Last Song Before Night By Ilana C. Myer

I’m a proud husband, what can I say.

I know on this blog I don’t normally stray from my usual topics about tech, and development. But I would be amiss if I did not mention this huge event in our life. So I hope you’ll forgive this digression.

I’m a not-so-closet geek complete with a love for fantasy. The first “grown-up” book I read myself was The Blue Sword, my oldest sister had started reading it to me, but I couldn’t wait for her to continue and I finished it myself. Some of my fondest early memories was of my mother reading me The Hobbit, and this one time I slept over my best friend’s house and his mother was reading the kids The Two Towers. I shared the Belgariad and Mallorean with my parents when I discovered David Eddings.

In short, fantasy was a big part of my identity growing up and has stayed with me. So when I met Ilana and she told me she was writing a fantasy novel, I thought that that was the coolest thing.

I’ve lost count how many times I’ve read various versions of Last Song Before Night. This past week I read the audiobook – as many of you I’m a little bit obsessed with audiobooks. I don’t know if it was the fifth or sixth time I’ve read it, but I was still swept away by its lyrical beauty, complex plot and characters. I laughed and cried, again.

I am a bit biased, so I thought I’d share what others are saying. These are some of my favorite reviews of the book so far…

Jason Heller, Senior Writer for The A.V. Club, and writer for NPR, described it as “A Beautifully Orchestrated Fantasy”.

“Myer’s depiction of Tamryllin and the land it inhabits is shadowy and lush, a tapestry of gossamer wonders as well as theocratic oppression and brutality. But the core of Last Song’s strength is its characters. Bound by enmities, rivalries, lust, sacrifices and ancient tragedies, the novel’s sizable cast forms a dizzying chemistry.”

NPR’s review of Last Song Before Night by Ilana C. Myer

Seth Dickinson, Author of The Traitor Baru Cormorant, reveals some of the complexities of the book…

“The journey of this novel is their painful, bloody, heart-wrenching escape into a place of personal truth. One by one they begin to break away from their scripts. Even the world-threatening plot arc is predicated on a lie—not a lie of malice, but one of fragile, human self-deceit and shame.”

Seth Dickinson’s review of Last Song Before Night by Ilana C. Myer

And David Mack, New York Times bestselling author of more than twenty-five novels describes…

“One of the richest pleasures of Last Song is seeing how Myer subverts readers’ expectations of the epic fantasy genre. It evinces all the hallmarks of a typical quest tale—then it becomes something deeper, more intimate, and ultimately unflinching in its examination of its characters’ ugliest qualities and darkest secrets.”

David Mack’s review of Last Song Before Night by Ilana C. Myer

It’s been a journey, following the progression of this book, and it has been so rewarding to see the beautiful things people have been saying.

Cover art: Stephan Martiniere