The Scar by Sergey and Marina Dyachenko

Where did he come from and where is he going? He wanders the world like the constellations wander the sky. He roams along the dust-laden roads and only his shadow dares to follow in his footsteps.

It is said that he possesses great powers, but they are not of this world.

Even the mages avoid him, for he is not subject to them. Whoever stands in his way, either through the whim of fate or through his own folly, curses the day of that encounter.

His intentions are unknown. The roads serve him like dogs.

The mountain heights and the pebbles of the far sea; the hills, ravines and fields; the forests and foothills; the plains and shores; the lanes and highways: all hide his secrets.

It is said that he will roam and wander eternally. Take care not to meet him, either in a crowded fair or in a hermit’s den – for he is everywhere.

And if one day you should hear the footsteps of the Wanderer at your door…

Several weeks ago, I gushed enthusiastically about the cover art for The Scar by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko, a well-respected novel by the Ukranian authors that is finally being translated and brought to English readers. I love the idea of tackling Fantasy from the perspective of writers from different cultures than the usual UK/North American/Australian writers, so this is firmly on my radar, but I can’t say that this excerpt has me too excited; a lot of passive, overly complicated writing:

The room became quiet immediately, so quiet that the landlady stuck her inflamed, purple nose out of her kitchen. The revelers looked around in mute amazement, as if they expected to see the menacing Spirit Lash on the smoke-fouled ceiling. Bewildered, at first Ita just opened her mouth, but then, finally realizing what had happened, she dropped an empty jug on the floor.


Still, you can read the excerpt from The Scar by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko and judge for yourself.