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Kushiel's Dart Mass Market Paperback – Mar 15 2002


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 928 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Fantasy (March 15 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765342987
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765342980
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 9.9 x 3.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 386 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (206 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #94,179 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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First Sentence
Lest anyone should suppose that I am a cuckoo's child, got on the wrong side of the blanket by lusty peasant stock and sold into indenture in a shortfallen season, I may say that I am House-born and reared in the Night Court proper, for all the good it did me. Read the first page
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4.3 out of 5 stars
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I continue to read this book over and over. I love everything about it. I love the characters, the setting and the religious elements. I enjoy alternative reality constructs, and Jacqueline Carey provides us with one of the best. Very satisfying escapist reading. What house would you serve?
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By Jean Roberta on June 19 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The literature of SM seems have started with poetry: the exquisite, transformative agony of one-sided love as described in "courtly love" sonnets, a French tradition said to have started as early as 1000 AD, and in religious poetry about the suffering and devotion of saints. Then there was the savagely satirical fiction written by the Marquis de Sade on the eve of the French Revolution. The classic novel of female domination, Venus in Furs, appeared in the nineteenth century, and its author, Sacher-Masoch, suffered more than he wished for when he came to be associated with the newly-diagnosed psychological "illness" which was named after him; he had hoped to be remembered for his literary skill. The Story of O, a Frenchwoman's tribute to her lover, appeared under a pen name in 1954, and was widely believed to be the work of a male chauvinist. Before the Sexual Revolution of the 1960s, these were the classic texts of "perversion."

Times have changed. Literature on specialized sexual tastes which were formerly veiled in metaphors and Latin words is now clear, thorough, often written as non-fiction, and easily available on websites. Although certain writers of SM fiction have carried on the literary traditions of their predecessors, the current classic texts are how-to manuals that are often recommended for beginners. As useful as this material is, it leaves out the poetry of the earlier works. Some concepts still seem better-expressed in the form of teaching stories.

Kushiel's Dart is a big (700-page) novel that refers to an older French literary tradition while reconstructing French history. In this setting, an attraction to pain is a spiritual gift from a dark angel, Kushiel (the Punisher of God), who presides over a rocky coastal region in the area of real-life Normandy.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
What captured me most about this series was how the writing style complemented the world and themes explored. Carey writes with a velvety richness that, in another setting, might seem overly flambuoyant as much "high fantasy" tends to. In the land of Terre D'Ange, however, richness, luxury, and beauty are the rule of the day, and Carey's writing communicates that to the reader in style as well as words. I was also gratified to find a fantasy novel where women take the day not only as herions or villians, but in both capacities and with equal realism and power. Unlike some reviewers, I found the masochism of the story to be thematically valid in its explicitness. This is a story about the barest, rawest forms of human expression (emotionally, sexually, and spiritually), and as such it makes sense to present vulnerability and strength in such explicit juxtaposition. Perhaps I am D'Angeline at heart, but overall, I love this book for its beauty.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book captured my full attention from the get-go years ago and I went on and read the entire series. It was worth every minute. It took me to a completely different world, full of erotics, fantasies, and heart breaks. If you are ready to immerse yourself into a world of raw erotic sex, pleasure, but also indescribable agony and pain, hang on tight to an amazing journey. Full of intrigues and surprising turns, this series is still my all time favourite!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Nancy E. on June 2 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have read many novels where the main character has been god touched, and uses his or her skills as an emissary of the gods to help save the lives of others but never in this way. Kushiel's Dart a novel by fantasy newcomer Jacquline Carey is a unique story. I can seriously say I have never seen anything quite like it before. It tells the story of, Phedre, a girl born with an ill luck name and a scarlet mote in her left eye. Considered to be cursed, she is sold in indentured servitude into the Night Court where she hopes one day to become a servant of Naamah, the goddess of sexual pleasure. Her life is changed forever when she is taken in by Anafiel no Delauny, a courtesan and spy. He sees her for what she really is, an anguissette, a child touched by the God of punishment Kusheil. This means that she is forced forever to feel pleasure and pain as one. As she begins to train for Naamah's service it is Delauny who teaches her the skills she will need to know to survive. He teachers her languages, history, and how to listen and pay attention in a world of dangerous politics.
There are so many good things to be said about this novel and I cannot possibly list them all here. One of the most attractive things about this book, in my opinion, is the elegant prose it is written in. Certainly not for everyone, Ms. Carey writes in a very descriptive manner filled with beautiful picture of the D'Angeline world. Although some would consider this to be too drawn out and lengthy is fits the character, a strong woman who is taught to listen and pay attention to every detail, perfectly. Another strong point would have to be the instantly likeable characters. Phedre for all of her strengths is a wonderfully flawed character.
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