Winner of the 1990 Nebula Award.
Synopses & Reviews
Classics of high fantasy, Ursula K. Le Guin's three previous Earthsea novels A Wizard Of Earthsea, The Tombs Of Atuan
, and The Farthest Shore
have been compared with J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings
and C.S Lewis's Narnia stories as being among the genre's greatest creations. Now the fourth and final volume, Tehanu
, brings to a conclusion the remarkable Earthsea cycle with a revelation of wisdom, wonder, and literary wizardry.
Once she'd been a priestess, quest-companion to a powerful mage, a student of high magic. Then she gave it all up to be a farmer's wife on Gont, content to lead a simple life. But Tenar was not born to live her days in peace, away from great events. A dying wizard and an abused child were the first to call her back to the path she had abandoned. For the end of the adventure beckoned and Tenar would be there along with the dragons, mages, and the young king himself to share in the unforgettable fate of the kingdom known as Earthsea.
"Tehanu is a major novel by a major novelist. It is deceptively short, and written in a deceptively simple style....The very best thing about this novel is its sense of growth, of distance traveled as well as time passed. The Earthsea trilogy is deservedly considered a classic. Ursula Le Guin shows courage in writing a sequel to an accomplished series that demonstrated the full but traditional intellectual and magical gifts of wizards who were always male. The astonishing clearsightedness of Tehanu is in its recognition of the necessary and life-giving contributions of female magic sometimes disguised as domesticity....Tehanu isn't a children's book. Young readers of the Earthsea trilogy should be obliged to wait a decade or two before they read it. Adults may read the quartet as a finished work." Robin McKinley, The New York Times Book Review
"A tale with the universality and dignity of legend....Consummately imagined....A grand conclusion to a revered cycle." Kirkus Reviews
"Tenar's struggle to protect and nurture a defenseless child and Ged's slow recovery make painful but thrilling reading. Sharply defined characterizations give rich resonance to Tehanu's themes of aging, feminism, and child abuse as well as its emotional chords of grief and loss. Tehanu is a heartbreaking farewell to a world that is passing, and is full of tantalizing hints of the new world to come. Fans of the Earthsea trilogy will be deeply moved." Publishers Weekly
"In a tale that takes as its theme the nature of a woman's place and power, the Archmage, Ged, has returned to Gont stripped of his powers. Tenar, the heroine of The Tombs of Atuan and now a widow, is raising a disfigured and abused child who clearly has an unusual destiny in store. A beautiful expression of mature love; a thoughtful, brilliant achievement." Horn Book
About the Author
Ursula K. Le Guin was born in 1929 in Berkeley, California. She has written more than a hundred short stories. Among her honors are a National Book Award, five Hugo and five Nebula awards, the Kafka Award, a Pushcart Prize, and the Harold D. Vursell Memorial Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She lives in Portland, Oregon.