The Gifts of Asti

Cover image for


Author: Andre Norton
Published: 1948
Language: English
Wordcount: 7,116 / 27 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 84.3
LoC Category: PN
Downloads: 6,640
Added to site: 2006.08.12 14667
License: ©

Varta, the last priestess of Asti, lives alone with Lur, a telepath of the lizardfolk, in Asti's isolated mountain retreat. Decadent Memphir has long since drifted away from the austere paths of Asti, and now the barbarians of Klem are sacking the city, and the smoke of its burning drifts up to the temple. This short story was produced from Fantasy Book Vol. 1, No. 3, published in 1948. Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that the copyright on this publication was renewed.

Show Excerpt

uster of the fruit, dead ripe with the sweet pulp stretching its skin. But below the surface of the water--

Varta's breath hissed between her teeth and Lur's head snapped around as he caught her thought.

The branch below the water bore a perfect circle of green flowers close to its tip, the flowers which the turbi had borne naturally seven months before and which should long ago have turned into just such sweetness as hung above.

With Lur at her heels the girl edged around to pull cautiously at the branch. It yielded at once to her touch, swinging its tip out of the lake. She sniffed--there was a languid perfume in the air, the perfume of the blooming turbi. She examined the flowers closely, to all appearances they were perfect and natural.

"It preserves," Lur settled back on his haunches and waved one front paw at the quiet water. "What goes into it remains as it was just at the moment of entrance."

"But if this is seven months old--"

"It may be seven years old," cor


Average Rating of 5 from 2 reviews: *****
Sardo Weems

A simple "escape from marauding hordes into danger and wonder" story, but with fully-fleshed characters and great plotting. Good writing shouldn't look so easy.

Worth reading.

This short story is an excellent example of Norton's early work. Themes and style that will dominate her later writing are already present. The destruction of the human civilization and its humble resurrection, knowledgeable evil and naive good, the struggle of good people to gain forgotten knowledge: these themes are rich and developed. Her elegant style, abbreviated yet dynamic, moves the story quickly from scene to scene, leaving the reader's imagination to fill in the details.

(Promote your book here)

Featured Books

Cover image for The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton - Free eBook

Nefertiti's Heart

The Artifact Hunters Book 1
A.W. Exley

Cara Devon has always suffered curiosity and im... Read more

Cover image for The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton - Free eBook

Astray in Couper

Matty Cruz Adventure Book 1
R. Marquez

When the economic downturn ends Matty Cruz’s co... Read more

Cover image for The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton - Free eBook


Annelie Wendeberg

Our world changed - our climate, our ecosystems... Read more

Cover image for The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton - Free eBook


Psionic Pentalogy Book 1
Adrian Howell

A telekinetic teenager. A telepathic child. A p... Read more

Cover image for The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton - Free eBook


A Dystopian Trilogy Book 1
Peter R. Stone

A century after an apocalyptic war reduces all... Read more

Cover image for The Gifts of Asti by Andre Norton - Free eBook

Where Angels Tread

Kensington Family Novels Book 1
Clare Kenna

Fall in love with the Kensington siblings in th... Read more

login | register

User ID


reset password

Help ManyBooks by sharing this page!

See it as donating a moment of your social media time, every little thing helps us improve and stay online.

Popular in This Genre

The list of books below is based on the weekly downloads by our users regardless of eReader device or file format.

Nefertiti's Heart
by A.W. Exley
by Adrian Howell
by Théophile Gautier
The Arabian Nights
by Andrew Lang
Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter
by Nikki Jefford
Alice in Wonderland
by Lewis Carroll
The Time Machine
by H.G. Wells
by Brandon Sanderson
Gulliver's Travels
by Jonathan Swift
Beauty and the Beast
by Anonymous

See more popular titles from this genre.