Jones, Howard Andrew -- The Desert of Souls

A novel which is actually set in the fantasy Arabian-Nightsian Baghdad that all the Prince of Persia games pretend to be set in. (I don't blame Jordan Mechner -- he was young and enthusiastic when he wrote his first game -- but it's nice to see someone going back to the source material.) Assassins, djinn (scary ones, wish at your own risk), zombie monkeys, a pair of magic doorknobs (from the lost city of Ubar) -- but also the caliph's dealings with the Byzantines, the Zoroastrian cult, the Bedouins, and so on. Plus the sort of interesting greater glimpse that I like in fantasy. Plus it's a solid standalone adventure, although I understand there will be more books with these characters.

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