I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Night's Master by Tanith Lee
Series: Tales from the Flat Earth #1
Published: June 7, 2016 by DAW
Source: the publisher
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Night’s Master by Tanith Lee is a book with a rather unique setting. It’s the first in a series called Tales from the Flat Earth, which imagines a world that is not round, but flat. The gods live in the heavens, the humans on the earth, and the demons in the underworld. The gods created the humans, but then got bored with them and forgot about them. The humans live their lives, as humans do. And the demons sometimes get bored with the underworld and decide to meddle in the world above them, bringing mischief and mayhem to the mankind.
Night’s Master isn’t so much a traditional novel as a series of short stories that are all tied together to tell one larger story. The book revolves around the ruler of the demons, Azhrarn, known as Night’s Master, and his interactions with mankind. The book starts off with Azhrarn adopting an orphan boy from earth. The boy worships Azhrarn, and when he comes of age, the two begin a relationship. But when the boy begins to long for the sun and the human world, Azhrarn gets jealous, and he leads him to his doom. That one act has a ripple effect, leading to more tales of greed, lust, death, and destruction.
Tanith Lee is a master of building atmosphere. The world she creates is lush, decadent, and filled with sexual overtones. Her writing is gorgeous, and the glimpses that you see of the world make you feel like it is a fully fleshed place with secrets and mysteries and complexity. There’s a sense of tragedy, but the beautiful kind of tragedy that happens when humans and immortals interact with each other. When you are fortunate or unfortunate enough to capture Azhrarn’s attention, you are doomed, captured in a storybook ending. The whole book has the feeling of Greek mythology, but in an imaginary world that isn’t quite Greek.
I’m really glad that Daw has been republishing Tanith Lee’s books and making them accessible to new generations of readers.