Judgment on Janus

~ 1st Novel in the Janus Series by Andre Norton

Click on image for slideshow

of cover-art for

Judgment On Janus

 

 

Synopsis ~

Write-up from an old Amazon.com posting ~

Naill Renfro is working as a slave laborer for the farm colonizers of Janus when he discovers a forbidden treasury which lures him into the planet’s towering forest. There Naill is mysteriously transformed into the tree dweller Ayyar of Iftcan and fights a strange fight to regenerate the ancient race. Brought to life through his metamorphosis, he could remember only faintly his life as Naill Renfro, and could barely comprehend the race he’d become part of. All he knew was what the Iftin allowed him to sense - and what he sensed was more terrifying than anything he’d ever known.

 

Write-up from the front flap of 1963 HC ~

When Niall Renfro arrived on the pioneer planet Janus, he found it almost wholly forested with magnificent towering trees, surrounding small garths cleared by the recent settlers. Superstitious and fanatical, the settlers were convinced that "treasures" occasionally turned up in the fields were cursed, for those who touched them fell ill with the Green Sick and were therefore abandoned in the forest.
Niall believed the treasures might be signs of an earlier race on Janus that had died out. And when he unexpectedly discovered a treasure trove -- festinating artifacts shimmering with jeweled light -- he felt a compulsion to keep one. Caught and punished for this, Naill remembered nothing more until he awoke alone in the forest, burning with fever, his head swirling with unknown names and memories. His image, reflected in a pool, confirmed a terrifying suspicion: he had assumed the identity of another being! He was now Ayyar of the nearly extinct Iftin race, whose skin matched the forest green, whose instincts were perfectly attuned to his habitat, and who loathed the settlers, the forest destroyers.
Determined to seek others of his kind to find the why of his baffling identity, Niall-Ayyer was caught up in a life-and-death struggle between good and evil. This is one of Andre Norton's most superbly imagined novels, one that will be specially welcomed by admires of the author's Catseye, Star Guard and other science-fiction stories.

 

Write-up from the back of the ACE paperback editions ~

Naill Renfro is working as a slave laborer for the farm colonizers of Janus when he discovers a forbidden treasury which lures him into the planet’s towering forest. There Naill is mysteriously transformed into the tree dweller Ayyar of Iftcan and fights a strange fight to regenerate the ancient race…
“As much fantasy as science-fiction, the story will please readers who can appreciate the author’s narrative skill and ability to create a vivid imaginary world.” – American Library Association

 

Write-up from the back of the Fawcett paperback edition ~

“Word-rich invention of enchantment…. This fantasy delightfully disorients the reader from the known and captivates with him with songlike weaving of the unknown.” – The Horn Book
“Good, Mysterious, and Very Imaginative.” – Cleveland Press

Naill Renfro
Space-born and damned by the savages of war to the most unendurable of all thralldoms, he knew that life in bondage on Janus would be the worst of a galaxy of hells. What he didn’t know was that freedom on Janus could be the same. Then he unwittingly committed the ultimate sin…
Ayyar, the sword Bearer
Brought to life through a monstrous metamorphosis, he could remember only faintly the life as Naill Renfro, and could barely comprehend the race he’d become part of. All he knew was what the Iftin allowed him to sense – and what he sensed was more terrifying than anything he’d ever known…

 

Write-up from the back of the Ballantine Del Rey paperback edition ~

Deadly Treasure
Naill Renfro had been warned by his masters about the mysterious treasures sometimes found at the edge of the dense jungle, but he couldn’t help secreting just one bright bauble that might buy his freedom.
The price of his folly was greater than he could have imagined, for he was exiled to the forest after catching the deadly Green Sick. But instead of dying, he found himself transformed into one of the green-skinned forest monsters that terrorized the colonist. Changed not only in body, but in mind as well, he was gradually becoming Ayyar, the Sword Bearer, warrior if the Iftin race.
But Naill/Ayyar was being drawn against his will toward the White Forest, home of the nameless evil of That Which Abides. Somehow, he had to use both human and alien memories to find a way to combat the ancient horror—or the Iftin civilization would be destroyed forever!
“Norton’s plot and place are dazzling, her settings wondrous… and her imagination in full gear.” – Library Journal

 

Write ups from fans ~

As with Beastmaster/Lord of Thunder, Judgment on Janus is really just half of a longer book. It has one of the most interesting plot devices I have ever seen. If anyone knows of anything similar either before or after these two books, please let me know.
Judgment, like Catseye, starts out in the Dipple on Korwar. Dipple resident Naill Renfro, the last of a ship of Free Traders, in order to ease his dying mother's passing, sells himself as a laborer bound for the planet Janus.
He is bought by member of a severely strict religious sect, to be used clearing land for crops. He finds a "sinful" cache of sparkly jewelry and catches the dreaded "green sick". This ailment transforms him into a member of a long-lost native race, the Ift. To the farmers, he is a monster to be hunted down and destroyed Not only is he no longer human, he also has some memories of a long -dead Iftin warrior--Ayyar. These memories help him survive in a hostile environment. He watches a girl named Ashla find another cache and is there to help her understand her transformation into Illylle, an Iftin woman of Power. Not only do they have to keep away from humans (who they find revolting), there is an ancient ENEMY of the Ift stirring. The nature of THAT WHICH ABIDES (nothing to do with the Great Lebowski) is a mystery, but these changeling Ifts know IT is the ultimate evil. Victory on Janus picks up right where Judgment leaves off. ~ PG

 

1963’s Judgment on Janus returns to the Dipple, that oubliette for refugees. Life in the Dipple is so wretched and horrible that young Naill Renfro considers it only sensible to sell himself as a contract labourer—a slave—so he can earn enough money to buy his dying mother a fatal overdose of drugs. Naill can do nothing to make her life in the Dipple bearable; dreaming herself to death is the only escape possible for his mother.
Naill at least manages to trade the Dipple for a new life on Janus, although given what he finds on that…. ~ JN
Read More…

 

Various reviews ~ For more info and other listings see Articles about Andre

1964 by P. Schuyler Miller in Analog Science Fact -> Science Fiction, April
1964 by Charles Platt in Vector #29
1965 by James Colvin in New Worlds #146, January
2015 by James Nicoll, April, 24

 

trillium          medievil-dragon-tribal-line-black-white-tina-barnash          trillium          medievil-dragon-tribal-line-black-white-tina-barnash          trillium

 

Bibliography of English Editions ~

  • (1963) Published by Harcourt Brace, HC, LCCN 63016035, $3.50, 220pg ~ cover by Richard Powers {Orange Cloth Boards}
  • (1963) Published by Longmans, HC, $4.25, 220pg ~ Canadian printing ~ cover by Richard Powers
  • (1964) Published by Gollancz, HC, 0-575-00107-0, £ 13s6p (162p), 224pg ~ UK printing ~ cover by Alan Breese {Orange Cloth Boards}
  • (1964) Published by ACE, PB, # F-308, $0.40, 190pg, #41550 1969 $0.50 190pg ~ covers by Alex Schomburg ~ #41551 1972 $0.75 189pg, #41552 1974 $0.95 189pg ~ #41553 1975 $1.25, 189pg ~ covers by Dean Ellis  NOTE: On 1970s ACE printings the title is spelled “Judgement”
  • (1979) Published by Fawcett, PB, 0-449-24214-5, $1.95 ~ cover by Ken Barr
  • (1987) Published by Ballantine Del Rey, PB, 0-345-34365-4, $2.95, 255pg ~ cover by Laurence Schwinger
  • Janus (2002) Published by BAEN, TP, 0-743-43553-2, LCCN 2002023223, $15.00, 387pg ~ cover by Larry Elmore ~ Omnibus containing Judgment on Janus (1963) & Victory on Janus (1966)           

 

trillium          medievil-dragon-tribal-line-black-white-tina-barnash          trillium          medievil-dragon-tribal-line-black-white-tina-barnash          trillium

 

Non-English Editions ~

  • (1992) Combined with "Forerunner Foray", "Garan the Eternal"" and "Victory on Janus" ~ Published in Novosibirsk, by EYA, 5-872-16019-4, HC, 464pg ~ Russian title Гаран вечный [Garan Eternal]
  • (1992) Combined with "Slavers of Space" by John Brunner, "Blood Bank" by Walter Miller, "The Dream Master" by Roger Zelazny and seven stories by Keith Laumer ~ Published in Moscow, by Russiko, 5-844-20065-9, HC, 560pg ~ translation by N. Nesmelova ~ cover by Kim Marat ~ Russian title Работорговцы космоса [Slavers of Space]
  • (1992) Combined with "Star Gate" translation by Kreines and "Victory on Janus" translation by L. Morgan ~ Published in Moscow, and Ekaterinburg, by Verb, 5-731-20009-2, HC, 432pg ~ "Judgement on Janus" translation by L. Morgan ~ Russian title Звездные врата. Суд на Янусе. Победа на Янусе.
  • (1992) Combined with "Victory on Janus" translation by L. Morgun and "Secret of the Lost Race" translation by KV Prilipko ~ Published in Zelenograd, by Zelenogradskaya Books, 5-863-14009-7, HC, 416pg ~ "Judgement on Janus" translation by L. Morgun ~ Russian title Янус [Janus]
  • (1994) Combined with "Victory on Janus" and "Secret of the Lost Race" ~ Published in Zelenograd, by Zelenogradskaya Books, 5-863-14036-4, HC, 416pg ~ Russian title Победа на Янусе [Victory on Janus]
  • (2001) Combined with "Catseye" translation by Dmitry Arseniev, "Night of Masks" translation by AG probes and I. Golovschikov, and "Victory on Janus" translation by Oleg Kolesnikov ~ Published in Moscow, by Eksmo, 5-040-07031-1, HC, 480pg ~ "Judgment on Janus" translation by Oleg Kolesnikov ~ cover by Ogor Varavin ~ Russian title Победа на Янусе [Victory on Janus]
  • (2002) Combined with "Victory on Janus" ~ Published in Moscow, by Eksmo, 5-699-00714-8, HC, 384pg ~ translation by Oleg Kolesnikov ~ Russian title Победа на Янусе [Victory on Janus]
  • (2004) Combined with "Catseye" translation by Dmitry Arseniev, "Night of Masks" translation by AG probes and I. Golovschikova and "Victory on Janus" translation by Oleg Kolesnikov ~ Published in Moscow, by Eksmo and St. Petersburg, by Donino, 5-699-07079-6, HC, 608pg ~ "Judgement on Janus" translation by Oleg Kolesnikov ~ cover by Jim Burns ~ Russian title Космические бродяги [Space Tramp]
  • (2014) Combined with “Storm Over Warlock”, “Ordeal in Otherwhere”, “Catseye” & “Victory on Janus”, Published in Moscow by Eksmo, 9785699760862, HC, 800pgs ~ “Storm Over Warlock” translation by Sergeeva, “Ordeal in Otherwhere” & “Catseye” translation by D. Arseniev, “Judgment on Janus” & “Victory on Janus” translation by O. Kolesnikova ~ cover art by A. Dubovik ~ series: All Norton ~ Russian title Колдовской мир [Victory on Janus]


 

View the original contract

View the 1978 Ace Contract

View the 2004 Russian contract 

 

 

 

ACE Frontspiece

judgment.on.janus.frontspiece


 

<P          list          N>

 

trillium          medievil-dragon-tribal-line-black-white-tina-barnash          trillium          medievil-dragon-tribal-line-black-white-tina-barnash          trillium