Law of the Wolf Tower by Tanith Lee

293395Orphan-slave Claidi knows only the mindless rituals and cruelties of the House and the Garden, where the ruling families wallow in lavish extravagance. Then a golden stranger promises freedom if she will journey with him through the savage Waste.

Mad tribes and strange cities, enemies and friends where she least expects them, above all the Wolf Tower that broods over the grim stone city of her destiny; nothing – and no one – is as it seems.

If she is to survive, Claidi must learn fast – hone her wits, sharpen her instinct for danger…

Freedom demands that she confront the Law – once and for all..

Law of the Wolf Tower by Tanith Lee

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Published: 1998 by Hodder Children’s Books

Source: Library


Law of the Wolf Tower is a coming of age fantasy story which I’m sure my younger self would have embraced with much love too. Claidi’s journal carries asides and observations to the reader which are so fun, biting and unexpected with their wry humour. I did not expect to be so charmed by Claidi’s voice.

Tanith Lee’s poetic style paints this curious world. I love the original take and twist upon the servant-turned-princess-rescued-by-a-dashing-figure trope. I also enjoyed the realistic turns and revelations Claidi encounters while journeying through the desert.

This is the third story I’ve read by Tanith Lee where the heroines choose to leave these sheltered cities of privilege to explore a place that is both shunned and feared by society. Even though Claidi herself was a slave, she finds herself confronting her own assumptions about power as she meets more groups of people. (I should write up a post on speculative wastelands and surviving groups in the stories I’ve come across someday.) The desert also functions as a great metaphorical place for Claidi to find her feet and independence too.

If you enjoyed Tanith Lee’s YA Scifi coming of age story in The Silver Metal Lover, I’d definitely recommend the Wolf Tower because Claidi is just as flawed as Jane. Claidi is also perhaps, more likable in a way despite both going through similar character growth arcs. Thanks to Elizabeth for recommending Claidi’s journals to me. I have the sequel to read in my library book pile.

11 thoughts on “Law of the Wolf Tower by Tanith Lee

    1. Happy reading! I might read Black Unicorn next. The struggle to find paperback copies of her work is real >.<. Although I'm glad there are more ebook editions of her work being republished. If all else fails, it's a good place to go.


  1. This sounds lovely! I haven’t read any Tanith Lee books, the same!! Which would you rec for new readers.


    1. I’d definitely recommend The Wolf Tower (Claidi Journals 1) as a book for new readers! Her adult novels are a bit more eccentric, experimental and dark but her YA fantasy books are fun and probably more accessible for new (and old) readers.


  2. So excited to read some Tanith Lee, Glaiza, and all thanks to you! I had never heard of her before your featuring post, and her work just sounds so incredible. I’m pretty sure it’s Silver Metal Lover I’ve got coming from the library. I am all aquiver with excitement to see what it’s like. I’m also, probably because I was just talking about Diana Wynne Jones, wondering if it’s a little alike her storytelling feel?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope you enjoy it ^^ (but don’t worry if you don’t, the heroine in the Silver Metal Lover has very dramatic mood swings – online book clubbers were quite divided over her character. Though I love the world in it because I’ve never read anything quite like it.) I think Tanith Lee’s style is quite different from Diana Wynne Jones’ storytelling (but I’d recommend Philip Reeve’s steampunk Mortal Engines if you enjoy Jones’ style!)


  3. I’m glad you enjoyed it! I’m going to be very curious on what your thoughts are about the fourth book, so if you don’t post a review of it here, let me know on goodreads/twitter/somewhere!

    Liked by 1 person

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