The Shadow of the Torturer: Urth: Book of the New Sun, Book 1

Front Cover
Orion, Sep 29, 2011 - Fiction - 301 pages
647 Reviews

Severian is a torturer, born to the guild and with an exceptionally promising career ahead of him . . . until he falls in love with one of his victims, a beautiful young noblewoman.

Her excruciations are delayed for some months and, out of love, Severian helps her commit suicide and escape her fate. For a torturer, there is no more unforgivable act. In punishment he is exiled from the guild and his home city to the distant metropolis of Thrax with little more than Terminus Est, a fabled sword, to his name.

Along the way he has to learn to survive in a wider world without the guild - a world in which he has already made both allies and enemies. And a strange gem is about to fall into his possession, which will only make his enemies pursue him with ever-more determination . . .

Winner of the World Fantasy Award for best novel, 1981

Winner of the BSFA Award for best novel, 1982

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The writing is superb and the pacing was powerful. - Goodreads
That's the depiction of my bafflement. - Goodreads
Great world, great prose. - Goodreads
The plot, however, dragged on very slowly. - Goodreads
Such an interesting premise. - Goodreads
Gene Wolfe's prose is beautiful, haunting and lyrical. - Goodreads

Review: The Shadow of the Torturer (The Book of the New Sun #1)

User Review  - Peter - Goodreads

I loved the beginning of this novel. The writing is superb and the pacing was powerful. The first few chapters of this book struck me more than most books I've ever read. But once the narrative ... Read full review

Review: The Shadow of the Torturer (The Book of the New Sun #1)

User Review  - Emily (BellaGrace) - Goodreads

I bought this book because I have heard a lot of people raving about The Book of the New Sun. I know it's won all kinds of awards and is something of a classic. However, this book was really ... Read full review

About the author (2011)

Gene Wolfe (1930 -) Gene Wolfe was born in New York in 1930 and raised in Texas. After serving in the Korean War he graduated in mechanical engineering from the University of Houston and worked in engineering until becoming an editor of a trade periodical, Plant Engineering, in 1972. Since retiring from this post in 1984, he has written full-time. The author of over three dozen award-wining novels and story collections, he is regarded as one of modern fantasy's most important writers. His best-known work, the four volume far-future Book of the New Sun, won the World Fantasy, BSFA, Nebula, British Fantasy and John W. Campbell memorial Awards. He has won the World Fantasy Award four times for his novels and collections and the World Fantasy Life Achievement Award for his extraordinary body of work. Gene Wolfe lives in Illinois with his wife, Rosemary.

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