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Shon knew that the Taken must die. Death had touched them, and the evil spirits which issued from Death's Place to the east beyond the valley Took away the souls of the living. It was the law of Shon's people, who seldom ventured far from their simple huthouses in Pine Walk, except to hunt boar in the forest. And even the forest was not completely safe, for across the river at its eastern edge lay Crow Mork, Death's Place, and in the stories Crow himself, who was Death, rode there with Crow's People, Death's children, on strange four-legged beasts shod with white metal and swift as the wind.
Lost in the dark forest, Shon encountered Death's Children. 'Don't go home,' the dead girl told him - he was almost sure it was a girl, though her face was a black void in the night. But there was nowhere else to go. They would kill him, of course; being Taken, they would have to.
Yet Shon escaped that death - though he was to meet Death in Death's Place, and learn the extraordinary truth about it.
Tanith Lee (1947-2015)Tanith Lee was born in London in 1947. She is the author of more than 70 novels and almost 300 short stories, and has also written radio plays for the BBC and two scripts for the cult television series Blake's 7. Her first short story, 'Eustace', was published in 1968, and her first children's novel The Dragon Hoard was published in 1971. In 1975 her adult fantasy epic The Birthgrave was published to international acclaim, and Lee maintained a prolific output in popular genre writing throughout her life. She twice won the World Fantasy Award, and was a Guest of Honour at numerous science fiction and fantasy conventions including the 1984 World Fantasy Convention in Ottawa, Canada. In 2009 she was awarded the prestigious title of Grand Master of Horror, and in 2013 she was given the World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievement. Tanith Lee was married to author and artist John Kaiine. She died in May, 2015.