book 2 of The Book of the Long Sun
by Gene Wolfe
Silk's life has become complicated: in order to save his manteion, he has compromised many of his principles by stealing, blackmailing, and even killing. Furthermore, his life is endangered by a revolution that appears to be forming around him. Lake of the Long Sun is full of action: Silk sees at least one ghost, is visited by several gods, and has a bizarre set of adventures in the tunnels below Viron, culminating in a look at the universe outside the Whorl and a run-in with some of Viron's corrupt leaders. In the latter episode Wolfe embeds a really nasty joke.
Wolfe's books always contain many veils. In The Book of the New Sun, not many veils were lifted; rather, Wolfe gave the reader enough information to guess at what lay behind some of them. The Book of the Long Sun is less oblique (and is therefore enjoyable to a wider audience, I'd guess), but it still requires slow and careful reading. Recommended.
copyright © 2000 John Regehr