Patricia A. McKillip: Ombria in Shadow

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Ombria in Shadow, the first of McKillip's books translated in Finnish, tells of Ombria, a city that's facing problems when its prince dies. The new prince is just five years old and the city is ruled by mysterious and frightening Domina Pearl. Pearl doesn't seem to have the city's best interests in her mind, she has her own motives.

Lydea, the prince's mistress is driven out of the palace to die in the streets. She doesn't, thanks to the interventions of Mag, a "waxling" servant of Faye, a strange witch inhabiting the shadowy underworld of Ombria. There's also the prince's bastard Ducon, who seems destined to power, but reluctant to accept his fate.

It's a wonderful story, quite unlike any other. I can easily recommend this to anybody who hates the standard fantasy dreck: Ombria in Shadow is something else. It's a hazy story, full of dreamy elements and interesting twists. It's certainly one of the better fantasy novels I've read in a while. (Review based on the Finnish translation.) [ Ombria in Shadow at ]Ombria in Shadow at LibraryThing ]

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