Get Your Free Audiobook

Non-member price: $35.50

After 30 days, Audible is $16.45/mo. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

Each an acclaimed author in his own right, Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle have collaborated on some of the biggest bestsellers in science fiction history, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Footfall. Here Niven and Pournelle have combined their award-winning talents and imaginations to produce a masterpiece of epic fantasy that rivals the works of Robert Jordan and David Eddings.

Set in the world of Larry Niven’s popular The Magic Goes AwayThe Burning City transports listeners to an enchanted and ancient city bearing a provocative resemblance to our own modern society. There, Yangin-Atep, the volatile and voracious god of fire, alternately protects and destroys the city’s denizens. In Tep’s Town, nothing can burn indoors, and no fire can start - except when the Burning comes upon the city. At that time the people, possessed by Yangin-Atep, set their own town ablaze in a riotous orgy of destruction that often comes without warning.

Whandall Placehold has lived with the Burning all his life. Fighting his way to adulthood in the mean but magical streets of the city’s most blighted neighborhoods, Whandall dreams of escaping the god’s wrath to find a new and better life. But his best hope for freedom may lie with Morth of Atlantis - the enigmatic sorcerer who killed his father.

Both gritty and exotic, The Burning City is a fantasy tale unlike any you have heard before.

©2000 Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“The Burning City is a lively book that deftly integrates social concerns of today with the magic and mythology of yesterday.” (, editorial review)
“The coauthors’ creativity is with them as they build a detailed world containing classical and Native American elements. Whether or not it marks a permanent shift from SF to fantasy for Niven and Pournelle, this is another absorbing book from them and bodes well for yet more of their collaborations.” ( Booklist)
"Niven and Pournelle are in fine form.” ( Locus)

What listeners say about The Burning City

Average Customer Ratings

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

No Reviews are Available
Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Anant
  • Anant
  • 10-03-2013

Somehow just couldnt get into the book

What would have made The Burning City better?

I'm a big fan of Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle and have listened to most of their books, somehow this was one book I just didn't get into. I listened to the first part and gave up. Pretty unusual for me since most of their other books engaged me so much that I had to stop myself from excercising too much (yes, I am exaggerating :-)

I'm going to continue to listen to their books, hopefully this was an anomaly where the story just didn't click for me.

What could Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

The background of the world / book came in bits and pieces and it took me a long time to figure out the basic facts of the world. I was semi engaged in the book after I looked it up on wikipedia and figured out the part about the fire god and the lords.

What does Tom Weiner bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He does a great job of telling the story and bringing the characters to life

1 person found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Ian Warrender
  • Ian Warrender
  • 17-05-2017

Master Storytelling

First the basics if you want a great self contained story you're at right place. However if you want your stories to say something to be an investigation of the human condition, to discuss morality from different view points, to examine class, family and question what power is, then this is a book is an essential read.
It contains Niven's ability to create a fully realised world and Pournelle's ability to create characters with motives and growth. It helps that this world is on edge between myths and the world we know.

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.