Cover Image: When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain

When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain

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Member Reviews

I really enjoyed The Empress of Salt and Fortune, and this follow-up novella did not disappoint. If anything, I think I liked it even better! The novella is largely about storytelling, and the different perspectives from which a single story can be told. It's really amazing to me how much world-building Nghi Vo can pack into such a short format, and how tight her theming is!
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This novella has quickly become my favourite for the year. I went in expecting a good tale, but also a rushed one - so I was pleasantly surprised that it read like a full novel within itself, rather than a short story. I'm also not usually a fan of the 'story within a story' tool, but was again surprised at how much I enjoyed this one - I found myself rushing through my chores at the end of the day just so I could pick up this book again. My only negative is that I had a rather terrifying dream about being chased by 3 tigers while I was half-way through the story, but all that means was that it was so good that it ingrained itself into my brain enough to be dreamt about! I'll be on the look-out for other works by this author, for certain.
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When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain, much like Nghi Vo's first novella, continues the story of the cleric Chih, who finds themselves and their companions trapped by a group of shapeshifting tigers whose history, they discover, is more nuanced than Chih had known. Taking place over the course of Chih's telling of the tiger's story and the tigers's corrections to their history, When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain is an entertaining and emotional novella about the stories we carry within us and the way in which history can get twisted away from the truth. A solid recommendation for anyone looking for a quick and evocative read about the importance of storytelling and truth.
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Less twists and turns in this Singing Hills Cycle Book but every bit as captivating as “The Empress of Salt and Fortune”. “When Tiger Came Down from the Mountain” finds Chih in the north with a very capable and charismatic companion Si-Yu. When their journey is interrupted by three tigers, they must use words and wit to survive the night. A beautiful, immersive look into the power of storytelling and the importance of examining the past from multiple perspectives.
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Empress of Salt and Fortune was my favourite book of the year so far, what made When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain one of my most anticipated reads. It did not let me down for a second and has become my newest comfort read.
I finished it in one sitting during my work break, and I'm already thinking about re-reading it. 
We follow Cleric Chih in another one of his travels, this time without Almost Brilliant (I missed him), where they encounter a group of tigers. And so, a night of storytelling ensues.
Although longer, it felt quite shorter than Empress of Salt and Fortune. Compelling, magical and fastpaced. We learn how stories are shaped by those who tell them to reflect their version of history. It was such a sweet tale with a refreshing ending and thought-provoking narrative.
I can only hope that we get more of Cleric Chih and Almost Brilliant.
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Charming novella that details the scholar Chih spending a night of storytelling and terror when she is waylaid by extremely talkative tigers on her way somewhere else. Rich with detail and layers of narrative both spoken and unspoken. I could happily read a million of these.
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