Myst: The Book of Ti'ana

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Myst: The Book of Ti'ana
Book of Tiana cover.jpg
Author David Wingrove
Illustrator Tom Bowman
Publisher Hyperion
Release Date November 1996
Pages 322
ISBN 0-7868-6160-6
Preceded by Myst: The Book of Atrus
Followed by Myst: The Book of D'ni


Myst: The Book of Ti'ana is the second Myst novel, following the Book of Atrus, although its events are chronologically set a few decades earlier.

It was written by Rand Miller with David Wingrove and published in 1996. It chronicles the fall of D'ni as a result of the Revolt of Veovis in the D'ni year of 9400 DE. According to the book credits, it is supposed to be the result of the archaeological discoveries and translations of a dedicated group of Cyan employees, among them Chris Brandkamp, Richard Watson, and Ryan Miller.

Illustrations are inspired by Wingrove's descriptions in the book. The inside of the front cover has Aitrus' map (poster-size in the hardcover edition), a detailed schematic of the D'ni cave system and the Great Shaft and is considered by Cyan representatives to be an exact replica of a D'ni map.[1]

The book is decorated with the D'ni number for 17. Its reason and significance are unknown.

Book Description[edit]

The book description reads:

The ages of Myst are worlds of adventure and awe; of mystery and beauty; of intrigue and betrayal. You have seen a glimpse of the picture, and know the history of Catherine and Atrus. Now take a step further in the fictional legend of Myst.
These pages are your link to the story of Ti'ana—known among humans as Anna—the first woman from the outside world to enter the domain of the D'ni. She wandered into a place she never should have seen, and her intelligence and wisdom surprised some. And terrified others. When one young lord befriends her, then marries her, all layers of D'ni society are shaken. But no one realizes just how deeply.
The Book of Ti'ana is a tale of friend versus friend; of virtue against evil, and of trust and betrayal. It is a story that many do not want told. For you will watch as the unimaginable comes to pass, and only one is left to carry on the legacy.

Plot Summary[edit]

The Book of Ti'ana is divided into seven parts followed by an epilogue with each segment within those parts divided by the same D'ni number symbol for 17 that decorates the front cover of the book. The parts are briefly summarized as follows:[1]

Part One: Echoes in the Rock[edit]

Aitrus is a member of a stoic scientific race known as the D'ni who are seeking to expand their knowledge by possibly making contact with the surface dwellers and also a member of an exploration team seeking to excavate a tunnel to Earth's surface. Instability in the earth's crust results in a disaster which ends the project. At the time of the disaster, Aitrus rescues Veovis, an old school acquaintance. A bond of friendship is forged between Aitrus and Veovis.

Part Two: Of Stone and Dust and Ashes[edit]

On earth's surface, in the midst of a forsaken desert, a geological analyst and his daughter Anna live in a rock cleft, doing mining analysis for hire. Curiosity about a circular rock pattern in the desert leads to the discovery of caves, but the exertion of excavating an opening causes the geologist's death. Numbed with grief, Anna decides to have one last look at the cave after she packs her belongings to leave for the city where they do business. One discovery after another draws her on until she is hopelessly lost in the depths of the earth.

Part Three: Fault Lines[edit]

While the Council, the governing body of the D'ni empire debates the wisdom of making contact with surface dwellers, Anna is discovered in their cave system. She is imprisoned and is to eventually come before the Council for questioning once they are able to communicate with her. Anna learns the D'ni language, and is able to influence the Council to allow her to remain in D'ni rather than be sent away to a Prison Age. Anna acquaints herself with D'ni culture and learns of the special gift of that race in mastering the Art; the ability to write worlds and go to those worlds. She lives with Aitrus's parents and Aitrus admires and befriends her which brings tension to his relationship with Veovis. Veovis, who views any non D'ni as a barbarian, is adamantly against Anna acquiring knowledge of the Art.

Part Four: Gemedet[edit]

Aitrus teaches Anna to write, and together they write the link to the age Gemedet into existence. After assuring himself of no legal impediment, Aitrus wishes to marry Anna, whom he affectionately calls Ti'ana. Veovis remains steadfast in his opposition to the union, but Aitrus goes to Veovis and secures the marriage by calling in the debt owed by Veovis to Aitrus for saving his life. Their friendship is irreparably damaged and from then on an angry Veovis is suspicious of Aitrus's motives.

Part Five: The Philosopher[edit]

Veovis develops an unholy alliance with A'gaeris, known as the Philosopher. Together they share a common view of D'ni purity, but the two differ on matters of integrity. A'gaeris manipulates the conflict between Veovis and Aitrus, resulting in innocent Veovis being convicted of murder and sent to a Prison Age. In his rage against Aitrus, Veovis is blind to A'gaeris's scheme and blames Aitrus.

Part Six: The Ink in the Well[edit]

Anna bears a son, Gehn. Gehn is sickly and when he leaves home for school at the age of four, he suffers the prejudice of those who denigrate him for being of mixed race. He is fascinated by the Art and develops a deep pride in his D'ni heritage while subconsciously dismissing the influence of his non D'ni mother. Veovis escapes from prison with the help of A'gaeris and they engage in systematic attacks of terrorism on D'ni. Anna sees Veovis after one such attack and follows him to an age that is their headquarters. She is able to thwart further conspiracy and Veovis is captured, but A'gaeris vanishes. Veovis is condemned to death, but Anna speaks for him because of his initial innocence. A Prison Age is written for Veovis that will insure permanent capture.

Part Seven: Last Days[edit]

Unknown to the Council, Veovis never entered the Prison Age. A'gaeris again had provided him with a means of escape. Together they bring about the final collapse of D'ni civilization through a biological attack. They infect most of the ages written by the D'ni, killing perhaps all the D'ni citizens. Aitrus brings his family safely to Gemedet, but realizing the intentions of A'gaeris and Veovis, returns to D'ni to escort Anna and Gehn through the tunnels to earth's surface. Veovis is killed by a treacherous A'gaeris. A'gaeris captures Anna and Gehn; knowing himself to be mortally ill, Aitrus cleverly sets a trap for A'gaeris resulting in both their deaths.

Epilogue[edit]

After many days journey, Anna and Gehn emerge from a dormant volcano. When they find their way to the cleft, Anna scoops up the life giving water in the depths of the cleft and vows to begin again.[1]

Inaccuracies[edit]

  • D'ni's age differs from what is written in the Book of Atrus and from what is considered canon.
  • The Cleft is inferred to be somewhere in the Middle East, but it is actually in New Mexico.

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Book of Ti'ana summary at Tales of D'ni.