Moon Witch, Spider King by Marlon James
From Marlon James, author of the bestselling National Book Award finalist Black Leopard, Red Wolf, the second book in the Dark Star trilogy, his African Game of Thrones.
In Black Leopard, Red Wolf, Sogolon the Moon Witch proved a worthy adversary to Tracker as they clashed across a mythical African landscape in search of a mysterious boy who disappeared. In Moon Witch, Spider King, Sogolon takes center stage and gives her own account of what happened to the boy, and how she plotted and fought, triumphed and failed as she looked for him. It’s also the story of a century-long feud—seen through the eyes of a 177-year-old witch—that Sogolon had with the Aesi, chancellor to the king. It is said that Aesi works so closely with the king that together they are like the eight limbs of one spider. Aesi’s power is considerable—and deadly. It takes brains and courage to challenge him, which Sogolon does for reasons of her own.
Both a brilliant narrative device—seeing the story told in Black Leopard, Red Wolf from the perspective of an adversary and a woman—as well as a fascinating battle between different versions of empire, Moon Witch, Spider King delves into Sogolon’s world as she fights to tell her own story. Part adventure tale, part chronicle of an indomitable woman who bows to no man, it is a fascinating novel that explores power, personality, and the places where they overlap.
Story Locale: Mythical Africa
Series Overview: Three characters—Tracker, the Moon Witch, and the Boy—are locked in a dungeon in the castle of a dying king, awaiting torture and trial for the death of a mysterious child. They were three of eight mercenaries who had been hired to find a particular child who had been missing for three years. The search, expected to take two months, took nine years. In the end, five of the eight mercenaries, as well as the child, were dead. What happened? Where did their stories begin? And how did each story end? These are the questions posed in the Dark Star Trilogy, three novels set amid African legend and Marlon James’ expansive imagination.