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Demon Night

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She lived in a savage world in an uncivilized age - a world ruled by men and governed by the sword. They called her Red Sonja - for her flame red hair and the smoldering fire of her pride. Falsely charged with the murder of a commander to whom she had sworn allegiance, Red Sonja must flee or be killed without a chance to clear her name. Deep in the desert she encounters th She lived in a savage world in an uncivilized age - a world ruled by men and governed by the sword. They called her Red Sonja - for her flame red hair and the smoldering fire of her pride. Falsely charged with the murder of a commander to whom she had sworn allegiance, Red Sonja must flee or be killed without a chance to clear her name. Deep in the desert she encounters the city of Elkad, and, exhausted, seeks shelter there. She enters the city against her better judgment, for hanging before the gates are the shriveling bodies of six young women, clearly the victims of some blood-thirsty ritual.....


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She lived in a savage world in an uncivilized age - a world ruled by men and governed by the sword. They called her Red Sonja - for her flame red hair and the smoldering fire of her pride. Falsely charged with the murder of a commander to whom she had sworn allegiance, Red Sonja must flee or be killed without a chance to clear her name. Deep in the desert she encounters th She lived in a savage world in an uncivilized age - a world ruled by men and governed by the sword. They called her Red Sonja - for her flame red hair and the smoldering fire of her pride. Falsely charged with the murder of a commander to whom she had sworn allegiance, Red Sonja must flee or be killed without a chance to clear her name. Deep in the desert she encounters the city of Elkad, and, exhausted, seeks shelter there. She enters the city against her better judgment, for hanging before the gates are the shriveling bodies of six young women, clearly the victims of some blood-thirsty ritual.....

30 review for Demon Night

  1. 4 out of 5

    Tim Martin

    Second book in the Red Sonja novel series, I was curious to read it after reading the first installment, _Ring of Ikribu_, I wanted to know if some of the positives of the first volume (a decent supporting cast, at least one other strong female character, Red Sonja not being sexualized, decent monsters, and decent combat scenes) continued and if some of the negatives (Red Sonja not actually essential to her own story) were remedied. The positives continued (if anything Sonja was even less sexual Second book in the Red Sonja novel series, I was curious to read it after reading the first installment, _Ring of Ikribu_, I wanted to know if some of the positives of the first volume (a decent supporting cast, at least one other strong female character, Red Sonja not being sexualized, decent monsters, and decent combat scenes) continued and if some of the negatives (Red Sonja not actually essential to her own story) were remedied. The positives continued (if anything Sonja was even less sexualized, not that she was viewed that way much at all in the first novel) but the negatives? Eh a bit, maybe. The story got going a lot faster than _Ring of Ikribu_, pretty much jumping right into the action. Sonja is accused of murdering a commander of a fort in Zamora, a Captain Vos (who we never see or meet, as he is already dead before the book begins). Sonja has to flee in the middle of the night in the first few pages of the novel. Sonja suspects that Vos was killed by the now new commander of the frontier fort, Keldum, and makes her way east of the fort, onto the steppe, hoping to avoid being captured and killed. Keldum won’t let Red Sonja get away and pursues her with a large number of soldiers (two hundred I believe), most of whom are faceless and nameless save two, Keldum’s second in command, Gevem (who is an important figure in the book) and Peth, a strange, perhaps not evil mercenary who can roll the bones to perform divinations. Continuing for a few tense pages, scenes of Sonja and the soldiers chasing each other across the wide, open steppe, both wary of resting but not wanting to kill their mounts, things look grim for Sonja until she finds an unexpected city in the grassland, one where she can at least get some food, fodder for her horse, and maybe rest under shelter. However, she understandably hesitates, for outside the city are six young women, dead, hanging outside and beaten and drained of blood. More angry than fearful over this discovery, Sonja decides she has little choice and makes her way into the city (the city of Elkad) because she does need rest and supplies (though she resolves to bring up the disgusting loss of life any chance she gets). To say much more is spoiler territory, but it involves intrigue within the city, including the city’s two rulers (Hefei, a heavyset female ruler and Mophis, a high priest, “tall, cadaverous, pale as the wind”), a younger priest who seems good in nature (by the name of Sost), his semi-forbidden friend, a temple virgin and potential one day sacrifice (Tiamu; the two are obviously in love with one another and though their sect allows them to talk forbids a relationships aside from a casual friendship), and later a sorcerer/god just outside the city who may or may not be good (or his idea of good might in fact be either outright evil or at the very least rather cavalier on the idea of friendly fire and collateral casualties), oh and a prophecy that may involved a red-haired warrior (could it be a woman people ask in astonishment) and, maybe, perhaps Tiamu (spoiler, it does). Oh and also the plot (and the prophecy) gets tied up in defeating a vague threat called the Earth-folk, unseen, evil, bloodthirsty beings the sacrifices were intended for and everyone in the city lives in fear of, giving the area a vague sense of evil that everyone, including Sonja, can feel. Can the Earth-folk be defeated? What are they exactly? Are they the real threat, or is the priesthood (or both)? Some good combat scenes, a lot less monsters than the first volume in the series (and sorry if this is spoiler, but the Earth-folk are largely kept vague, faces in glowing red mist sort of spiritual creatures that surprisingly don’t figure into most of the novel). Lots of back and forth inside and outside the city as various characters go back and forth almost in a revolving door. Sometimes motivations could be strange (when Gevem casually murders one of the palace guards in Elkad but most of all Keldum’s Captain Ahab-esque obsession with capturing Red Sonja, an obsession that leads him to abandon his fort, see his men whittled down, pass up on riches along the way, to obtain a woman who clearly does not want him, though to be fair his obsession may be wrapped up in the prophecy involving defeat of the Earth-folk). However, just like _Ring of Ikribu_, Sonja doesn’t kill all of the villains this time around (arguably there are more than the two of the last book, but she only kills one of them in this novel and again the defeat of one of them is completely off camera and not “seen” by the reader). If anything, Sonja once again acts as a catalyst to propel another female character to growth (in _Ring of Ikribu_ it was Tias, this time Tiamu, with Tiamu a much more fleshed out and sympathetic character, looking almost like the writers are honing their craft a bit or getting a better feel of what they want to do). Absolutely nothing wrong with advancing the growth and destiny of a secondary female character, I just find it remarkable. I continue to find the setting sort of fantasy generic, very thin, as I struggle to remember the name of a place and to get any sense of place or local color (say in comparison to Gondor, the Shire, Waterdeep, or any of the places in Peter Brett’s Demon Cycle saga or the world of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series). Every place might vary in what horrible thing is bedeviling it, but all seem cut of the same cloth as far as arms, armor, architecture, etc. though both novels did give some sense of the natural history of the place: “Turning, she saw one of the scrawny steppe-birds sitting on a nearby shrub, and was astonished. Those birds were so lean and bedraggled that they appeared half dead, and never had Sonja heard one sing. Yet this one was trilling a song that seemed born of true joy.” Maybe not quite the thrush Bilbo Baggins and the Dwarves encountered on Lonely Mountain, but it is a start. I would like more details like this, more of a feel that the world Red Sonja carves her way through is real and a place. That more than anything has been my main problem with the Hyborian stories I have read in comics and in novel form, that the world doesn’t feel as vivid and alive as it could be, though perhaps this is a necessary side effect of avoiding the trappings and tropes of epic high fantasy with its continent-spanning adventures and grand destinies that span whole series of books (with these Hyborian stories more akin to gunslinger Westerns; a stranger like Red Sonja riding into town, dealing with the local evil, and off to another episodic adventure, probably involving killing a sorcerer, his monster buddies, and a few treacherous swordsmen while she helps good local people).

  2. 5 out of 5

    Aaron Meyer

    I think the collaboration between the two authors was much better done in this second book than the first. The story flowed very well. In this book you find that Sonja is not the only focal point in the story but just one of many. This story is one of main ones which had stuck with me since I read it thirty years ago. There is something almost biblical in the wrath which takes place and the characters who play out their allotted parts. Even the part where Tiamu is struggling to hold up the wand I think the collaboration between the two authors was much better done in this second book than the first. The story flowed very well. In this book you find that Sonja is not the only focal point in the story but just one of many. This story is one of main ones which had stuck with me since I read it thirty years ago. There is something almost biblical in the wrath which takes place and the characters who play out their allotted parts. Even the part where Tiamu is struggling to hold up the wand reminds me of Moses and the battle he is holding up his staff for victory. Good story, worth the rereading.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Thom Roads

    Thank Mitra that a book about Red Sonja, warrior of Hyrkania, has so many men in it to get everything done! Hells, that explicitly stated fifteen year old girl wasn't going to rape herself was she? This book was bullshit. Thank Mitra that a book about Red Sonja, warrior of Hyrkania, has so many men in it to get everything done! Hells, that explicitly stated fifteen year old girl wasn't going to rape herself was she? This book was bullshit.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Charles

    I would probably never have picked these books up if I hadn't known the author from other things. The reason is that these are pastiches based upon the comic book character Red Sonja, who was based, in turn, upon the Red SonYa created by Robert E. Howard. That meant that Smith had to labor under some tough conditions to produce these books, but he achieved a notable series of stories. There's a lot of fast paced action and the character comes through much better in these books than in the Sonja I would probably never have picked these books up if I hadn't known the author from other things. The reason is that these are pastiches based upon the comic book character Red Sonja, who was based, in turn, upon the Red SonYa created by Robert E. Howard. That meant that Smith had to labor under some tough conditions to produce these books, but he achieved a notable series of stories. There's a lot of fast paced action and the character comes through much better in these books than in the Sonja comics. The books are very fast paced and keep you reading.

  5. 4 out of 5

    BroDan270

    Tak ako sa človek trmáca vlastným životom a prediera všetkými nástrahami a nešťastiami, ktoré mu prídu do cesty, sa aj ja predieram knihami a vždy čakám, či príde ešte väčšia hlúposť, ktorú dočítať je skutočný boj. Prejdem ale k podstate. Táto "kniha" je ten najväčší odpad, aký som kedy čítal. Každý kúsok textu je pretkaný nezmyselnými, neprirodzenými a nudnými dialógmi, ktoré dej nikam neposúvajú a postavy sa v nich 10x opakujú. Autori sa nevyhli úplne nezmyselným chybám, ako bolo napríklad to, Tak ako sa človek trmáca vlastným životom a prediera všetkými nástrahami a nešťastiami, ktoré mu prídu do cesty, sa aj ja predieram knihami a vždy čakám, či príde ešte väčšia hlúposť, ktorú dočítať je skutočný boj. Prejdem ale k podstate. Táto "kniha" je ten najväčší odpad, aký som kedy čítal. Každý kúsok textu je pretkaný nezmyselnými, neprirodzenými a nudnými dialógmi, ktoré dej nikam neposúvajú a postavy sa v nich 10x opakujú. Autori sa nevyhli úplne nezmyselným chybám, ako bolo napríklad to, že počas jednej scény bolo počasie slnečné a počas ďalšej (ktorá sa ale odohrávala v ten istý čas len pár metrov ďalej) bolo počasie zase sychravé. Najviac ma pobavila veta "Světlá pochodní na chodbě mizeli v temnote." Vysvetli mi niekto, ako je možné že svetlo mizne v temnote? (nejde o žiadnu mágiu, proste obyčajné svetlo a obyčajná tma). Tiamu, ktorá prvýkrát ani nevedela udržať meč v ruke, sa naučila šermovať za jeden deň? Vau, to je talent! A hlavná postava? Rudá Sonja? Ak mám byť úprimný, je to uškriekaná, sprostá a primitívna puritánka, ktorá vo vás len spení krv. Najviac ma pobavilo, keď ju niekto oslovil "ó múdra Sonja" :D Ale to už stačí, nechcem znieť ako ufňukané decko a sťažovať sa na každý detail (je ich ešte neúrekom)...preto to zhrniem. Odpad, ktorý nemá právo nazývať sa knihou. Tejto druhej časti som nakoniec dal nádej, ale pochybil som. Tretej sa už ani len nedotknem. Aby bol ale môj komentár plnohodnotný, knihu som dočítal do konca a toto utrpenie dobojoval dokonca. Kto vie? Možno že bude posledných 10 strán tak dobrých, že zmením názor. Bohužiaľ sa tam nachádzali len ďalšie nezmyselné a otrasné dialógy protivných postáv. Hrôza! Hodnotenie 1*, dal by som 0, keby sa dalo...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Dumcum

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. As with the first novel in the series, Sonja was mainly an observer; she wasn’t even at the climatic battle. Also, her name is Sonja. She has auburn hair and a fiery temperament, thus the “Red” descriptor. “Red” is not her first name, despite the many, many characters who call her such.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Helmut

    Dämonische Kräfte Neulich in einer Forumsdiskussion bei amazon.de wurde ich als Faschist bezeichnet, weil ich glaube, dass es Leute gibt, die etwas einfach besser können als andere (in diesem speziellen Fall ging es um Beurteilung von guter und schlechter Literatur), und ich lieber von solchen Leuten angeleitet werde als von der durchschnittlichen Masse. Dieses Buch hier geht noch einen Schritt weiter: In der Welt der Roten Sonja gibt es scheinbar sogenannte "true spirits", Menschen, deren Seele Dämonische Kräfte Neulich in einer Forumsdiskussion bei amazon.de wurde ich als Faschist bezeichnet, weil ich glaube, dass es Leute gibt, die etwas einfach besser können als andere (in diesem speziellen Fall ging es um Beurteilung von guter und schlechter Literatur), und ich lieber von solchen Leuten angeleitet werde als von der durchschnittlichen Masse. Dieses Buch hier geht noch einen Schritt weiter: In der Welt der Roten Sonja gibt es scheinbar sogenannte "true spirits", Menschen, deren Seele nicht wie beim normalen Menschen mit dem Tod stirbt, sondern weiterwandert. Das ist nun allerdings auch für mich ein fragwürdiges Konzept, das die Menschen in hochwertige und minderwertige Wesen abgruppiert, aber in eine Fantasywelt passt sowas halt schon, eine Welt, die von Übermenschen lebt. Den ersten Teil der Reihe, The Ring of Ikribu, hatte ich übelst runtergemacht - die totale Entkopplung der Welt "Hyboria" der Roten Sonja von dem "Hyboria" Conans ist hier nun immer noch spürbar, doch der Roman funktioniert trotzdem wunderbar: Die Autoren haben dazugelernt. Es ist immer noch keine hohe Literatur, und reicht auch bei weitem nicht an die Werke Robert E. Howards heran, aber der Roman ist doch in sich sehr stimmig aufgebaut, mit einer mitreißenden Handlung und einem äußerst spannenden, wirklich gut gemachten Klimax, in dem die Protagonisten allerdings mehr Zuschauer ist, als sich das Schicksal einer einsam gelegenen Stadt zwischen Menschenopfer darbringenden Priestern, die Stadtmauern belagernden Zamoranern und geheimnisvollen, nach Blut dürstenden Dämonenwesen entscheidet... Das Ace-Paperback weist bereits nach 30 Jahren extreme Vergilbung auf, das kommt davon, wenn man am falschen Ende, hier halt am Papier, spart. Eine passende Illustration (ich glaube, das ist Vallejo oder ein Vallejo-Imitator) wertet das Buch allerdings etwas auf - auch wenn sie Red Sonja etwas auf Ihren Körper reduziert, was ihr in den Geschichten ja aber auch dauernd passiert. Nun bin ich sehr gespannt, ob die Reihe mit Band 3 so gut weitermachen oder auf die Stufe von Band 1 zurückfallen wird.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Wade

    Red Sonja's second prose adventure has the Hyrkanian on the run from charges of murder. She encounters an isolated city in the wilderness that has its very own religion, involving quite a lot of human sacrifices... As good as the first book is, the second work by Tierney and Smith shows them getting the hang of their unique protagonist. With Red Sonja established, they have room to make the story is a but more complex, and the supporting cast are a lot more complex. You actually start caring for Red Sonja's second prose adventure has the Hyrkanian on the run from charges of murder. She encounters an isolated city in the wilderness that has its very own religion, involving quite a lot of human sacrifices... As good as the first book is, the second work by Tierney and Smith shows them getting the hang of their unique protagonist. With Red Sonja established, they have room to make the story is a but more complex, and the supporting cast are a lot more complex. You actually start caring for some of them and cheering them on. A good read and the resolution at the end feels really good.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Robert Fenske

    A nice quick read that is fairly entertaining with several classic Fantasy elements of the genre. I did enjoy that this tale showed Red Sonja as simply a tool within a prophecy rather than her just on some random adventure. Her actions act as a catalyst for several characters introduced in this story for them to finally fulfill the prophecy. The only weak point that I didn't find satisfying was the motive of the human antagonist that is hunting Red Sonja. A nice quick read that is fairly entertaining with several classic Fantasy elements of the genre. I did enjoy that this tale showed Red Sonja as simply a tool within a prophecy rather than her just on some random adventure. Her actions act as a catalyst for several characters introduced in this story for them to finally fulfill the prophecy. The only weak point that I didn't find satisfying was the motive of the human antagonist that is hunting Red Sonja.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Wilmot Mason

    many strange things about life

  11. 5 out of 5

    Will George

  12. 4 out of 5

    Brad

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ruby González

  14. 4 out of 5

    Hilde

  15. 4 out of 5

    Darin

  16. 4 out of 5

    Meg

  17. 5 out of 5

    Ian Korman

  18. 5 out of 5

    Joel Alex

  19. 4 out of 5

    Vincent77f

  20. 4 out of 5

    Michael

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay Kennedy Sauer

  22. 5 out of 5

    James

  23. 4 out of 5

    Joe

  24. 5 out of 5

    Terry

  25. 5 out of 5

    Richard

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jason Ayer

  27. 4 out of 5

    Michael

  28. 5 out of 5

    Rich

  29. 4 out of 5

    John

  30. 5 out of 5

    Derek

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