Aranyani: The Courtesan’s Lament, by Stephen Alter
Aranyani: The Courtesan’s Lament, by Stephen Alter
A tale of a hunter and a courtesan: The brave, noble Vanu, huntsman of the forest and the beautiful, graceful Aranyani, child of the mountains. Theirs is a love that reverberates through time, a story that remains as eternal as the waters of the Ganga.
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Thomas Covenant returns unwillingly to a Land ravaged by four thousand years of Lord Foul's pestilence. Under the evil Sunbane, the people of the Land submit to cruel sacrifices; the rulers of Revelstone are corrupt, the fields and forests laid waste; the healing Earth-power impotent.Accompanied by a woman from his own world, Covenant begins a new quest to save the Land from the forces that have all but destroyed it.
Colin Henry Wilson was born and raised in Leicester, England, U.K. He left school at 16, worked in factories and various occupations, and read in his spare time. When Wilson was 24, Gollancz published The Outsider (1956) which examines the role of the social 'outsider' in seminal works of various key literary and cultural figures. These include Albert Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre, Ernest Hemingway, Hermann Hesse, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, William James, T. E. Lawrence, Vaslav Nijinsky and Vincent Van Gogh and Wilson discusses his perception of Social alienation in their work. The book was a best seller and helped popularize existentialism in Britain. Critical praise though, was short-lived and Wilson was soon widely criticized.Wilson's works after The Outsider focused on positive aspects of human psychology, such as peak experiences and the narrowness of consciousness. He admired the humanistic psychologist Abraham Maslow and corresponded with him. Wilson wrote The War Against Sleep: The Philosophy of Gurdjieff on the life, work and philosophy of G. I. Gurdjieff and an accessible introduction to the Greek-Armenian mystic in 1980. He argues throughout his work that the existentialist focus on defeat or nausea is only a partial representation of reality and that there is no particular reason for accepting it. Wilson views normal, everyday consciousness buffeted by the moment, as "blinkered" and argues that it should not be accepted as showing us the truth about reality. This blinkering has some evolutionary advantages in that it stops us from being completely immersed in wonder, or in the huge stream of events, and hence unable to act. However, to live properly we need to access more than this everyday consciousness. Wilson believes that our peak experiences of joy and meaningfulness are as real as our experiences of angst and, since we are more fully alive at these moments, they are more real. These experiences can be cultivated through concentration, paying attention, relaxation and certain types of work.
Paige Mahoney has escaped the brutal prison camp of Sheol I, but her problems have only just begun: many of the survivors are missing and she is the most wanted person in London. As Scion turns its all-seeing eye on the dreamwalker, the mime-lords and mimequeens of the city's gangs are invited to a rare meeting of the Unnatural Assembly. Jaxon Hall and his Seven Seals prepare to take centre stage, but there are bitter fault lines running through the clairvoyant community and dark secrets around every corner. Then the Rephaim begin crawling out from the shadows. But where is Warden? Paige must keep moving, from Seven Dials to Grub Street to the secret catacombs of Camden, until the fate of the underworld can be decided.
A riotously funny novel from Penny Smith.Miranda Blake is divorced. At 45, things are starting to head south. She’s toying with the idea of Botox. Toying with the idea of facial surgery. And toying with getting a job or possibly a toy boy. The only block to all those things is her stiff, uppity daughter, 23-year-old Lucy. Pompous is what Miranda calls her. (Sane, is how Lucy sees it.)Her friends are trying to set her up with a collection of bankers and company directors… Similar types to her ex-husband, Nigel (Nigel – just saying his name makes her wince) and every new date ends in disaster. So, one summer's day, Miranda decides to go and help clean out a local canal. She falls for Alex, a dreadlocked eco-warrior. But Lucy does not approve and sets about sabotaging the relationship. She succeeds…Miranda, heartbroken, goes on holiday to Spain. But there, things only go from bad to worse – she falls in with a bad crowd and is soon way out of her depth. What is it they know about Alex and his family? How is the wealthy recluse, and island owner, David Miller involved in their dodgy business activities?Aboard a glamorous yacht, hosting an award ceremony with former breakfast TV star Katie Fisher, Miranda might be in more trouble than she ever could have imagined. Will Alex get there in time to save her?