A Bed of Earth is a haunting journey to a parallel version of sixteenth-century Venice, where a fierce territorial rivalry between two noble families unearths a supernatural force from beneath the placid surface of the canals and rotting understructure of the city. The struggle between the two families for space on the Isle of the Dead, the overcrowded burial ground for generations of Venetian nobility, boils over and a fourteen-year-old girl is forced to pay the ultimate price. As the years pass on, parties complicit in her disappearance begin to suffer the consequences in a series of shocking deaths. A humble apprentice gravedigger is left to sort out the mysteries and subdue the ancient terror that threatens to destroy the entire republic.
The third book in Tanith Lee's compelling series based on alchemy and the elements focuses on the element of earth. It is a haunting journey to a parallel version of sixteenth-century Venice, where a fierce territorial rivalry between two noble families-the della Scorpias and the Barbarons-unearths a supernatural force from beneath the placid surface of the canals and rotting understructure of the city. The struggle between the two families for space on the Isle of the Dead, the overcrowded burial ground for generations of Venetian nobility, becomes more and more heated, and fourteen-year-old Meralda della Scorpia is forced to pay the ultimate price. But as the years pass on, parties complicit in her disappearance-from both houses-begin to suffer the consequences in a series of shocking deaths that could emanate from none other than a supernatural foe. As these bizarre events throw the city into a panic, a humble apprentice gravedigger is left to sort out the mysteries-an effort that will enable him to unearth the secrets of his own shadowy past. .
A mysterious woman awakens in the heart of a dormant volcano. She comes forth into a brutal ancient world transformed by genocidal pestilence, fierce beauty, and cultural devastation. She has no memory of herself, and she could be anyone--mortal woman, demoness lover, last living heir to a long-gone race, or a goddess of destruction. Compelled by the terrifying Karrakaz to search for the mysterious Jade that is the answer to her secret self, she embarks on a journey of timeless wonder.Rediscover this realm of brilliant cruel beauty and seductive immortal ruins, of savage war and grand conquest, of falling stars and silver gods.This 40th anniversary edition of legendary fantastist Tanith Lee's debut novel includes its original introduction by Marion Zimmer Bradley.
I am Karrakaz, the Soulless One, who sprang from the evil of your race . . . There is no escape from Karrakaz now . . . "The steps beyond the altar lead upward and out into the world. But if you go, you are cursed, and carry a curse with you; there will be no happiness. The civilization which bred you is dead uncountable years. "Your palaces are in ruins. "The lizards sun themselves in the dried- up fountains and the fallen courts. "And you--I will show you to yourself. Recollect, you should have been powerful, a magician who ruled the elements, the stars, the seas, the deep fires of the earth. All things might have done your bidding. The power of flight was yours, the chameleon art, the art of invisibility--and beauty. "Let me show you what you are."
In a world dedicated to pleasure, one young rebel sets out on a forbidden quest--. Published for the first time in a single volume, Tanith Lee's duet of novels set in a hedonistic Utopia are as riveting and revolutionary as they were when they first appeared two decades ago. It's a perfect existence, a world in which no pleasure is off-limits, no risk is too dangerous, and no responsibilities can cramp your style. Not if you're Jang: a caste of libertine teenagers in the city of Four BEE. But when you're expected to make trouble--when you can kill yourself on a whim and return in another body, when you're encouraged to change genders at will and experience whatever you desire--you've got no reason to rebel. . . until making love and raising hell, daring death and running wild just leave you cold and empty. Ravenous for true adventures of the mind and body, desperate to find some meaning, one restless spirit finally bucks the system--and by shattering the rules, strikes at the very heart of a soulless society. . . .
From the most ancient of days, the Beast has passed through the seed of generations, preying on the unlucky, the unwary and the unchaste, its appetite ravenous and eternal. A haunted house and a ghostly woman are the instruments that release an ancient curse upon the forgotten city of Paradys. As a savage, unholy beast prowls the city's streets, a young student seeks to uncover the secrets that will lead to his salvation. Lee infuses this dark tale, the second volume in the series, with a dreamlike quality that hovers, like the world in The Book of the Damned, on the border of reality.
In a city imbued with dark fantasy and gothic horror, an ancient curse transforms the lives of all it touches The city known by three names--Paradys, Paradise, and Paradis--conceals many strange stories. In the second volume of the Secret Books of Paradys, young scholar Raoulin has just moved to Paradys to study at the university. He lodges at the once noble, now decrepit House d'Uscaret, a place he knows is haunted from the moment he arrives. There, Raoulin is frequented by the mysterious and beautiful phantom of a young bride with wide-set emerald eyes, and as he is drawn toward her, he realizes that his every action skirts the border of reality and dream. Soon, the voluptuous ghost has infected him with the curse of the Beast--a horrific amalgam of bird, lizard, and man that has preyed on the city's inhabitants for centuries. Past and present are irrevocably intertwined in this horrifyingly lush tome, in which author Tanith Lee plunges the reader into the lore and monstrosities of an alternate Paris: the lurid and infamous Paradys.
A haunted house and a ghostly woman are the instruments that release an ancient curse upon the forgotten city of Paradys. As a savage, unholy beast prowls the city's streets, a young student seeks to uncover the secrets that will lead to his salvation. Lee infuses this dark tale with a dreamlike quality that hovers, like the world she has created (also seen in The Book of the Damned), on the border of reality.
Popular fantasy author Tanith Lee is at her Gothic, haunting best, creating an atmosphere charged with horror, eroticism, and decadence. In this first volume of The Secret Books of Paradys, Lee begins the search for a demonic creature seemingly impervious to sword, conjuring, or prayer. Readers won't want to miss number two in the series, The Book of the Beast.
Eroticism and gothic horror mingle in the enchanted city of Paradys, where no one remains unchangedThe Book of the Damned introduces the city of Paradys, also known as Paradise, or Paradis. In fact, it is three cities, all places of luxury and decay, twisted love and chilling magic, intertwined by an unknown enchantment. In "Stained with Crimson," the first tale of Paradys's inhabitants, poet Andre St Jean encounters a mysterious man who thrusts upon him a ruby ring engraved with an Egyptian beetle. Advised by friends that the ring belongs to the most beautiful woman in Paradys--the pale and ebony-eyed Antonina von Aaron--Andre attends a salon to return it to her. Instead, he becomes entangled in a vampiric game of predator and prey, gender transformation, and bloody nightmares. Dread imbues the second tale, "Malice in Saffron." After young Jehanine is raped by her stepfather, she runs away to Paradys to find her stepbrother Pierre. But the once devoted Pierre accuses Jehanine of lying and casts her out into the inhospitable streets. The desperate girl finds refuge in a nunnery and tries to live in God's light. But when dusk falls, she transforms into her male alter ego, Jehan, and prowls the alleys with murderous, Devil-worshipping thugs. "Empire of Azure," the final exploration of Paradys's dangerous streets, recounts the investigations of writer Anna Sanjeanne, who receives a strange note from a mysterious man: "In a week or less, I shall be dead." On the predicted date Anna follows the stranger's trail. A chain of clues--a shattered window, a corpse hanging from a rope, a leather-bound diary, and a portrait of an unknown woman--soon lead the young journalist toward a sinister and ancient force. Told with lush fantastical prose and an acute aesthetic sense, The Book of the Damned ventures into a morbid and disquieting parallel world, exploring the recesses of identity, gender, and sexual transgression that lie within.
Three bizarre, spellbinding novellas comprise the first volume of this series. "Stained with Crimson" is an erotic, horror-filled vampire tale. In "Malice in Saffron," a young girl exacts vengeance against men as a result of being brutally raped, but then tells of her eventual redemption and horrible self-sacrifice. "Empires of Azure" is a grim tale of death and sorcery. The unifying element is the setting: the magical French city of Paradys during the medieval era. Lee's superb imagination and her creative use of language to convey mood has generated three fantastic tales.
In The Book of the Dead, the dark atmosphere is charged with hedonism, sexuality and death in eight interlocking short stories. The ambiance of fin de siecle France imbues these eight gothic tales in the third volume in Lee's Secret Books of Paradys tetralogy, tracing the tortured lives once led by those buried in the crypts and cemeteries of the mythical (or forgotten) city of Paradys. "The Weasel Bride" twists a folktale about a man who marries an enchanted weasel and dies of her bite into an account of a young husband who kills his beloved bride on their wedding night and takes her dreadful secret to the gallows. The artist in "The Glass Dagger," who normally saves her emotion for her art, is consumed by jealous rage and turns to supernatural revenge when a jaded aristocrat tries an old stratagem to win her love. In "The Moon Is a Mask" a drudge who creates a world of beauty in her garret room steals to buy a mask that turns her into a vampire owl. The miasma of corruption and death, combined with vivid and at times elegiac writing will engross readers who fancy this dark shade of fantasy writing.
A macabre dark fantasy of enchantment, misfortune, corruption, and death The unnerving third volume of the Secret Books of Paradys begins with a fable of two doomed weddings. In "The Weasel Bride," a white weasel transforms into a fair maiden under the light of a full moon. A local trapper releases the animal from its curse by marrying it, but on their wedding day, the weasel inflicts the groom with a fatal wound. This tale flows into the story of a bride who is brutally strangled in the nuptial bed after giving her husband a small nibble on the hand. Decades later, his motive comes to light when the woman's unearthed tomb reveals a ghastly truth. In the second narrative, "The Nightmare's Tale," Jean de St. Jean is an orphan of the Revolution who grows up with a deep yearning for revenge. Determined to kill the man responsible for his parents' death, he sets off for the colonial island of Black Haissa. But he arrives on distant shores only to find that his adversary is already dead and that the isle is a country of wild nightmares, supernatural possession, and petrifying beasts. And in "Beautiful Lady," small, shabby Julie d'Is lives in a tiny apartment near Temple Church that no one ever visits. Some refer to Julie as Bella Donna, but she has other nicknames--for wherever she goes, the Grim Reaper follows close behind. Five additional fantasies entrance the reader with the gothic and tortured plights of the citizens of Paradys--a mythic city where vampire owls, occult conjurors, and femmes fatales abound.
In the final volume of the Paradys series, Tanith Lee completes this thrillingly dark and decadent alternate world: the imagined city of Paradys. In The Book of the Mad, a seductive nightmare unfolds in three parallel versions of the city--Paradis, Paradys and Paradise. Connected by a labyrinth of ice whose dangers are amplified by the will and emotion of its lunatic travelers, these cities provide the stage for a drama of mythical proportions, setting up a darkly dazzling finish to The Secret Books of Paradys.
A surreal gothic fantasy of three nefarious cities: Paradise, Paradis, and Paradys Welcome to Paradise, where the sun hasn't shone for years and a callous, ritual-obsessed populace roams the decayed metropolis enshrouded in fog. The citizens are unhinged, murder and incest are praised, and madness reigns. Only a pair of twins, Felion and Smara, remains sane. But their sole hope of escaping the city is a mysterious ice labyrinth connecting parallel worlds. Thus begins the sinister finale to the Secret Books of Paradys, in which three alternate versions of one city--Paradise, Paradis, and Paradys--are the layered canvas upon which twisted narratives unfold. In Paradis, Leocadia, a striking and eccentric painter, lives a hedonistic and unremorseful life. She is the sole heir to her uncle's fortune, but the ease of life this affords her becomes a dizzying burden when her lover is murdered and doctors lock her up in an asylum called the Residence. Do the medics want to cure her madness--or do they wish to drive her insane? Meanwhile, in Paradys, fifteen-year-old Hilde is a pale and perfect child with milk-white skin, ginger hair, and an obedient and loving countenance. But Hilde has a secret nocturnal life, budding sexuality, and lustful heart that becomes irrevocably engorged at the sight of a handsome actor with the face of a priest. Written in author Tanith Lee's signature style, The Book of the Mad breaks taboos, relishes horror, and conjures the perverse.
The culmination of Lee's horror-fantasy tetralogy (The Book of the Dead, 1992, etc.). The previous entries are composed of related stories, but this one, though elliptically structured, forms a novel in its own right. In the perpetually mist-shrouded, magical city of Paradise live the twins Felion and Smara, murderers who consider themselves the city's sole sane inhabitants. They hold the keys to a magic labyrinth of ice whose mercurial doorways give entry to an alternate city--scrubbed, bright, high-tech, laid-back Paradis. Here, hard-drinking visionary painter Leocardia's grand house and fortune were willed to her by the same mysterious uncle who bequeathed the labyrinth to Felion and Smara. A third city, Paradys, lies in Paradis's stark Victorian past; here, beautiful, impressionable adolescent Hilde falls for a narcissistic actor, is raped by him, suffers a breakdown, and is consigned to an asylum where the depraved attendants routinely torment the inmates. Slowly, logically, inevitably, the lives and fates of Felion and Smara, Leocardia, and Hilde converge, with astonishing consequences. Beautifully woven, with fascinating characters in a compelling narrative, brilliantly set forth in Lee's spare, firm, spiky prose. Sheer enchantment.
An epic fantasy adventure of wild creatures, enchanted landscapes, and noble destinies In a land of unending winter, the High Magus Thryfe travels with haste to the city of Ruk Kar to warn Vuldir, King Accessorate, of a growing force of envy and darkness. One of Vuldir's daughters, the seventeen-year-old Saphay, is to wed the Jafn chieftain Athluan, but Thryfe foresees that the marriage will lead to the destruction of all the Ruk kings, their lineage, and their people. Disregarding the magician's ominous words, Saphay sets off toward the East and her betrothed--only to meet disaster. Athluan, Saphay's husband-to-be, hears rumors of a blond maiden in royal clothes entombed in a towering pyramid of ice. It is Saphay, and she is alive. The royal wedding ensues and soon--perhaps too soon--Saphay becomes pregnant. As time goes on, the son she births will show signs of a divine and heroic destiny.
In the world of the paranormal, the imagination reigns supreme. Populated by mysterious supernatural beings, mythic creatures and mortals possessing extraordinary powers, the ten enthralling fantasies in this spellbinding collection will transport you to the dark and dazzling realm of ghosts and shapeshifters, werewolves and witches, vampires and demons. Prepare to be mesmerized and beguiled by the seductive power of these dark and sensual immortals as they do battle against evil and long for love and redemption. Bundle includes: Wild Thing by Julie Kenner, Touch Me by Susan Kearney, Surrender by Julie Leto, Kiss of the Wolf by Susan Krinard, Shadow Kissing by Tanith Lee, by Evelyn Vaughn, Soul of the Wolf by Karen Whiddon, Forever Mine by Linda Winstead Jones, Her Best Enemy by Maggie Shayne and Dancers in the Dark by Charlaine Harris.
Delirium's Mistress is the fourth book of the stunning arabesque high fantasy series Tales from the Flat Earth, which, in the manner of The One Thousand and One Nights, portrays an ancient world in mythic grandeur via connected tales.<P><P> Long time ago when the Earth was Flat, beautiful indifferent Gods lived in the airy Upperearth realm above, curious passionate demons lived in the exotic Underearth realm below, and mortals were relegated to exist in the middle.<P> She is the neglected daughter of Azhrarn, Demon Lord of Darkness, and she has many names -- Soveh, Azhriaz, Sovaz, Atmeh. Half demon, half mortal, she is Moon's Fire, vulnerable child, vengeful sorceress, terrifying Goddess of a wondrous city of cruel delirium that spans thirteen kingdoms, and a humble priestess of life's true wisdom. When her lover, Chuz, Prince Madness himself, is taken from her, she who is Daughter of Wickedness and Delirium's Mistress finds herself on a journey spanning an eternity of lives, in her search for love and redemption, and the ultimate truth of humanity, Godhood, and self.<P> Come within this ancient world of brilliant darkness and beauty, of glittering palaces and wondrous elegant beings, of cruel passions and undying love.<P> Discover the exotic wonder that is the Flat Earth.
Around the world, the dragon has been reborn in modern fantasy fiction. The classic winged fire-breathing reptiles often associated with evil (they do despoil villages and demand virgin sacrifices, after all) tend nowadays to be more kindly disposed to humanity, sometimes aloofly offering magical wisdom, sometimes actively involving themselves in human lives, whether as a servant or friend. In this volume, originally compiled exclusively for the members of the Science Fiction Book Club and not available in stores, editor Marvin Kaye has skillfully gathered brand- new contributions to the hoard of dragon lore by five top fantasy authors. Orson Scott Card-an expert at writing from a child's point of view, as evidenced in his bestselling Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow-offers a gothic yarn "In the Dragon's House" set in contemporary suburbia. Card tells about the mysterious dragon that lives in the wiring of an old house, palpable only to a young boy who in dreams shares its body and feels its true size and power. But what does it really want? Mercedes Lackey, prolific author of the Valdemar saga, writes of a slave boy who is chosen to care for a warrior's dragon. Vetch (and the reader) will learn much about dragon behavior . . . and this special dragon's secrets may be the key to his freedom. (Lackey was so taken by young Vetch that she expanded his adventures into a full-length novel with the same name as this novella-"Joust.") Tanith Lee is no stranger to dragons, which appeal quite often in her award-winning fantasies. The fable "Love in a Time of Dragons" is imbued with her signature atmosphere-Old World, moody, erotic-as a kitchen maid goes a-questing with a handsome champion to slay the local drakkor. But the tale takes a surprising twist. . . . Elizabeth Moon author of the popular Esmay Suiza and Heris Serrano series, takes a break from military science fiction to give us the tale of a young man forced by lies to flee his village . . . into an adventure of dwarfs and dragonspawn, of trust and wisdom, and, ultimately, "Judgment". Rounding off the collection is Michael Swanwick's "King Dragon", a strange amalgam of twentieth-century technology and faery magic, in which the award-winning author invokes a truly sinister and repellent creature-a being with the soul of a beast and the body of a machine- part metal, part devil... all merciless.
This book contains a collection of short pieces that effectively combine horror, science fiction, and often the elements of fantasy.
The Secret Books of Venusseries-each book woven around the alchemical elements of water, fire, earth, and air-begins with Faces Under Water, in which Tanith Lee immerses her readers in ancient Venetian canals and the secret terror that lies beneath. Lee's characters are immediately plunged into a fantastical world of sorcery, where horror and beauty mingle under breathless spells of enchantment and desire. In the hedonistic atmosphere of an eighteenth-century Venice Carnival, gaiety turns deadly when Furian Furiano happens upon a mask of Apollo floating in the murky waters of the canals. The mask hides a sinister art, and Furian finds himself trapped in a bizarre tangle of love, obsession, and evil, stumbling upon a macabre society of murderers. The beautiful but elusive Eurydiche holds the key to these murders and leads him further into a labyrinth of black magic and ancient alchemy. Why do secrets from Furian's past seem tied to the mysterious Eurydiche? In Tanith Lee's brilliantly imagined world of violence and terror, Furian must find a way to survive and stem the obsession driving him toward his hidden destiny.
The Secret Books of Venus series--each book woven around the alchemical elements of water, fire, earth, and air--begins with Faces Under Water, in which Tanith Lee immerses her readers in ancient Venetian canals and the secret terror that lies beneath. In the hedonistic atmosphere of an eighteenth-century Venice Carnival, gaiety turns deadly when Furian Furiano happens upon a mask of Apollo floating in the murky waters of the canals. The mask hides a sinister art, and Furian finds himself trapped in a bizarre tangle of love, obsession, and evil, stumbling upon a macabre society of murderers. The beautiful but elusive Eurydiche holds the key to these murders and leads him further into a labyrinth of black magic and ancient alchemy. Why do secrets from Furian's past seem tied to the mysterious Eurydiche? In Tanith Lee's brilliantly imagined world of violence and terror, Furian must find a way to survive and stem the obsession driving him toward his hidden destiny.
Here is the eagerly anticipated follow-up to the award-winning anthology Firebirds! Firebirds Rising takes readers from deep space to Faerie to just around the corner. It is full of magic, humor, adventure, and?best of all?the unexpected. The one thing readers can count on is marvelous writing. Firebirds Rising proves once again that Firebird is a gathering place for writers and readers of speculative fiction from teenage to adult, from the United States to Europe, Asia, and beyond.
The progeny of both god and mortal endures ceaseless war in a frozen hell in the second volume of the Lionwolf scrolls Lionwolf awakes on an unfamiliar shore under a cold blue sun, with no memories save the sensation of being in the deadly womb of the sea. Others join him, and they too cannot remember who they are or where they have been. Though Lionwolf can't remember his name--and, in fact, calls himself Nameless--he feels like he was once a king. The twenty-three men on the shore are his army, and soon they are called to duty. Eyeless blue hounds and snake-haired figures riding eight-legged horses lead the men toward a towering city where a bestial mouth trumpets a horrible battle cry. It is Shabatu, a Place of War. There, Lionwolf sets eyes on the king's lover, Chillel--the woman who was once Lionwolf's wife. Are Lionwolf and his men dead? And is Shabatu perhaps their hell?
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