Battle Circle

Battle Circle is a trilogy of science fiction novels by Piers Anthony. Originally published separately, the trilogy was later combined into a single volume.[1]

Setting

The novels take place on a post-apocalyptic Earth. The history is not given in detail, but the landscape is filled with the ruins of the previous civilization, and large areas (referred to as the "badlands") are still deadly because of radiation, presumably from nuclear war. In North America, there are three main civilizations: the crazies, the underworlders, and the nomads, who are the main focus of the novels.

Combat

The nomad society lives by a strict code of conduct. Conflicts over anything, a perceived slight or the right to sleep with a woman, are settled by combat in the battle circle. Often skilled fighters will fight to recruit men into their tribes.

Each man is known by the weapon(s) he wields, hence the names of the title characters. Most men wield one of the six traditional weapons: sword, club, sticks, staff, daggers or morning star (more commonly known as a heavy flail - a spiked ball on a chain). Sos, originally named 'Sol the Sword', is forced to give up his name and weapon after being defeated by Sol of All Weapons, and learns to use a non-standard weapon: a metal cable with weights on the end of it. Var wields sticks, essentially two batons, also made of metal. Neq wields a traditional sword.

Despite the fact that the weapons are deadly, fights are rarely fatal. Combat ceases when one man is obviously defeated, either because he cannot defend himself or because he has left the circle, voluntarily or otherwise.

Combat can also be between teams, either fighting together in pairs or in multiple single matches. In the latter case, strategy can become involved choosing who to put in the circle against a particular opponent.

Names

The nomads have a very particular naming convention. Men choose their own first name, which follows the pattern consonant-vowel-consonant. As mentioned above, their last name is the weapon(s) they wield. Women are inherently nameless, and when they are bound to a man (a situation which is breakable at any time by either party) her name is the man's name +a. Children take the name of their father +i. So if Var had a wife, she would be Vara, and if they had children, they would all be known as Vari until they achieved adulthood.

Series synopsis

Sos the Rope

Sos the Rope (1968): Two wandering warriors meet at an isolated hostel, one of many maintained by the crazies for their own inexplicable reasons. A dispute breaks out when they discover they share the same name. Sol of All Weapons insists that Sol the Sword change his name. When the latter refuses, they enter the battle circle. Sol the Sword nearly wins with an ingenious maneuver, but his opponent is superlatively skilled and defeats him. Now nameless, the loser is honor-bound to trek to the Mountain to end his life. However, Sol of All Weapons is greatly impressed by his opponent's astuteness. Sol offers part of a name (Sos) in return for becoming his adviser. For Sol has a grand dream: to forge an empire from the many small tribes. It is revealed that the people in the Mountain, a remnant of the ancient civilization, produce goods that the crazies give to the nomads, thus stabilizing the society. Eventually Sol, along with Sos' daughter (who Sol claims as his own) are forced to the Mountain and Sos is ordered by the underworld to dismantle the empire.

Var the Stick

Var the Stick (1972): Rather than dismantling the empire Sos leads an attack on the Mountain and it is eventually destroyed. His (and in her mind Sol's) daughter escapes with Var and, pursued by both Sol and Sos, flee by the Aleutian Islands to China, which has reconstituted an imperial civilization. Reconciled with Sol and Sos, they start back to America. Pursued by the Emperor of China, the two older men die so that the others can escape.

Neq the Sword

Neq the Sword (1975): With the Mountain in ruins nomadic civilization is collapsing into barbarism. Working with the remaining crazies Neq attempts to reconstitute his society. Through a misunderstanding he kills the returning Var, but establishes a relationship with the daughter of Sol and Sos. In time the Mountain is restored under Neq's leadership and without secrecy. At the close of the book the inhabitants of the Mountain are developing trade with a similar site in Latin America. It will take a long time, but slowly civilization is being rebuilt.

References

  1. ^ http://www.iblist.com/author79.htm

External links

53rd Annual Grammy Awards

The 53rd Annual Grammy Awards were held on February 13, 2011, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. They were broadcast on CBS with a rating of 26.6 million viewers. Barbra Streisand was honored as the MusiCares Person of the Year two nights prior to the telecast on February 11. Nominations were announced on December 1, 2010 and a total of 109 awards were presented. Most of the awards were presented during the pre-telecast, which took place at the Los Angeles Convention Center next to the Staples Center, where the main telecast took place. The eligibility period was September 1, 2009 to September 30, 2010.For the third year, nominations were announced on prime-time television as part of "The GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live! – Countdown to Music's Biggest Night" a one-hour special broadcast live on CBS from Club Nokia at L.A. Live.

Arcade Fire won Album of the Year for The Suburbs becoming the first indie act to do so, and surprising many viewers and critics. Baba Yetu composed and arranged by Christopher Tin won Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s), is the first Grammy given to a piece of music written for a Video Game. Esperanza Spalding was awarded Best New Artist. Lady Antebellum won five awards including Record of the Year and Song of the Year for "Need You Now". Other multiple winners include: David Frost, John Legend, Lady Gaga, Jay-Z, and Jeff Beck with three awards each. The Black Keys, Eminem, Herbie Hancock, Alicia Keys, The Roots, Christopher Tin and BeBe Winans won two awards each.The television broadcast of the 53rd Grammy Awards marked the last awards show for the Grammy's executive producer, John Cossette, before his death on April 26, 2011.

Gerald Clayton

Gerald William Clayton is a jazz pianist and composer born in Utrecht, Netherlands and raised in Los Angeles.

Piers Anthony bibliography

This is a partial list of works by Piers Anthony. Anthony has published 166 works in total from 1956 to December 2013.

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