Book Notification

Deryni Universe Books In Order

Book links take you to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn money from qualifying purchases.

Publication Order of Chronicles Of Deryni Books

Publication Order of Deryni Books

The Deryni Archives (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
Deryni Magic (1990)Description / Buy at Amazon
Codex Derynianus (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Deryni Tales (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon

The American author Katherine Kurtz is a fantasy writer with an extremely broad and expansive imaginative scope. Taking in entire landscapes, she’s been able to project vast and exciting worlds that capture the readers attention. With ideas that take on big themes, she’s also been able to craft characters that resonate with her readers as well. One series that she’s particularly well known for is that of her Deryni franchise, the first one coming out back in 1970. Taking place in the Deryni Universe, they chart the histories and the lives of the many people inhabiting it. With military conflicts and everyday politics and daily life, it draws in from a wide range of different people into one central series.

Using an extremely wide sense of scope and imagination, this takes place over an incredibly wide arena. Drawing parallels with the real world and that of history, Kurtz manages to bring in inspiration from real-life events. Influenced by the eras from the 10th to 12th centuries feudal era of England, it manages to take in ideas and themes, bringing them to life through its narratives and characters.

Deryni Rising

Originally brought out in 1970, this was the first ever book to be released that was set within the Deryni Universe. It was also the first book in ‘The Chronicles of Deryni’ trilogy that was released as well, establishing not only a franchise but a series too. With the others following on in chronological order, this is the earliest title set within the universe to date.

Dealing with the big ideas of history, this exemplifies some of the best that fantasy has to offer as a genre. Putting human traits and characteristics up there on the big stage, it gives them an almost operatic like set of qualities. As an author Katherine Kurtz really understands this well, and draws out everything that is on offer to her, with a clear comprehension of what’s on the table for her here. Whilst the locations themselves are typically fantasy lead at first glance, there’s a lot here that relates to the real world. Everything is very intricately plotted out as well, with Kurtz being aware of every piece available to her, knowing where it all is at all times. The reader can really get into it, following it all on the map, but this isn’t fully necessary, as it’s easy to access for the newcomer too. With the characters themselves, whilst there might be vast numbers of them Kurtz never loses sight of the central protagonists. Keeping track of the key players, she allows the reader to anchor themselves to these people, thus providing them a clear gateway into this unique and exciting world. As with so many fantasy novels, its easy to get characters that are too far removed from the readers frame of reference, but here Kurtz has avoided that by building her characters in a manner which resonates with her readership on a universal level.

Taking place in the land of Gwynedd, this follows the character of Kelson Haldane as he must protect the crown. Following the recent death of King Brion Haldane, this all takes place over a two-week period, as there’s an usurper to the crown in their midst. Dealing with the politics of the situation, this starts in 1120 in the month of November, as Kelson must work at preventing a serious situation from arising. Will he be able to keep the crown in safe hand? Can he remain alive whilst doing so? What will happen during the Deryni rising?

Deryni Checkmate

Released in 1972 just two years after the first, it carries on the Deryni Unverse franchise as a whole, being set one year chronologically afterwards. It is also the second in ‘The Chronicles of Deryni’ trilogy, further establishing not just the franchise, but the series too. Following on in much the same vein as before, it further expands on the world in terms of both scope and characters.

Once again delving back into history, she carries on from the first with this second title in this series carrying on from the first. Whilst this series might make up a smaller section of the overall Deryni franchise, everything in it is essential to the overall world-building that Kurtz has become so good at. Relating her action and storylines to real world events from history, she is able to draw out a universal set of themes and ideas. Taking the action itself onto a broader scope, the world becomes almost a tool for the writer to paint her ideas across. This is how it is with so much of the best fantasy novels, and here it really is no different as Kurtz ranks among some of the best out there. Not only that, but again she never gets lost within her own world, keeping track at all times of her end goal. Following on in chronological order from the first, there are also some characters from the original, but it focuses itself on a new set of events and people. This allows the story to move forward, providing a fresh perspective on the world, thus broadening its scope too. With more characters it also manages to bring about a new set of events, complete with the own set of goals and ambitions.

With this book happening in the month of March, 1121, the action is taking place only a few months after the first. Facing the wrath of the Holy Church, the characters of Duncan McLain and Alaric Morgan must deal with this new and terrifying threat. Looking to take power, the church are threatening the certain members of the current council, as they seek to remove their powers. Will the get their wish? How will they stop this new threat and keep the peace? What will become of them all as they face a potential Deryni checkmate?

The Deryni Universe Series

With a whole selection of different series in this overall franchise, the Deryni Universe is definitely a massive one. Working on it for a great many years, Kurtz has really built herself a mini-empire here with this particular collection of books. Each series charts different periods in the history of this universe and its people, something which really brings it to life. Bringing out five separate series since 1970, each one is composed of around roughly three books in total. There is also a stand-alone, thus creating one of the most well established epic fantasies of it’s time, which is just as true today as it ever was. As readers continue to find it and discover its unique world, there will always be an audience for the Deryni Universe.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Deryni Universe

Leave a Reply