Ann Leckie's Ancillary novels broke ground and swept up awards. Naturally, her fourth novel would have nothing to do with that universe. Instead, we are presented with a fantasy. But Leckie being Leckie, this is not an expected, cookie-cutter fantasy, but a work of subtle explorations concerning the workings of gods and humans in an ancient time. The power struggles, while familiar, take unexpected turns, and the portrayal of the gods are refreshingly distinct. These gods have limits, entropy and the conservation of energy clearly apply, and motives are refreshingly Other. The world in which they operate and the people involved possess the weight of reality in their imagining. The Raven Tower is a trip through a past might-have-been and according to a set of conditions seldom considered in popular fantasy. Well-realized and thoroughly enjoyable.
Gods meddle in the fates of men, men play with the fates of gods, and a pretender must be cast down from the throne in this masterful first fantasy novel from Ann Leckie, New York Times bestselling author and winner of the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Awards.
"It's a delight to read something so different, so wonderful and strange."-Patrick Rothfuss
"Absolutely wonderful...utterly brilliant."-The New York Times Book Review
For centuries, the kingdom of Iraden has been protected by the god known as the Raven.
He watches over his territory from atop a tower in the powerful port of Vastai. His will is enacted through the Raven's Lease, a human ruler chosen by the god himself. His magic is sustained by the blood sacrifice that every Lease must offer. And under the Raven's watch, the city flourishes.
But the Raven's tower holds a secret. Its foundations conceal a dark history that has been waiting to reveal itself...and to set in motion a chain of events that could destroy Iraden forever.
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About the Author
Ann Leckie is the author of the Hugo, Nebula, Arthur C. Clarke, and British Science Fiction Award-winning novel Ancillary Justice, and its Locus Award-winning sequel Ancillary Sword. She has also published short stories in Subterranean Magazine, Strange Horizons, and Realms of Fantasy. Her story "Hesperia and Glory" was reprinted in Science Fiction: The Best of the Year, 2007 Edition edited by Rich Horton.
Ann has worked as a waitress, a receptionist, a rodman on a land-surveying crew, and a recording engineer. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
"I've been reading fantasy my whole life. After all these years, it's a delight to read something so different, so wonderful and strange."—Patrick Rothfuss
"A powerhouse epic of humans and gods at war, deeply imagined and profoundly thrilling. There are echoes of Shakespeare and Le Guin in The Raven Tower, but its strange dark brilliance could only have come from Ann Leckie."—Lev Grossman
"Leckie's tale takes on a mythic, metafictional quality...and the story's elements weave into a stunning conclusion. This impressive piece of craftsmanship cements Leckie's place as a powerful voice in both SF and fantasy."— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Absolutely wonderful. The god's voice is mesmerizing, tender and careful....feels closer to the register of folk tale than epic, and is all the more riveting for that."—New York Times Book Review
"Leckie has an ear for language, an eye for character and a gift for creating new worlds and cultures... [her] examination of power, politics and governance is fascinating and well-conceived."—St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"Sharp, many layered, and, as always for Leckie, deeply intelligent."— Kirkus (starred review)
"Award-winner Leckie proves as adept at worldbuilding as ever-the setting and characters of The Raven Tower are as rich as any we encountered in Imperial Radch space-but it is the mode of narration that truly distinguishes her first novel-length foray into fantasy. Much like Hamlet, from which The Raven Tower draws clear inspiration, Leckie's is a story filled with complicated, very human people, as well as the forces that move around them, guiding them ever so slightly toward choices both good and bad."—B&N SciFi & Fantasy Blog
"The Raven Tower is an enormously compelling novel. It may draw inspiration from Hamlet, but...it reweaves the fabric of Shakespeare's play into cloth of a different color entirely. Leckie's worldbuilding is deep and thorough, showing us the edges of a broad, rich, complicated world, and her characters are fascinating."—Tor.com
"Leckie has created an enthralling and well-realized fantasy world, full of not only magic and gods but also characters representing a broad spectrum of gender and sexuality. Highly recommended for...anyone looking for exciting and boundary-pushing fantasy."— Booklist (starred review)
"The Raven Tower is a unique, intricate fantasy set in a fascinating world of gods who are at once formidable and vulnerable. Original and powerful -- I loved it. Highly recommended for fans of N. K. Jemisin or Guy Gavriel Kay."—Django Wexler
"A gripping story that's one part mystery, one part a new history of the world, The Raven Tower is an incredible fantasy, told by one of the most unique voices I've had the privilege of reading."—S. A. Chakraborty
"Earthsea's elegance meets Sanderson's clever magic in this talon-sharp saga of divinity and revenge. Ann Leckie is unstoppable."—Seth Dickinson