The Heritage of Hastur: Nominated for a Hugo Award, and described as “Bradley’s best [Darkover] novel” by Locus, The Heritage of Hastur is a brilliant epic of the pivotal events in the love-hate relationship between the Terran worlds and the semi-alien offspring of the forgotten colonists who peopled Darkover. This is the complex and compelling tale of the early life of Regis Hastur, Darkover’s greatest monarch. But Heritage also spins the terrifying and heartbreaking story of those who sought to control the deadly Sharra Matrix and tells how Lew Alton met and lost his greatest love, Marjorie Scott. This is the unforgettable showdown between those Darkovan lords who would bargain away their world for the glories of Terran science and those who would preserve the special matrix powers that are at once the prize and the burden of the Darkover.
Sharra’s Exile: The most dangerous magical implement on all of Darkover was the infamous, legendary Sharra Matrix. Embodying the image of a chained woman wreathed in flames, it was the last remaining weapon of the Age of Chaos—an era of uncontrolled laran warfare which had almost destroyed all life on Darkover. The Sharra Matrix has been exiled offworld to one of the far-flung planets of the Terran Empire, in the protective custody of one who had suffered gravely from its use: Comyn Lord Lew Alton. But when Lew was called back to Darkover to contend for his rights, he had no choice but to bring this dangerous matrix back with him, and once Sharra Matrix was back, her flaming image spread far and wide, setting in motion events which would change the lands, the seven Domains, and the entire future of Darkover.
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Marion Zimmer was born in Albany, NY, on June 3, 1930, and married Robert Alden Bradley in 1949. Mrs. Bradley received her B.A. in 1964 from Hardin Simmons University in Abilene, Texas, then did graduate work at the University of California, Berkeley, from 1965-67.
She was a science fiction/fantasy fan from her middle teens, and made her first sale as an adjunct to an amateur fiction contest in Fantastic/Amazing Stories in 1949. She had written as long as she could remember, but wrote only for school magazines and fanzines until 1952, when she sold her first professional short story to Vortex Science Fiction. She wrote everything from science fiction to Gothics, but is probably best known for her Darkover novels.
In addition to her novels, Mrs. Bradley edited many magazines, amateur and professional, including Marion Zimmer Bradley's Fantasy Magazine, which she started in 1988. She also edited an annual anthology called Sword and Sorceress for DAW Books.
Over the years she turned more to fantasy; The House Between the Worlds, although a selection of the Science Fiction Book Club, was "fantasy undiluted". She wrote a novel of the women in the Arthurian legends -- Morgan Le Fay, the Lady of the Lake, and others -- entitled Mists of Avalon, which made the NY Times best seller list both in hardcover and trade paperback, and she also wrote The Firebrand, a novel about the women of the Trojan War. Her historical fantasy novels, The Forest House, Lady of Avalon, Mists of Avalon are prequels to Priestess of Avalon
She died in Berkeley, California on September 25, 1999, four days after suffering a major heart attack. She was survived by her brother, Leslie Zimmer; her sons, David Bradley and Patrick Breen; her daughter, Moira Stern; and her grandchildren.
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