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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
The Nameless Day is a departure of sorts for Australian fantasy author Sara Douglass (The Wayfarer Redemption, Enchanter, Threshold, et al.). This offering is an alternate history that takes place in 14th-century Europe, an age of unprecedented catastrophe that included plagues, wars, political and religious upheaval -- and the unleashed minions of Hell!
The story revolves around Thomas Neville, an English nobleman turned Dominican friar. While studying in Rome, Neville is visited by the Archangel Michael, who sends him on a quest to find a book of incantations stored in a casket that belonged to a long-dead friar, Wynkyn de Worde, a man whose life was shrouded in mystery. The angel enlightens Neville about de Worde's secret task: to journey twice a year to a remote place known as the Cleft, the gateway to Hell, where the friar would send wayward demons back to the netherworld. In the decades since the friar's death, evil has run rampant. Neville must find the book and rid the world of the demons before humanity is irreparably corrupted. It may already be too late.
Fans of epic historical fiction adventures like Neal Stephenson's Baroque Cycle and Stephen R. Lawhead's Celtic Crusade saga (The Iron Lance, The Mystic Rose, et al.) will undoubtedly enjoy The Nameless Day, which combines historical characters and events with the supernatural forces of God and Satan. There are nightmarish demons and awe-inspiring angels aplenty in this masterful tale of good versus evil. (The second volume of the Crucible trilogy, entitled The Wounded Hawk, is scheduled for release in January 2005.) Paul Goat Allen