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   Shadow & Claw, by Gene Wolfe  
 
  Omnibus, first publication in October 1994
 
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    Buy Shadow & Claw by Gene Wolfe
     
     
       Additional Information  
     
      This is the first-person narrative of Severian, a lowly apprentice torturer blessed and cursed with a photographic memory, whose travels lead him through the marvels of far-future Urth, and who--as revealed near the beginning--eventually becomes his land's sole ruler or Autarch. On the surface it's a colorful story with all the classic ingredients: growing up, adventure, sex, betrayal, murder, exile, battle, monsters, and mysteries to be solved. (Only well into book 2 do we realize what saved Severian's life in chapter 1.) For lovers of literary allusions, they are plenty here: a Dickensian cemetery scene, a torture-engine from Kafka, a wonderful library out of Borges, and familiar fables changed by eons of retelling. Wolfe evokes a chilly sense of time's vastness, with an age-old, much-restored painting of a golden-visored "knight," really an astronaut standing on the moon, and an ancient citadel of metal towers, actually grounded spacecraft. Even the sun is senile and dying, and so Urth needs a new sun.

    The Book of the New Sun is almost heartbreakingly good, full of riches and subtleties that improve with each rereading. It is Gene Wolfe's masterpiece.

    Source: David Langford, Amazon.co.uk.

     
     
      Part of series  
     
     
  • Urth > Urth (1) - The Book of the New Sun

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      Related theme(s)  
     
     
  • Apprentices - Assistants
  • Children, Teens, Kids.
  • Far Futures
  • Monsters
  • Science Fiction Classics
  • Sex - Erotica - Sexuality

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