In the midpoint novel of the "Demon Princes" series, Kirth Gersen sets his sights upon the mysterious Viole Falushe. Vance describes this murderous creature as a "sybarite." "Sadistic pervert" would probably be a more apropos phrase. After several false leads, Gersen backtracks the villain to his point of origin - Earth, of all places! Then the trail moves outward again, to the starworlds and a place back of beyond where there is actually a physical Palace of Love.
Jack Vance (1916-2013)
John Holbrook Vance was born in 1916 and studied mining, engineering and journalism at the University of California. During the Second World War he served in the merchant navy and was torpedoed twice. He started contributing stories to the pulp magazines in the mid 1940s and published his first book, The Dying Earth, in 1950. Among his many books are The Dragon Masters, for which he won his first Hugo Award, Big Planet, The Anome, and the Lyonesse sequence. He has won the Hugo, Nebula and World Fantasy Awards, amongst others, and in 1997 was named a Grand Master by the Science Fiction Writers of America.