This is book number 2 in the The Singing Hills Cycle series.
"A stunning gem of a novella that explores the complexity and layers of storytelling and celebrates the wonder of queer love. I could read about Chih recording tales forever."—Samantha Shannon, New York Times bestselling author of The Priory of the Orange Tree
"Dangerous, subtle, unexpected and familiar, angry and ferocious and hopeful. . . . The Empress of Salt and Fortune is a remarkable accomplishment of storytelling."—NPR
The cleric Chih finds themself and their companions at the mercy of a band of fierce tigers who ache with hunger. To stay alive until the mammoths can save them, Chih must unwind the intricate, layered story of the tiger and her scholar lover—a woman of courage, intelligence, and beauty—and discover how truth can survive becoming history.
Nghi Vo returns to the empire of Ahn and The Singing Hills Cycle in When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain, a mesmerizing, lush standalone follow-up to The Empress of Salt and Fortune.
"Dazzling. . . . Readers who missed Vo’s debut will have no trouble following the second leg of Chih’s travels, and those returning will be pleased to sink into another lush, sophisticated story of queer love and survival."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
"You don’t have to read Nghi Vo’s debut in order to follow this second short novel, but you’ll want to! Feminist, layered and queer AF, Nghi Vo’s storytelling will mesmerize you. You should probably just read them both."—Ms. Magazine
"As a piece of fantasy literature, Vo’s worldbuilding is a command performance... We are in a golden age of the novella, and Vo knows how to make the most of the form, with short, propelling chapters and potent ideas. The world is scaffolded off real history and folk traditions but feels fresh and interesting, and Vo once again succeeds in using a scholarly, contemplative protagonist to tease deep emotion and significance out of old stories. It’s an incredibly, quietly skilled and entertaining accomplishment."—The Chicago Review of Books
"So good I want to marry it."—Martha Wells, New York Times bestselling author of The Murderbot Diaries
"Reads like a combination of my bà ngo?i's bedtime stories and a sharply self-aware queer retelling. Plus sapphic excellence."—Aliette de Bodard, winner of the Locus, Nebula, and British Fantasy Awards
"Vo is my favorite fantasy debut of 2020."—Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
"This lyrical story of the cleric Chih unraveling the story of a ravenous tiger is unforgettably original and gorgeously written."—PopSugar
Praise for The Empress of Salt and Fortune
"Dangerous, subtle, unexpected and familiar, angry and ferocious and hopeful... The Empress of Salt and Fortune is a remarkable accomplishment of storytelling."—NPR
"Gorgeous. Cruel. Perfect."—Seanan McGuire
"A quiet, wrenching tale of resistance, resilience, and court intrigue."—R. F. Kuang
"A tale of rebellion and fealty that feels both classic and fresh, The Empress of Salt and Fortune is elegantly told, strongly felt, and brimming with rich detail. An epic in miniature, beautifully realised."—Zen Cho