Tigana

Last updated
Tigana
Tigana - bookcover.jpg
First edition cover
Author Guy Gavriel Kay
Cover artist Mel Odom
Country Canada
Language English
Genre Fantasy
Publisher Penguin Canada
Publication date
August 1990
Media typePrint
Pages673 pp.
ISBN 0-451-45028-0
OCLC 21332269

Tigana is a 1990 fantasy novel by Canadian writer Guy Gavriel Kay. The novel is set in a fictional world, in a region called the Peninsula of the Palm, which somewhat resembles Renaissance Italy as well as the Peloponnese in shape.

Contents

Setting

The world where Tigana takes place is a planet orbited by two moons. Kay notes that some of his readers tried to connect Tigana with A Song for Arbonne by speculating the stories take place on the same fictional world, orbited by two moons; [1] Kay explained that he only repeated the same theme rather than attempting to expand his canon. [2]

Action is centered on the Peninsula of the Palm which shares a common culture and language, but, like medieval Italy, is not a unified nation, comprising instead nine provinces with a long history of internecine struggle. The provinces are: Asoli, Astibar, Certando, Chiara, Corte, Ferraut, Senzio, Tigana, and Tregea. With great subtlety, Kay conveys the fact that all this takes place in the Southern Hemisphere of the unnamed world.

This internal conflict facilitates the conquest of the region by two powerful sorcerers: Brandin, the King of Ygrath, and Alberico, an independent warlord from the empire of Barbadior. The two sorcerers conquered simultaneously but independently the peninsula, and have divided it in an uneasy balance of power.

Mythology

The religion of the Palm is centered on a triad of deities, a God and two Goddesses; the one being his sister-wife and the other being their daughter. An annual feast celebrates the torment and deicide of the God by his sister-wife and daughter, their eating of his flesh, and his rebirth.

Riselka

The riselka is the only supernatural creature of the book. Based on the rusalka of Slavic folklore and mythology, its appearance in Kay's world is a token of some portent. A portion of it reads as follows:

One man sees a riselka: his life forks there.
Two men see a riselka: one of them shall die.
Three men see a riselka: one is blessed, one forks, one shall die.
One woman sees a riselka: her path comes clear to her.
Two women see a riselka: one of them shall bear a child.
Three women see a riselka: one is blessed, one is clear, one shall bear a child.

Plot

The plot focuses on a group of rebels attempting to overthrow both tyrants and win back their homeland. Many of the rebels are natives of the province of Tigana, which was the province that most ably resisted Brandin: In a crucial battle, Brandin's son was killed. In retaliation for this, Brandin attacked Tigana and crushed it more savagely than any other part of the Palm; then, following this victory, he used his magic to remove the name and history of Tigana from the minds of the population. Brandin named it Lower Corte, making Corte, their traditional enemies to their north, seem superior to a land that was all but forgotten.

Only those born in Tigana before the invasion can hear or speak its name, or remember it as it was; as far as everyone else is concerned, that area of the country has always been an insignificant part of a neighbouring province, hence the rebels are battling for the very soul of their country.

In the end the rebels engineer a battle between their two enemies hoping they will defeat each other. After victory, the magic preventing others from remembering the province of Tigana is removed.

Trivia

Kay says [3] that the province of Tigana, and thus the book, was – inadvertently – named after the soccer player Jean Tigana. Because of the name clash, the Italian edition of the novel uses the name Tigane instead.[ citation needed ]

Awards

Tigana was nominated for the 1991 World Fantasy Award—Novel and Aurora Award for Best Novel, winning the latter.

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Guy Gavriel Kay</span> Canadian novelist and poet (born 1954)

Guy Gavriel Kay is a Canadian writer of fantasy fiction. The majority of his novels take place in fictional settings that resemble real places during real historical periods, such as Constantinople during the reign of Justinian I or Spain during the time of El Cid. Kay has expressed a preference to avoid genre categorization of these works as historical fantasy. As of 2022, Kay has published 15 novels and a book of poetry. As of 2018, his fiction has been translated into at least 22 languages.

<i>The Fionavar Tapestry</i>

The Fionavar Tapestry is a trilogy of fantasy novels by Canadian author Guy Gavriel Kay, published between 1984 and 1986. The novels are partly set in our own contemporary world, but mostly in the fictional world of Fionavar. It is the story of five University of Toronto senior law and medical students, who are drawn into the 'first world of the Tapestry' by the mage Loren Silvercloak. Once there, each discovers his or her own role and destiny in the framework of an epic conflict.

<i>The Lions of Al-Rassan</i> 1995 novel by Guy Gavriel Kay

The Lions of Al-Rassan is a historical fantasy novel by Canadian writer Guy Gavriel Kay. It is set in a peninsula of the same world in which The Sarantine Mosaic and The Last Light of the Sun are set, and is based on Moorish Spain. The novel concentrates on the relationships between the three peoples: the Kindath, the Asharites, and the Jaddites, although the religions of the Kindath, Asharites, and Jaddites, as described in the novel, bear no relation to Judaism, Islam, and Christianity.

<i>The Summer Tree</i>

The Summer Tree is a 1984 novel written by Canadian fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay and the first book of The Fionavar Tapestry trilogy.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Etymology of California</span> Origin of the name California

Multiple theories regarding the origin of the name California, as well as the root language of the term, have been proposed, but most historians believe the name likely originated from a 16th-century novel, Las Sergas de Esplandián. The novel, popular at the time of the Spanish exploration of Mexico and the Baja California Peninsula, describes a fictional island named California, ruled by Queen Calafia, east of the Indies. The author of the novel, Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo, also known as Ordóñez de Montalvo, is thought to have derived the term California from the Arabic Khalif and/or Khalifa, but he might also have been influenced by the term "Califerne" in the 11th-century epic French poem The Song of Roland.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Jomsvikings</span> Order of Viking mercenaries

The Jomsvikings were a legendary order of Viking mercenaries or conquerors of the 10th and 11th centuries. Though reputed to be staunchly dedicated to the worship of the Old Norse gods, they would also fight for any lord who could pay their substantial fees, even if they may be Christian. The institution of the Jomsvikings would itself foreshadow those of the later religious and chivalric orders of the Middle Ages.

<i>Ysabel</i>

Ysabel is a fantasy novel by Canadian author Guy Gavriel Kay. It was first published in January 2007 by Viking Canada. It is Kay's first urban fantasy and his first book set outside his fantasied Europe milieux since the publication of his first three novels in the 1980s. Kay lived in the countryside near Aix-en-Provence, the setting of Ysabel, while he wrote it. The story tells of 15-year-old Ned Marriner who discovers his magical heritage while staying with his photographer father in Provence. He meets an American exchange student, the two become involved in an ancient "story" of love, sacrifice, and magic unfolding in the present day, which draws in Ned's family and friends.

Janeen Webb is an Australian writer, critic and editor, working mainly in the field of science fiction and fantasy.

"Sailing to Byzantium" is a poem by William Butler Yeats, first published in the 1928 collection The Tower. It comprises four stanzas in ottava rima, each made up of eight lines of iambic pentameter. It uses a journey to Byzantium (Constantinople) as a metaphor for a spiritual journey. Yeats explores his thoughts and musings on how immortality, art, and the human spirit may converge. Through the use of various poetic techniques, Yeats's "Sailing to Byzantium" describes the metaphorical journey of a man pursuing his own vision of eternal life as well as his conception of paradise.

<i>Universalis Ecclesiae</i> 1850 papal bull by Pope Pius IX re-establishing the Catholic diocesan hierarchy in England

Universalis Ecclesiae was a papal bull of 29 September 1850 by which Pope Pius IX recreated the Roman Catholic diocesan hierarchy in England, which had been extinguished with the death of the last Marian bishop in the reign of Elizabeth I. New names were given to the dioceses, as the old ones were in use by the Church of England. The bull aroused considerable anti-Catholic feeling among English Protestants.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Rusalka</span> Character in Slavic folklore

In Slavic folklore, the rusalka is a typically feminine entity, often malicious toward mankind and frequently associated with water, with counterparts in other parts of Europe, such as the French Melusine and the Germanic Nixie. Folklorists have proposed a variety of origins for the entity, including that they may originally stem from Slavic paganism, where they may have been seen as benevolent spirits. Rusalki appear in a variety of media in modern popular culture, particularly in Slavic language-speaking countries, where they frequently resemble the concept of the mermaid.

Glorious Revolution (Spain) 1868 revolution in Spain that deposed Queen Isabella II

The Glorious Revolution took place in Spain in 1868, resulting in the deposition of Queen Isabella II. The success of the revolution marked the beginning of the Sexenio Democrático with the installment of a provisional government.

Mel Odom is an American artist who has created book covers for numerous novels, including a number of paperback editions of the novels of Patrick White, the Australian winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, and several books by fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay such as The Fionavar Tapestry trilogy, Tigana, A Song for Arbonne, and The Lions of Al-Rassan. Dreamer, a collection of his work, with an introduction by Edmund White, was published by Penguin Books in 1984. Odom is also the designer of the Gene Marshall collectible fashion doll.

<i>Personal Demon</i>

Personal Demon, a fantasy novel published in 2008, is the eighth book in the Women of the Otherworld series written by Canadian author Kelley Armstrong. It is the first novel in the series to have more than one narrator and the first to include a male narrator.

<i>Under Heaven</i> (novel) 2010 fantasy novel by Guy Gavriel Kay

Under Heaven is a fantasy novel by Canadian author Guy Gavriel Kay. It is his eleventh novel and was published in April 2010 by Viking Canada. Set in a fantasied Tang China, it is Kay's first work set outside of a fantasied European or Mediterranean setting. The novel is based on a fictionalized version of the An Shi Rebellion. Under Heaven takes place in a completely new world, as seen by it having only one moon as opposed to the two moons normally present in Guy Gavriel Kay's works. In 2013 he published a second novel, River of Stars, set approximately 400 years later in the same world.

<i>River of Stars</i> 2013 fantasy novel by Guy Gavriel Kay

River of Stars is the twelfth novel by Canadian fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay. It was published in April 2013 by Roc Hardcover. It is Kay's second work set in an alternate history of China, taking place 400 years after his previous novel, Under Heaven. The novel is a fictionalized account of the Disaster of Jingkang and the beginning of the Jin–Song Wars during the Song Dynasty.

<i>A Song for Arbonne</i> 1992 novel by Guy Gavriel Kay

A Song for Arbonne is a novel by Canadian writer Guy Gavriel Kay published in 1992. It is set in a fantasy world with two moons and is loosely based on 12th-century Provence and the Albigensian Crusade.

<i>A Brightness Long Ago</i> 2019 novel by Guy Gavriel Kay

A Brightness Long Ago is a historical fantasy novel by Canadian writer Guy Gavriel Kay published in 2019 by Viking Press. It is inspired from the events of 15th-century Italy leading to the Italian Wars, and particularly the feud between Federico da Montefeltro and Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta.

<i>Children of Earth and Sky</i> 2016 novel by Guy Gavriel Kay

Children of Earth and Sky is a historical fantasy novel by Canadian writer Guy Gavriel Kay published in 2016. It was the first novel he wrote after receiving the Order of Canada.

References

  1. "Fiction Book Review: Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay, Author Roc $21.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-451-45028-9". PublishersWeekly.com. Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  2. Interview to Andrew A. Adams
  3. Jean-Louis Trudel. "Interview with Solaris". Solaris / Bright Weavings. Retrieved 5 May 2017.

Tigana at Guy Gavriel Kay's authorized website