Born in New York City, she grew up in Roosevelt, Long Island. After school, she studied nursing and practiced as a psychiatric nurse for two years until 1976, when she moved to California and worked as an assistant to David Gerrold. Her first novel was published by Dell Books in 1979; Gerrold wrote an "overture" to that novel, on the grounds that he'd rather be making overtures than introductions to Duane. She subsequently worked as a freelance writer. In 1981 she moved to Pennsylvania. She married Northern Irish author Peter Morwood in 1987; they moved to the United Kingdom and then to Ireland, where she resides in County Wicklow.
Also known as the Tale of the Five, The Middle Kingdoms high fantasy series has been awaiting completion since 1992. The books center on some of the same themes as her better-known Young Wizards series; those who wield the Blue Fire have many of the same responsibilities as the wizards and fight the same battle against entropy. In So You Want to Be a Wizard Nita's wizardry manual is written by "Hearnssen", a reference to the protagonist of The Door Into Fire, Herewiss s'Hearn (son of Hearn), so it may be that the Middle Kingdoms are part of the same sheaf of universes as the Young Wizards setting. Adding to this, one interdimensional portal in The Door into Fire appears to open over New York City. Unlike Duane's children's books, however, the Tale of the Five series deals openly with issues of alternative sexuality. Within the Middle Kingdoms, bisexuality and group marriage are the norm. Duane is working on the final volume. The Door into Fire and The Door into Shadow have an omnibus reprint called Tale of Five: The Sword and the Dragon.
Books in the series:
- The Door into Fire (1979)
- The Door into Shadow (1984)
- The Door into Sunset (1992)
- The Door into Starlight (to be written)
Several short stories are set in the Middle Kingdoms: Parting Gifts (1981) and its prequel The Span (1999) featuring Sirronde; Duane plans to write a middle novella and publish the three together as Sirronde's World. Lior and the Sea (1985) is set in the world of the Middle Kingdoms, but not concerning any of the characters in the novels.
The Door Into Fire (The Tale of the Five #1) by Diane Duane
Publisher: Dell Publishing; First Ed edition (January 1979)
Amazon: The Door Into Fire (The Tale of the Five #1)
Herewiss, Prince of the Brightwood, decides to search other worlds for the secret of controlling the Power of the Flame in order to save his friend, Freelorn, exiled Prince of Arlen.
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