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Night's Master (Tales from the Flat Earth) Paperback – September 15, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Lush imagery, sensual language and erotic undertones age well in this reprinted classic-as complex, seductive, and daring now as when it first came out in 1978. The award-winning Lee (Tempting the Gods) weaves a colorful tapestry of words as she laces together eighteen tales of the Flat Earth, where dismissive gods regard humanity as a mistake and capricious demons toy with mortals to while away the centuries. Though the cast changes every few stories, Azhrarn, Prince of Demons and Lord of Darkness, remains a constant presence, affecting mortal lives both directly and indirectly. From adopting a human infant for his own inscrutable reasons, to bringing down an over-ambitious king and challenging the gods for the fate of the world, Azhrarn's mark on the world stretches over the centuries and leaves no one untouched by the end. Themes of love and hate, truth and lies, beauty and ugliness are intertwined against a mythic backdrop that borrows adeptly from fairy tales and folklore while drawing inspiration from Oscar Wilde and the Arabian Nights. Eschewing a conventional plotline in favor of short stories sharing common elements and overlapping characters, this fantasy continues to push boundaries and challenge expectations. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

Praise for the Flat Earth:

"Lee has craftsmanship...style, wit, delicacy, strength, and depth of imagination and a sure touch for words.... Night's Master is like a treasure chest spilled open with cascading dreams of silk, jewels, demon horses, perfumes, spices, tapestries, and (most previous of all) a sense of wonder." —The British Fantasy Society Bulletin

“A strange fin de siècle eroticism pervades these finely felt and well-written tales. They possess a certain raw power that derives from a simplicity recalling myth and legend.” —Publishers Weekly

"A satisfying fantasy, and one which shows real talent at work. It could easily become a cult item. Recommended." —Library Journal

"The style is complex and fascinating, the plotting and interweaving of characters and action meticulously worked out and invariably entertaining." —SF Chronicle

"Here we have storytelling at its best and fantasy in its purest and strongest essence. Tanith Lee portrays with a masterful hand an amazing, ancient world." —SFSite --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Tales from the Flat Earth
  • Paperback: 246 pages
  • Publisher: TaLeKa (September 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607620448
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607620440
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #549,284 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Tanith Lee weaves tales of demons and mortals in ways that are familiar, yet with such singular and unexpected twists that even the most well-read fan of this genre will find her work refreshing. The entire Flat Earth series is at once terrible and wonderful. What is it like to be the Prince of Demons? What would happen if a mortal suddenly was given immortality? What would the Prince of Darkness do if suddenly he had no humans to torment, much as he might despise them? All these are questions that Lee is not afraid to pose through her characters from commoners to kings; from demons to gods so strange we can scarce comprehend them. With powers of description that are as evocative as Joseph Conrad's, and with the ability to paint characters in the style of a Charles Dickens, she spins a tapestry of events that binds these series of self-standing tales into a marvelous whole. Is it any wonder I highly recommend her work? Get all five of the Flat Earth series. If you are like me, you will find yourself reading them time and again.
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Format: Hardcover
Fantasy, ultimately, depends on description to carry it. The more alien the landscapes and psychologies an author wishes to describe, the more she must rely on her style and vocabulary to carry it off.

-Night's Master- kicks off the Flat Earth series, about a richly imagined, glittering, world of cruel and proud daemons. What ultimately carries off the story of Azhrarn is Tanith Lee's strong prose style. You can tell that she must have been the victim of a classical education.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I use this novel as a textbook in a course called "Sympathy for the Devil" (4 fantasy novels, all by women, featuring supernatural male protagonists who are all defined as "devils" in some sense). This book is actually more of a collection of interrelated stories than a novel. It is meant to seem both ancient and timeless, and has an "Arabian Nights" feel. Every story includes a lesson, and the climax of the plot is both logical and unexpected. Tanith Lee's jewelled language perfectly suits the subject-matter. There are 2 versions that I know of: an out-of-print paperback from DAW Books, and a larger, more expensive paperback from Norilana Books, with a cover designed by the author's artist husband. (The Norilana book is more attractive, but the DAW cover is delightfully cheesy.)
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Night's Master was my first introduction to Tanith Lee nearly ten years ago and ever since I have been addicted to her work. Her writing is beautiful and seductive filled with lush imagery and descriptions that will have you longing to enter the pages of her novels. This is not your typical "fantasy" novel. It is powerful and moving and unlike anything else I have ever read. Of all of Tanith Lee's books, I would recommend the Flat Earth series and The Silver Metal Lover as the best. They never fail to transport me to another world, and really isn't that the great joy of reading novels?
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Once in a very great while, we encounter a perfect book. Tanith Lee's NIGHT'S MASTER is just such a work. I won't say "I wish I could give it ten stars" because in truth, Lee's collection of interwoven short stories rises well above the conventional star system. Flat Earth is a place where imagination is completely set free. Engaging, passionate, sensual, and cruel; with surprising and fulfilling moments of true heroism. Told with prose that reads like poetry. I could keep raving about it, but really, YOU should be reading the story instead. Get a copy of this book. You won't regret it.
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Format: Hardcover
...and you have the strange feeling that you are reading something that is a dream, and yet it is so magical and fairytalish, but in a dark and twisted way.
In this book we meet the Prince of Demons, Azhrarn, who plots and schemes to his own dark ends. He is an evil, selfish antagonist, and yet Sivesh, his adopted son is the 'good guy', falls prey to his evilness and in the end...
The book is written like a myth, with strange and wonderful things like silver collars woven of tears, and demon horses that ride the night...
Enjoy it!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this first time in french in high shcool in the late 1990's and i fell into a world ten times wonderland, ten times Lotr! It's unique, it's fantastic and it's like looking at an ancient richly embroderied tapestry. If you step back, you see one complex coherent fluid tale take place. If you step closer, you see a million of little stories being lived and toled like only a master of such story telling can deliver the product. The imagery is rich, the story is rich, the characteres are attaching. I find myself 15 years later remembering their names, their adventures, their stories.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
GOD, This Book Was GREAT!!!! This was the first book I had ever read by Tanith Lee, now I am a devoted fan. I never knew fantasy could be so good. I had always been a fan of horror but after reading this book I got addicted to fantasy, horror and fantasy horror. This story (you have to excuse me because I have 4 children and evrything I read them is a story and I read alot) made me feel differently about reading fantasy. I read alot, and since "Nights Master" I've read alot more. I loved this book. It made me envious of the character that was the participant in this story. I was glad that I had ordered the whole set of "Tales From The Flat Earth " at once. I don't think I could have waited the 4 to 6 weeks in between for delivery. If you are a true fantasy nut, like I am now read "Night's Master" you won't regret it.
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