Nebula Award nominee 1999.
Martha Wells's brilliant novels The Element of Fire and City of Bones heralded an exciting new voice in fantasy and garnered huge critical acclaim. Now she presents her most major novel to date – a marvelous tale of passion, danger and deadly adventure...
The Death of the Necromancer
Nicholas Valiarde is a passionate, embittered nobleman with an enigmatic past. Consumed by thoughts of vengeance, he is consoled only by thoughts of the beautiful, dangerous Madeline. He is also the greatest thief in all of Ile-Rien...
On the gaslit streets of the city, he assumes the guise of a master criminal, stealing jewels from wealthy nobles to finance his quest for vengeance: the murder of Count Montesq. Montesq orchestrated the wrongful execution of Nicholas's beloved godfather on false charges of necromancy – the art of divination through communion with the dead – a practice long outlawed in the kingdom of Ile-Rien.
But now Nicholas's murderous mission is being interrupted by a series of eerie, unexplainable, even fatal events. Someone with tremendous magical powers is opposing him. Children vanish, corpses assume the visage of real people, mortal spells are cast, and traces of necromantic power that hasn't been used for centuries are found. And when a spiritualist unwittingly leads Nicholas to a decrepit old house, the truly monstrous nature of his peril finally emerges in harrowing detail.
Nicholas and his band of criminals and disgraced officers must confront and destroy an ancient and awesome evil rising from its hideous darkness to conquer all. Even the help of Ile-Rien's greatest sorcerer may not be sufficient, for Nicholas faces a woefully mismatched battle – with unthinkable horrors in store for the loser.
Praiser for The Death of the Necromancer:
"A seamless blend of fantasy, history, magic and mystery. This is the kind of world that you come to believe exists, somewhere; a place you leave only reluctantly." – Sean Russell
"The vivid setting of a gas-lit city, equal parts decadence and elegance, would eclipse lesser characters than these. Character construction and setting are so deftly interwoven with the swiftly moving plot that the prose literally swept me away. The reader should be warned in advance, it is difficult to close the covers of this book." – Robin Hobb
"Wells never fails to intrigue, amuse, and fascinate with her imaginative world, wonderful characters, and expert grasp of narrative style. I highly recommend anything by Martha Wells – and I wish she wrote faster!" – Jennifer Roberson