By David Dalglish
In booklet #4 of the Shadowdance sequence, Haern is the King's Watcher, born an murderer in basic terms to develop into the town of Veldaren's protector opposed to the thief guilds.
When Lord Victor Kane assaults the town, made up our minds to stamp out all corruption, overseas gangs pour in amidst the chaos in an try to overthrow the present lords of the underworld.
And while a mysterious killer often called the Widow starts mutilating thieves, paranoia engulfs the town. Haern is aware a person is in the back of the turmoil, pulling strings. If he doesn't discover who — and shortly — his liked urban will burn.
Light or darkness: the place will the road be drawn?
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Additional resources for A Dance of Shadows (Shadowdance, Book 4)
Disregarding this, what Bluebeard forbids his wife must be some kind of sexual knowledge or act, shown symbolically; what it is has 35 See an article by Yvonne Verdier, often reproduced or summarized: ‘Grandsmères, si vous saviez: Le Petit Chaperon rouge dans la tradition orale’, Cahiers de la littérature orale, 4 (1978); and Appendix A on Red Riding-Hood below. 36 Beast to Blonde, 244–6. Some of the comments she records make a connection with the sin of Eve, desire for sexual knowledge; but Eve was a virgin, unlike— presumably—Bluebeard’s wife.
The clearest cases are Sleeping Beauty and Red Riding-Hood, from which episodes known in other versions, such as the Prince’s violation of the unconscious girl and the wolf ’s treatment of the grandmother’s corpse, are absent; if Perrault knew them, as seems probable, he must have decided against them on the grounds that they would be found offensive, and made the necessary alterations. The result of all this is that the tales in prose, at least—the position is different with those in verse—became suited to the middle-class introduction xxxvii sensibilities of his time.
It becomes necessary to hide the offspring from the motherin-law, who behaves (leaving her ogreish propensities aside) like any other mother who suspects that her son is having an illicit affair. The story’s subject, then, has changed, and now concerns the notoriously difﬁcult relationship between a man’s wife and his mother—perhaps not a topic that might be expected in a fairy-tale. We can reconstruct the reasons for it by comparing Perrault’s tale with Basile’s earlier version. Here, the Prince who ﬁnds the sleeping Talia is already married, and takes advantage of her unconscious state to father twins on her; in due course, the jealous wife ﬁnds out, and seeks a dreadful revenge, exactly like Beauty’s mother-in-law.
A Dance of Shadows (Shadowdance, Book 4) by David Dalglish