He must write reviews of these, all stored in celestialdisks. All excellencies are noted. So
• vii •
 viiiPHILIP JOSE FARMER'S: THE DUNGEONare all flaws. Another angel, his sins even greater, must rewrite the stories to divinestandards. When the original author gets to heaven, he or she must read the reviewsand rewrites of his works. That's pain enough to reverberate through eternity. But thisis, after all, heaven. The rewriter angel pats the sobbing creature on the head and says,"There, there. You did your best. That's what counts up here."If the author asks what happens to writers who did not do their best, the angel saysnothing but points to "down below." Way down below.The above fantasy came to me as 1 sat down to write this foreword. Until my tochistouched the chair, I had no idea of what was roiling in the hinterlands of my brain,such as it is. But contact with the seat of the chair was a spark emitted by the closingof a switch. Truth will out, however strange its form.What gave birth to the above was, I think, an eagerness and a sharp-edged curiosity tosee the final result of this many-volumed book. The Black Tower, volume I of TheDungeon series, by Richard Lupoff, will be out in a few months. (I am writing the
 
foreword for this second volume on April 27, 1988.) On my desk is a reproduction of the cover, superbly done by Robert Gould. I have not seen the interior illustrations,but I expect them to match the cover. This more than hints at the mystery and greatadventure and the gruesome quest of the hero and the even more gruesome thingsbeyond that phallic-shaped keyhole through which the hero (or is he the villain?) isabout to enter. He is looking behind him to catch sight of anyone trying to sneak up onhim. He is also looking at you, the reader, and daring you to follow him.While I write this introduction to the book at hand, the Canadian Brass Basin Streetgroup is playing "That's a Plenty" on my CFD 5. The music glows with satisfactionand joy, delight in the plenum of life. I hope that you find this volume and thepreceding one
 — 
and the entire single book composed of these volumes
 — 
as full of joyin the many-faceted jewel of life as "That's a Plenty." I am optimistic that you willbecause of my
THE DARK ABYSS • ix
 own feeling that the The Dungeon is a plenum slowly filling with golden liquor. Thatis, it's not yet a plenum but has the potential of being one. The characters are "-certainly not enjoying themselves, but the reader should relish the adventure.The writers, too, relish their project. They, like me, know the classics of bothmainstream and science fiction, and they know the pulp works. My adventure storieshave been a fusion of the forward-rushing spirit of the pulps tempered by the classics.Lupoff and Coville have the same approach, not because they were told to emulatemine but because they naturally would do so. And they are assured a place in heaven.They always do their best. No hackwork for them.The aim of these is to enflesh, as it were, the geist infusing my works. Their works are
not spinoffs of my • fiction. They do not continue the worlds or characters I have
created in earlier books. They do not attempt to imitate my style, which would bedifficult, anyway, because I have more than one.These Dungeon writers are feeding on the psyche, the philosophy, the themes of myscience fiction adventure stories, though they will, of course, introduce their ownduring their development of their own works. Every person is unique. He or she hashis own brand of amazing grace.(I must note a side thought, the admirable restraint i of Lupoff and Coville in notemulating my unfortunate I: penchant for puns. They've got class.)What are the themes, the philosophy, the spirit of my ; works? They are:

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