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Macmillan, 2004 - 256 síğur

From bestselling fantasy author Steven Brust comes this paranormal novel of immortality—and its price...

Born over a century ago, Agyar was once a frivolous young man, before he found unwanted immortality in a woman's blood-red lips. Now he goes from woman to woman, and decade to decade, finding himself at last in an Midwestern college town, where he must choose between the seductions of salvation—and of destruction.


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LibraryThing Review

Umsögn notanda  - JenneB - LibraryThing

Wow, this took a little getting into but it sneaks up on you and grabs the back of your neck. If you're going to read this, DO NOT READ ANYTHING ELSE ABOUT IT. It wouldn't be as fun without the slow realization of what is really going on. Read full review


Umsögn notanda  - Kirkus

Impressively wrought modern vampire/redemption yarn, from the author of The Phoenix Guards, The Gypsy (p. 641), etc. Arriving in the quiet college town of Lakota, Ohio, Agyar Janos takes up residence ... Read full review

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Common terms and phrases

Um höfundinn (2004)

na·ture n 1. The intrinsic characteristics and qualities of a person or thing. 2. The order, disposition, and essence of all entities composing the physical universe. AMERICAN HERITAGE DICTIONARY
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= 234567890-*)(’&—%$#“+ It seems to be working. Jim mentioned that there was an old typewriting machine in one of the upstairs bedrooms, and I can’t resist trying it out. It seems to have been built in the 1930’s by Royal, and it’s amazing how well it works. This is oddly enjoyable. What should I type? When I was very young, I thought perhaps I would be a journalist, so I taught this skill to myself, and that first paragraph was enough to convince me that it is still there. I might enjoy sitting here from time to time and putting marks on paper, if I had anything to talk about. To be a journalist, I think, means to have an eye and a memory for detail. Yet my own memory is sufficiently idiosyncratic that I wonder if I would ever have been capable of creating a coherent article, even had my life gone in that direction. The things I remember seem to come in odd gasps, with a picture here, an emotion there, neither in order of importance nor in order chronological, except for the most recent of events. I recall, for example, from the Christmas party last week, how Mrs. Lockwitt’s earring dangled against her neck and reflected light from a fixture of four frosted sixty-watt bulbs. This image is very clear, but things from even a few weeks ago are dim, in that I remember they happened, but could not supply the details. I remember that Mrs. Lockwitt was saying something to me, but not looking at me as she spoke. I think she said, “There’s something foreign about the way you speak,” and then turned so that she was facing me. I took the opportunity to observe: slightly round, late forties, heavily powdered. She wore something peach colored that might have looked all right if we weren’t in a room where everything was blond wood. I couldn’t decide from her remark if she was beginning a conversational gambit or snubbing me, so I gave a brief tight-lipped smile of the sort Miss Manners would have approved of and didn’t say anything. She—Mrs. Lockwitt, not Miss Manners—turned back to studying Professor Carpenter’s library, filled as it was with books, oak furniture, and academicians in several flavors. She said, “Have you been around here long?” I started to say yes, reconsidered, reconsidered again, and said, “A few weeks. Maybe longer or shorter, depending upon what you mean by around here.” There were thirty-five or forty graduate students and instructors in the house, about half in the library, the others divided between the living room where Miles Davis’s Sketches of Spain was on the stereo and the kitchen where smoking was allowed. Three or four young students were studying the professor’s collection of books, the others were all talking with each other about the breakup of the Eastern Bloc or the imminence of war, or telling jokes that you had to be a third-year student of German literature to understand. “But you are with the college?” said Mrs. Lockwitt. I caught her eye, held it, and said, “You don’t look like an academic.” “Oh, I’m not,” she said, blushing just a little. She was, as I knew already, the professor’s lover, and had probably paid for a third of the books in this room, as well as the bust of Voltaire and the Degas that was really very fine work for a print. Carpenter, head of the Modern Languages Department, was a bent stick of a bloodless Englishman, and I wondered how often the two of them had sex, and what it was like. You never know; maybe they made the walls rattle. I was thinking about leaving. The boring but rather pretty girl named, hmm, whatever her name was, who had invited me to the party had already left, and, more important, I had confirmed what she’d told me—the professor owned a house not far from there which had never been rented. The girl (was it Rachel? Rebecca? something like that) had been trying to convince me of the existence of spirits, and claimed that the house was demon-infested, which is how the subject had come up. Whether it was or not, I had already pumped Mrs. Lockwitt for the location, and she had confirmed that it was deserted, apparently because she had convinced “Arthur” to move in with her. She said nothing about demons. I don’t happen to believe in demons, so I wasn’t surprised. I had found what I wanted, though, and was ready to leave. I took a last look around. Near the door a tall, serious-looking young man wearing a dark sweater and tan knit slacks was engaged in premating rituals with a long-necked beauty in a tight, slinky black dress that came down to her knees and was held up by straps. It wasn’t all that flattering, as it made her neck seem even longer, almost deformed. I looked at Mrs. Lockwitt’s earring once more, but she didn’t seem inclined to continue the conversation. She helped herself from the punch bowl and offered me some. Who puts punch bowls in the library? In any case, I knew what had gone into it, so I declined, excused myself with a gesture, and headed for the probable lovers-to-be. “ … several generations,” he was saying. “All in the same family.” “So you think it’s genetic?” she said, sounding more interested than she probably was. “It doesn’t surprise me. There are whole families of artists and musicians, why shouldn’t mathematics be the same way?” “Exactly. We’re planning a project now with preschoolers, testing their aptitudes and relating it to their parents’ aptitudes. We’re working on a grant proposal with Timson in Biology.” “It sounds exciting,” she said, as if trying to convince herself it was. “How far along—” She stopped because I had arrived. They looked at me, holding back their smiles a bit, the way one does with strangers who interrupt a conversation or a mutual seduction. He was half a head taller than I was, and broader; not at all matching the stereotype for people who talk about such things. She was almost my height, but more attractive than I am. “I don’t believe we’ve met before,” I said, shifting my eyes to include them both. “John Agyar. Jack, if you like.” They looked at each other quickly, not knowing how to deal with the interruption. As the silence was becoming uncomfortable, he loosened up a little and said, “Don Swaggart.” “Jill Quarrier.” I looked at her and performed a frown of recognition. “The artist?” You could practically see her thaw. “You know my work?” I haven’t always been good at guesswork, but I’ve learned. “I’ve never had the pleasure of seeing any; but you’ve been spoken of in very complimentary terms.” “Really? By whom?” I warmed to her a litt≤ most people would have said “who.” “Several people around the department. I don’t recall any names, but I was certainly intrigued by what I heard. Do you happen to have anything with you?” “Yes, do you?” said Young Don, no doubt feeling her attention slip away. “I’m afraid not,” she said, either pleased, disappointed, or both. I couldn’t imagine what sort of artist she would be—her face had no animation whatsoever. That was all right; it wasn’t her face I was interested in. “Is your work on display at the college?” “Not at the moment. I have a few pieces at the studio in Berkshire West.” “I’d love to see them.” Donald shifted uncomfortably, probably trying to think of something to say other than “so would I.” He settled for asking me, “What department are you with?” I laughed without showing teeth. “What would you guess?” She said, “Most people here are Modern Languages, but I’d have guessed you for Drama.” “Really? I think I’m flattered.” Young Don said, “I’d have guessed Business.” I caught his eye and said, “No, I’m afraid not. And you’re Sociology.” He frowned. “Good guess.” “No guess,” I said. “You fit the profile.” He was wise enough not to ask, but she seemed stung on his behalf and said, “Why is everyone down on sociology? I think the study of how people live together is fascinating.” “People are down on sociology,” I said, “because it was invented by people who felt someone ought to answer Marx, and there’s no answer for Marx outside of religion, a field any civilized person ought to avoid.” “That’s preposterous—” he began. “What is?” “Your contention about sociology.” “Oh. I thought you meant my contention about religion.” “What makes you think—” “Who first popularized the t

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