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The Gifts of Asti

Andre Norton

Book Overview: 

Varta, the last priestess of Asti, lives alone with Lur, a telepath of the lizardfolk, in Asti's isolated mountain retreat. Decadent Memphir has long since drifted away from the austere paths of Asti, and now the barbarians of Klem are sacking the city, and the smoke of its burning drifts up to the temple.

Recommended for fans of Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .She put aside the fine silks, the jeweled cincture, which had been the badge of Asti's service and drew on over her naked body a suit of scaled skin, gemmed and glistening in the rays of the small sun. There was a hood to cover the entire head, taloned gloves for the hands, webbed, clawed coverings for the feet—as if the skin of a giant, man-like lizard had been tanned and fashioned into this suit. And Varta suspected that that might be so—the world of Erb had not always been held by the human-kind alone.

There were supplies here too, lying untouched in ageless containers within a lizard-skin pouch. Varta touched her tongue without fear to a powdered restorative, sharing it with Lur, whose own mailed skin would protect him through the dangers to come.

She folded the regalia she had stripped off and laid it in the chest, smoothing it regretfully before she dropped the lid upon its shimmering color. Never again would Asti's servant wear the so. . . Read More