In this debut collection from the critically acclaimed author of "Dreams of the Compass Rose," 19 stories distill myth and philosophy, eroticism and ascetic purity from an ancient multi-ethnic well.
Sixteen cautionary, sensual stories of love, reversal and revenge upend fairy tale conventions in Nazarian's lush collection (after 2003's Lords of Rainbow). Some pieces retell classic stories: "Absolute Receptiveness, the Princess, and the Pea" compellingly subverts the clich? of the tender princess into a disturbing rape fantasy. "Beauty and His Beast" recasts the beast as an ugly but perceptive princess. Other stories approach myth. In "Sun, in Its Copper Season," the avatar of the sun falls in love with the man who brings the four seasons, and in "Lore of Rainbow," a wife seeks her missing husband, only to discover that he is the personification of a color. Adventure stories skirt the edges of the expected: in "The Slaying of Winter," a woman seeks revenge on a god for her family's destruction, only to find forgiveness; and in the near-future "Rossia Moya," a woman and Russia itself both rediscover their heritage. Sumptuous detail, twisty plots and surprising endings lift these extravagant tales. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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April 01, 2009
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