Saint Death’s Daughter
C. S. E. Cooney
Nothing complicates life like Death.
Lanie Stones, the daughter of the Royal Assassin and Chief Executioner of Liriat, has never led a normal life. Born with a gift for necromancy and a literal allergy to violence, she was raised in isolation in the family’s crumbling mansion by her oldest friend, the ancient revenant Goody Graves.
When her parents are murdered, it falls on Lanie and her cheerfully psychotic sister Nita to settle their extensive debts or lose their ancestral home-and Goody with it. Appeals to Liriat’s ruler to protect them fall on indifferent ears… until she, too, is murdered, throwing the nation’s future into doubt.
Hunted by Liriat’s enemies, hounded by her family’s creditors and terrorised by the ghost of her great-grandfather, Lanie will need more than luck to get through the next few months-but when the goddess of Death is on your side, anything is possible.
"Newcomers will still find Cooney's glittering narrative skills and vivid worldbuilding addictive, her diverse characters intriguing, and her message of justice and freedom stirring. This remarkable and richly detailed adventure is worth savoring." -- Publishers Weekly * Publishers Weekly * "C. S. E. Cooney is one of the most moving, daring, and plainly beautiful voices to come out of recent fantasy. She's a powerhouse." -- Catherynne M. Valente, NYT-bestselling author of the Fairyland novels -- Catherynne M. Valente "A delicious stew of science fiction, horror, and fantasy, marked by unforgettable characters who plumb the depths of pathos and triumph." - Publishers Weekly, starred review * Publishers Weekly * "Memorable prose propelled by extraordinary ideas... Twisted genius!" - Locus * Locus Magazine * "These stories are a pure joy." -Delia Sherman, author of Young Woman in a Garden: Stories -- Delia Sherman "Stories of surpassing delicacy and wit, told by a lady of rare talent." -- Ysabeau S. Wilce, Andre Norton Award-winning author of Flora's Dare -- Ysabeau S. Wilce "Highly original, mythic in scope, lyrically told, just plain fun." -- Nicole Kornher-Stace, author of Archivist Wasp -- Nicole Kornher-Stace "C.S.E. Cooney's Bone Swans is like visiting a literary Ys. Coaxed by her deft hand, lands and people long lost to memory resurface, breaking through the hearts of readers with the force of a gentle tsunami. Once that wave has broken over you, you are never the same." -- Tiffany Trent, author of The Unnaturalists -- Tiffany Trent "Like one of her characters, C. S. E. Cooney is a master piper, playing songs within songs. Her stories are wild, theatrical, full of music and murder and magic." -- James Enge, author of Blood of Ambrose -- James Enge "It's a treasure chest of a collection, and it's full of gems." -- Sharon Shinn, author of the Elemental Blessings series -- Sharon Shinn "Desdemona and the Deep is an eloquent, elegant novella about power, art, consequence and change. It's also pleasantly queer and drunk on language, which appealed to me deeply. I recommend it." - Liz Bourke, Locus -- Liz Bourke * Locus Magazine * "Edgy, romantic, earthy, and colorful." -- Amy Goldschlager, Locus -- Amy Goldschlager * Locus Magazine * "There is always the music of the writing, and the comic coloration, and the engaging and just awakening Desdemona to keep us entranced." -- Rich Horton, Locus -- Rich Horton "A rococo romp through strange and eerily familiar worlds."-- Erin Downey Howerton, Booklist -- Erin Downey Howerton * Booklist * "The writing is dense with poetry, festooned to the eyelids -- occasionally to the gills and other body-parts -- with fantastic imagery that comes together in the end in unexpected and entirely satisfying ways." -- Patricia A. McKillip -- Patricia A. McKillip "Is it extravagant? Yes. Does it flirt with camp? Oh, yes. Is it so beautiful, smart and joyful that I finished it gasping? Yes, yes, YES." -- Robert V.S. Redick, author of The Fire Sacraments Trilogy, and The Chathrand Voyage Quartet -- Robert Redick "A story that is by turns sly, sensual, and surprisingly sweet, Cooney spins an unexpected tale with an absolutely perfect ending." -- Sharon Shinn, author of the Samaria series, and the Twelve Houses series -- Sharon Shinn "CSE Cooney's prose once again delivers on the promise of the wild magic and music. Saint Death's Daughter will leave you feeling she's actually summoned a new world, and you might just stumble upon it around the next corner. Glorious." -- Angela Slatter, award-winning author of All the Murmuring Bones "C.S.E. Cooney has always been a consummate wordsmith, but with Saint Death's Daughter she proves she's a master of long form fantasy as well. Cooney sets her budding young necromancer adrift in a dazzlingly dark, weird, engaging and strangely warm world alive with memorable characters, hidden secrets and sinister intrigues. Everything, from tiny elements of characterization to overall pacing to information about the setting, is handled with a deft skill others should strive to emulate. This is a masterful work from a writer at the top of her game. I can hardly wait to see what she conjures next!" -- Howard Andrew Jones, author of the Ring-Sworn Trilogy 'Sumptuous, bawdy and layered as a mille-feuille... this book is impossible not to devour.' -- Lisa L. Hannett "If you like Trudi Canavan, Laurie Marks, Mieville-but-kindly, Tansy Rayner Roberts, Pratchett at his gentlest & gravest, and a dash of Ellen Kushner's Tremontaine, and can imagine all these coexisting, then you begin to catch at the atmosphere of Saint Death's Daughter." -- Kathleen Jennings "It feels like overhearing a convo between Terry Pratchett and Susanna Clarke. A total must if you dig footnotes or fantasy." -- Patty Templeton "A giddy, glittering mosaic of incautious hope and over-generous loves" -- Kathleen Jennings "A mind-spinningly original bit of worldbuilding, and an emotional arc so moving that I cried like a baby." -- Caitlyn Paxson "Cooney's prose, is a vast, note-perfect song. There's no voice like it." -- Robert V. S. Redick "St. Death's Daughter is a triumph of a book, gorgeous beyond measure, fizzing with Cooney's love for language, her inventiveness in prose; it is also unbearably tender in how it addresses the idea of death and legacy, the love we can gather into a life before we curl to sleep in Death's arms." -- Cassandra Khaw "Saint Death's Daughter is filled with lavish world building, lyrical prose, and characters to die for. C S.E. Cooney is a faerie queen barely trying to pass in the mundane world. This book is as luminous and flamboyant as she is." -- Tina Jens, award winning author of The Blues Ain't Nothin': Tales of the Lonesome Blues Pub "Gorgeous, sexy, cruel and compassionate and funny. Such rich, delicious world-building and frankly lovable characters (even the baddies are compelling!). I relished every word." -- Liz Duffy Adams, author of Tremontaine and Whitehall "Saint Death's Daughter is a tumultuous, swaggering, cackling story, a gorgeous citrus orchard with bones for roots. Miscellaneous Stones' journey into adulthood and power, sorting knowledge from wisdom and vengeance from justice, has an ocean's breadth and depth, its storms and sparkles and salt. Soaring with love and absolutely fizzing with tenderness and joy--I have never read anything so utterly alive." -- Amal El-Mohtar "Just as magical as I knew it would be. The compassion Claire has for her characters, the ways in which she draws the reader deep into her world, are peerless and divine. I could go on about the wonder of her prose, but I'd rather readers just dive straight in and discover it for themselves." -- Tiffany Trent "Saint Death's Daughter is marvellous: it strikes an expert balance between light and dark, serious and ludicrous, and always keeps a wonderful, strong, queer energy about itself." -- Mike Brooks "I loved Saint Death's Daughter to pieces. I loved the world-building and the characters and the way that every time I thought I knew what kind of book it was, it changed. There was an ebullience to this book, in its world-building (with footnotes!) and its prose and its characters, that I found both delightful and compelling. I enjoyed it tremendously and look forward to the next installment in the adventures of Miscellaneous Immiscible Stones." -- Katherine Addison
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