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Delirium's Mistress

(Tales from the Flat Earth #4)

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  689 ratings  ·  27 reviews
A recognized master fantasist, Tanith Lee has won multiple awards for her craft, including the British Fantasy Award, the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement, and the Bram Stoker Award for Lifetime Achievement in Horror.

The fourth installment in Lee's breathtaking series, Tales from the Flat Earth, Delirium's Mistress returns to a shadowy and mythic world where demon
Paperback, 416 pages
Published June 4th 1986 by DAW (first published 1985)
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Average rating 4.21  · 
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Jun 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The longest by far of Tanith Lee's Flat Earth books; also a direct continuation from Delusion's Master (the third book) -- per the introduction, Delusion's Master/Delirium's Mistress likely would have been one really, really long book were it not for a) the exigencies of bookbinding and b) the fact that Lee got distracted by another project between the two books.


Delusion's Master was the story of Chuz, third of the Lords of Darkness, and the tricks he played on Azhrarn, Night's Master, an
Pam Baddeley
Mar 08, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
This fourth volume in the series is very long and perhaps that was part of the problem I had with it because it has a very meandering plot, and the characters are all supernatural - demonic or half demon or angels or a man who is immortal - and it is therefore very difficult to relate to them or really care much about them. Even one mortal character who appears only briefly and is a prince of the sea people is a mage and not human.

In this, Azhrarn's half human daughter is left alone and neglecte
D.D. Price
This book is a mess. It is a disaster of a mess. It is perhaps the biggest reading disappointment I’ve experienced this year. I had waited over a year to continue with the Flat Earth series. I had waited due to lack of availability of the books. So you can imagine my excitement at the DAW reissue. Tanith Lee is one of my favorite authors so I was salivating in anticipation to continue with this awesome series. Except that this book wasn’t as awesome as the previous books. It has some good moment ...more
James Kibirige
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, favorites
Though it took me very long time to finish Delirium's Mistress, I enjoyed it very much. This book is not my favorite in the Tales from the Flat Earth, but the story is still magnificent, full of details and imagination. I think the characterization of the heroine Sovaz/Azhriaz/Atmeh is at first a little flat, but with the story going on, she becomes more and more interesting. The whole story is her journey of self-discovery and of pursuit of identity, and I especially love the ending scene.
Karas Jim
A huge disappointment, this book by Tanith Lee. It is superfluous and repetitive without any apparent reason, its narration is mundane and tiresome, and character development seemingly occurs just to occur. In my opinion, Tanith Lee grew complacent. Just because you supposedly put all five Lords of Darkness in one book, coupled with epic battles and confrontations (which are not written in a very stimulative manner, I might add), does not mean that your storytelling will automatically turn out a ...more
Oct 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Tanith Lee passed away in 2015, and while I mourned my favourite author, of whose death I only heard months later, the prices of her books skyrocketed, making it almost impossible for me to continue this much-beloved series without going bankrupt. Few works ever touched me like Lee's, and witnessing her stories being removed from print one after the other felt like running out of time. The old novels sold out for horrendous sums, and I desperately reread the three first parts of the Tales from t ...more
Genevra Littlejohn
Feb 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
A more satisfying end to a glorious series than I had believed possible. It took me years to find this book, and I read it until the front cover fell off. It's marvelous to see the culmination of a decade of character-building; everyone who began in the earlier books as immature(Azhrarn, with his reckless lust and casual cruelty, Uhlume, with his unlove for humanity, Zhirem/Zhirek/Dathanja with his uncertainty, and so many others)come into themselves in so many interesting ways. Each of the prio ...more
Apr 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had been kind of resentful with this book for many years. But after listening to the audio version of the whole series, I felt I could appreciate the series, especially the last few volumes, truly now. So I got so excited when the e-book version of the series started becoming available and felt grateful for that. This book reminded me that this series is also stories of mankind.
Jan 19, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I seem to be enjoying each volume less than its predecessor. Perhaps I am wearying of the storytelling style. As the longest of the Tales, it did tend to ramble at times, almost to the point of incoherence. Or else it was just a matter of my waning interest.

The ending was poignant, however.
Apr 09, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dutch, high-fantasy
I am just at page 69 but it has been a real shock for me from the very beginning.
Tanith Lee is an author from which I have only read 2 previous books, one I can't recall but taht it was a Spanish translation and quite good, the other was the first book of the Vis series (The Stormlord) which I found rather dull and with a not quite consistent storyline.

But this one is a completely different thing. The author uses a style close to poetic prose and the story is utterly compelling. Well, I don't w
Mar 26, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
This book is one of a series that are wonderfully written. They are adult fairy tales not for the faint of heart, where demons are unbearably lovely yet they are prone to damaging those things they take an interest in. You can start anywhere in the series, but it's best to get the backstory by starting at the beginning and working up to this one.
Tanith Lee's language is the main draw in these books. They are lush and opulent to a fault but they are well plotted and nicely paced so that you're n
Dec 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tanith-lee
Book 4. What I consider the "meat" of the Flat Earth series. This is the book that caused me to call Tanith Lee "religion." You can read this book first & then find yourself searching for 1, 2 & 3 to research the history this one draws on. ...more
Oct 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: people who can come up with a plausible pronunciation of the name 'Uhlume'
Coming off of Death's Master--basically a story of murder and revenge sex--I didn't expect this book to be such a sentimental examination of what it is to be human and mortal. Weirdly affecting, and still full of the bizarre and wondrous.
Oct 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
my favourite of the series, still.
Dec 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Plenty of good stories included as Azhriaz takes on several names and different roles and stations. She wanders the Flat Earth and the seas below, she becomes a goddess ruling a city the size of a continent and receives tributes, and becomes the daughter that she never had the chance to be. Throughout she is searching for self-exiled and thoroughly mad Chuz, pursued by a revenge from the gods, and assisted by some characters from previous books. Not as much erotic description or even the chance ...more
Jun 24, 2020 rated it did not like it
Tanith Lee has written some of my favorite books of all time. This is not one of them. It's a snooze fest. It's so vague & I don't know what's going on. I'm not sure what was the point of the story. I only finished it because I'm trying to read everything she's ever written. I may have to re-think that considering this took me 3 years to read. ...more
Dennis Eoffe
Jul 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a fairly long book for Tanith Lee - its so densely packed that for a while it felt like the plot was not going anywhere.
The entire time I was reading it I was thinking 3 stars
but wow the ending is beautiful...I would say the last third of the book made it 4 stars
I even teared up a bit in the end won't lie
the author is magical with words no doubt
Aldo Ojeda
Jun 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
In the fourth book of the series, Tanith Lee unleashes all her delirious imagination. By the middle of Delirium's Mistress, the tale goes full surrealistic. Her narration also becomes more ornate than ever. But still, some whole chapters feel unnesesary, as the return of some characters from the previous books.
Ана Хелс
Mar 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
След магията на лудостта идва обсебващата пропаст на делириума, в който заспиват сърца и се събуждат души. С промяната на съзнанието и възраждането на мечтите у героите полу-хора, но не и покровители на човешкия род, правилата на световния ред се изменят по волята на несъществуващи зарове. Четвъртият лорд на мрака – принц Кишмет или Съдбата , излиза на сцената , за да спаси най-новата богиня на плоската земя, сменяща имена и спомени като сенките в ясно черните си коси.

От жестоки владетели и безм
Nov 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
The Basics

This is the fourth installment in Tanith Lee’s Tales of the Flat Earth. Last we left off in Delusion’s Master, Azhrarn, Prince of Demons, had fallen in love with a mortal and sired a child. This is the story of that child.

My Thoughts

Tales of the Flat Earth is Lee’s masterstroke when it comes to fantasy writing. It’s a dark fairy tale that makes no attempt at being anything but purely adult. I have copies of the previous three books that plainly state “adult fantasy” on the cover, as if
Virgil S.
May 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I read Night's Master a while back and loved it. Tanith Lee's sumptuous prose and intriguing, unique characters left me wanting to delve deeper into the Flat Earth series.

I, however, have had to curb my spending, and am currently relying on my city's library system for my reading material. The library doesn't have Death's Master or Delusion's Master available to check out, so I had to jump right into Delirium's Mistress. I read summaries of Death's Master and Delusion's Master before starting on
Claudia Piña
Parece que tiene mucho que empecé Flat Earth, se siente como que han pasado tantas cosas. Al principio me pareció meramente interesante y no tenía idea de que terminaría tan fascinada con Tanith Lee y este universo tan original y complejo, lleno de grandes personajes y hermosas descripciones.

Tenía un poco de preocupación de que terminara en un tono agridulce y oscuro como el resto de la serie, pero me alegra que fuera un final tan satisfatorio. Siento que no se quedó solo en frases bellas y ela
Aug 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Another consistently brilliant installment in the books of the Flat Earth series, Delirium's Mistress describes the rise and fall of Azhrarn's daughter, Azhriaz. She is arguably the most developed character yet in Lee's defining series, as well as providing deeper insight into previous characters (most notably Zhirek) through the foil of her own adventures. The prose poetry of these novels is crystallized here, every page containing playful, artful and startling turns of phrase and pointedly imp ...more
Mickey Schulz
Dec 03, 2008 rated it it was amazing
More Flat Earth. I named my first cat Azhriaz after the title character if that tells you anything.
Sep 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, best
magic + wisdom = awesome
I mean really, this book explains how humans came to be, no kidding.
A.C. Ellas
rated it it was amazing
Nov 28, 2012
rated it liked it
Sep 11, 2018
Astrid Geenen
rated it really liked it
Sep 23, 2013
rated it really liked it
Aug 05, 2016
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Tanith Lee was a British writer of science fiction, horror, and fantasy. She was the author of 77 novels, 14 collections, and almost 300 short stories. She also wrote four radio plays broadcast by the BBC and two scripts for the UK, science fiction, cult television series "Blake's 7."
Before becoming a full time writer, Lee worked as a file clerk, an assistant librarian, a shop assistant, and a wai

Other books in the series

Tales from the Flat Earth (5 books)
  • Night's Master  (Tales from the Flat Earth #1)
  • Death's Master (Flat Earth, #2)
  • Delusion's Master (Flat Earth, #3)
  • Night's Sorceries (Flat Earth, #5)

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