Andre Alice Norton was one of the best and most prolific science-fiction writers ot the 20th century. She was the first woman to win the Gandalf Grand Master Award from the World Science Fiction Society in 1977, and she won the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America 1983. Publisher's Weekly called her, "One of the most popular authors of our time," and the Chicago Tribune said she was a "...superb storyteller whose skill draws the reader completely into a fantastic other world." In this story, barbarian hordes overtake a peaceful planet, which forces the final temple virgin of Asti and her faithful companion, Lur, to flee. They embark on an adventure that leads both of them to a a secret world and the discovery of a new destiny.More
Alice Mary Norton, known to her mostly male readers as Andre Alice Norton, was the first woman to be inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame, among many other august honors. A prolific spinner of science fiction and fantasy yarns, Norton here brings the listener to the planet of Asti, a peaceful place that has been conquered by a barbarian tribe. Our heroine is Varta, last of the virgin maidens, who must flee her home for safety in a secret world. Tenderly performed by veteran Cindy Hardin Killavey, "The Gifts of Asti" feature sensuous descriptions of the beautiful Varta, archly archaic dialogue, and rich depictions of a world not our own.
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- NJ Miller