In The Book of The Unknown, Jonathan Keats creates a whole mythology out of bits and pieces of Jewish and Germanic religious myths and superstitions. It's a collection of short stories about people living in a medieval age, back when your profession defined who you were. The stories are light and humorous, never epic, and always touching.The book is framed around a Talmudic myth that the world is justified by the anonymous existence of just 36 good people in the world. Each story is about one of those people, but they aren't particularly moral or exceptional, they are mostly normal people who have mostly mundane jobs to do, and none of them know of their own importance.The first story is about a very simple fisherman who is married to an extremely intelligent harridan. Wishing to win her love, he trades his soul to a Dybbuk, a demon, for intelligence. He gains a sort of intelligence, but not like his wife's. Slowly, she falls in love with him. This man, although he traded his soul, and not an exemplar of morality, is one of the pillars of the world that justifies all of creation to God.The other stories include a whore who unites a town, a demon who saves one, a clown who heals a kingdom. None of the stories are strictly connected, but they all exist in an old Germany where golems are created, demons barter for souls, sleep is optional, and sins can be eaten.The Book of the Unknown is a wonderful little window into this mythological world that feels like it almost existed. It made me smile for days afterward, and I recommend it without reservation.