Recommend Books by Andre Norton

Every month on my campus they let several local vendors set up stalls along one of the campus roads. One of these vendors is a bookseller, who usually has a sizeable Science Fiction section set up. Today, amongst the rest of the goodies, he had a whole lot of books by Andre Norton.

I know I’ve heard this author is a good one, and I even think I read and enjoyed a couple of her (I think I remember this is a pen name for a female author) books when I was a kid. So I thought I’d pick up a couple of books–but I wasn’t sure which ones.

I didn’t memorize any of the titles, because I figured I could come to my office, look up Andre Norton on, and be reminded of the titles and at the same time get a feel for which ones are to be recommended and which ones not.

But none of the Amazon titles are ringing a bell–they don’t seem to be listing any of the books that are being sold in the stall.

So, I defer to the collective knowledge of the Dopers. Which obscure Andre Norton titles should I be happy to spend two bucks on?

I do remember one title–Year of the Unicorn. Any good?


I haven’t read a lot of her titles, but I do recall enjoying almost all of her fantasy works that I did read. I was rather sad when she died back in 05.

My likes…The Trillium series, co-written with Julian May and Marion Zimmer Bradley.
The Senses books, I read Taste of Magic and Scent of Magic.

Those are the only ones I can recall offhand, but I’m sure I read more of her work. For a writer like her though, I’d get about anything for 2 bucks. :slight_smile:

I liked Dark Piper, and The Crystal Gryphon.

Other titles ring bells, but those two I remember


Talk about timing. I just picked up a tattered copy of Daybreak 2250 last nigt. I’ve read it several times over the years. Post apocolyptic. Very enjoyable.

Year of the Unicorn is a Witch World title, set in the continent of High Hallack (IIRC). It’s got a sequel, Jargoon Pard. It’s a rather standard Nortonish plot – young man and young woman face otherworldly evil and strange locations while discovering their own personal magic. I quite liked it.

Crystal Gryphon, Gryphon in Glory, and her other “Gryphon” books are also set in High Hallack, and form a series, and were pretty good as well (IMO).

Witch World, Three Against the Witch World, Sorceress of the Witch World and others of her “Witch World” (i.e., title includes “Witch World,” not just set in the Witch World) series are set on the other continent (Escore/Escarp) and were pretty good, as well.

Wasn’t so enamored of her “Hawk” series (Ware Hawk, others) of Witch World books.

I’ve generally found her earlier books to be more enjoyable than her later books and collaborations.

I’ve only read Forerunner and Forerunner Foray of her space books, and found them okay. Beyond that… Perilous Dreams was alright, the Beast Master / Lord of Thunder I found rather dire, … of course I was entertained by Quag Keep but most everybody else found that rather dire.

My favorite Andre Norton books:

Crystal Gryphon and its sequels have already been mentioned. Also Year of the Unicorn, which you’ve mentioned, and its sequel The Jargoon Pard–good stuff. Definitely get Year of the Unicorn and JP if you can find it. I like The Jargoon Pard a bit better, myself, but they’re both worth it.

Also as mentioned, Witch World is a good bet, as is Web of the Witch World, and also Three Against the Witch World, Warlock of the Witch World and Sorceress of the Witch World. (Start with either Witch World or Three Against.)

There are a number of other Witch World books, but those are, IMO, the best. A few–like Zarthsor’s Bane–aren’t worth the time. If you find yourself in love with Witch World, then dig them up, but otherwise…eh.

More good Norton: (In case you’re wondering, yes, I have a lot of these. I got hooked on Norton in the seventh grade and have read entirely more of her work than is probably good for me.)

Sargasso of Space, Plague Ship, and there’s a double, Voodoo Planet and…I forget the other one and the shelf is downstairs. Oh, there’s also Postmarked the Stars, same characters. There were also a couple of collaborations Norton did later, same characters. (Redline the Stars was one of them…I didn’t enjoy those very much, but YMMV)

Sargasso of Space is the best of them, but the others are fun, and if you enjoy SoS by all means look for the others.

Another one of my faves is The Zero Stone. There is a sequel, Uncharted Stars (I’ve also seen it listed as Unchartered Stars) which isn’t as good, but it’s still worth it if you liked the Zero Stone.

I agree that Beast Master and Lord of Thunder were dire. I didn’t like Quag Keep much, though.

The book that sucked me in when I was in seventh grade was Wraiths of Time–it’s not on my list of favorites today, but it’s not on my list of dire ones either.

Andre Norton wrote a metric truckload of books. Some of them are great fun, and some of them are…I feel that I will have time off in purgatory for making it all the way through Moon Called, for instance, or the aforementioned Zarthsor’s Bane.

I liked Starman’s Son 2250 AD, and the Beast Master books. The Witch World books never did it for me. I read most of them nearly 50 years ago, so I don’t know how the older ones would stand up.

Did you know she has a book whose title starts with every letter of the alphabet?

I’ll probably get pelted for this (and I don’t know if you can even get this book anymore,) but as a young adult, I loved Voorloper. No, I didn’t understand it completely. It just seemed so mysterious at the time, like there was so much history and subcreation just roiling under the surface.

what was the name of the Andre Norton book with a young male protagonist who had hooves and yellowish eyes?

I really enjoyed most of Norton’s books, unless she had a co-author. My particular favorite is The Zero Stone. I didn’t really get into the Witch World books as much as some people, but they were, I believe, her most popular books.

I personally liked Elvenbane. The Elvenbane series, not as much, but the first book was a pretty easy read.

That’s The Crystal Gryphon and sequels.

Besides the ones mentioned, I’d recommend Moon of Three Rings and it’s sequel Exiles of the Stars; the first isn’t as good, but it’s OK. Also, Catseye, *Star Gate, Dread Companion, The Time Traders, Galactic Derelict, Judgement of Janus, Victory on Janus, * and Here Abide Monsters.. Her Elvenbane aka Halfblood Chronicles collaberation with Mercedes Lackey is also good.