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G. W. Thomas Presents
THE KINGS OF THE NIGHT
 

A READER'S GUIDE TO SWORD & SORCERY

S




Fred Saberhagen (1930 - )

Fred Saberhagen is known to the world as the creator of the popular Berserker stories and his Dracula fantasies. His present popularity lies with a series of S&S novels that started off on an sf footing in The Empire of the East, but has become more and more fantastical as it progresses with the Book of Swords and The Book of Lost Swords Triads.

The Empire of the East Series
1. The Broken Lands (1968)
2. The Black Mountains (1971)
3. Changeling Earth (1973) a: Ardneh’s World
4. Empire of the East (1979)–omnibus–Illustrated by Enrich

The Book of Swords Series
5. The First Book of Swords (1983)
6. The Second Book of Swords (1983)
7. The Third Book of Swords (1984)
8. The Complete Book of Swords (1984)–omnibus

The Book of Lost Swords Series
9. The First Book of Lost Swords: Woundhealer’s Story (1986)
10. The Second Book of Lost Swords: Sightblinder’s Story (1987)
11. The Third Book of Lost Swords: Stonecutter’s Story (1988)
12. The Lost Swords: The First Triad (1988)–omnibus
13. The Fourth Book of Lost Swords: Farslayer’s Story (1989)
14. The Fifth Book of Lost Swords: Coinspinner’s Story (1989)
15. The Sixth Book of Lost Swords: Mindsword’s Story (1990)
16. The Lost Swords: The Second Triad (1990)–omnibus
 

Jessica Amanda Salmonson (1950 - )

Jessica Amanda Salmonson has produced something different, an S&S series set in Japan. The Tomoe Gozen series are as bloody as any of Wagner’s Kane novels, showing that the ladies can produce high-powered S&S. The Swordswoman also shows her debt to Robert E. Howard. Salmonson has edited two excellent S&S anthologies,  Amazons! and Heroic Visions. Amazons! won the World Fantasy Award as Best Anthology of 1982.

The Tomoe Gozen Series
1. Tomoe Gozen (1981)
2. The Golden Naginata (1982)
3. Thousand Shrine Warrior (1984)

Single Volumes
The Swordswoman (1982)
 

Charles R. Saunders (1946 - )

Canadian author, Charles Saunders, has created something only Jessica Amanda Salmonson has done well. He has invented an interesting S&S character in a non-European setting. The Imaro series features an African backdrop. The Imaro stories first appeared in Offutt’s Swords Against Darkness anthologies.

The Imaro Series
1. Imaro (1981)
2. The Quest for Kush (1984)
3. The Trail of Bohu (1985)
 

Darrell Schweitzer (1952 - )

Darrell Schweitzer has made a name for himself as a critic of horror and fantasy literature. As one of the editors of  Weird Tales (in its 4th incarnation), he publishes the best current fiction. Besides editing and criticism, Schweitzer writes some of the most meaningful fantasy, including his one S&S masterwork, The White Isle, originally published in Fantastic in the early 1980s. This novel is as deep as it is dark, but never dull.

1. The White Isle (1989)
 

Michael Shea (1946 - )

Michael Shea, despite his infrequent publishing, is an artist of great talent.  His two S&S novels are unique. The first, The Quest for Simbilis is a sequel to Jack Vance’s The Dying Earth , but is so highly original that it is no mere pastiche. Shea later applied his talents to Nifft the Lean , which won him the World Fantasy Award.

The Dying Earth Series
1. The Quest for Simbilis (1974)

Single Volumes
1. Nifft the Lean (1982) World Fantasy Award 1982
 

Robert Silverberg (1935 - )

Robert Silverberg? Yup. In his early days, Silverberg wrote just about everything. The Conquerors from the Darkness  was such a pot-boiler. Not in the same league as his sf, his S&S is fast and light, and worthy of a look. Whom the Gods Would Slay  was a book he wrote under the house pseudonym of Ivar Jorgenson, and is no worse than most late 1960’s S&S novels. Not Silverberg’s forté, but an interesting chapter in his career.

Single Volumes
The Conquerors From the Darkness (1965)
Whom the Gods Would Slay(1969)–as Ivar Jorgenson
 

David C. Smith (1952 - ) &  Richard L. Tierney (1936 - )

David Smith, along with Richard Tierney, are responsible for two of the best pastiches of the 1980’s, For the Witch of the Indies and For the Witch of the Mists. The latter does the one thing every Bran Mac Morn fan wishes to see: takes Bran to Rome to face Caesar himself. The other collaboration of these two men is the Red Sonja series, a character created by Marvel Comics.

The Red Sonja Series
1. The Ring of Ikribu (1981)
2. Demon Night (1982)
3. When Hell Laughs (1982)
4. Endithor’s Daughter (1982)
5. Against the Prince of Hell (1983)
6. Star of Doom (1983)

The Black Vulmea Series
1. For the Witch of the Indies (1977)

The Bran Mak Morn Series
1. For the Witch of the Mists (1978)
 
 

T

Keith Taylor (1946 - )

Keith Taylor, when not collaborating with Andrew Offutt on Cormac novels, has created one of the most popular Celtic heroes, Felimid the Bard. In the tradition of Poul Anderson, Taylor mixes erudition and S&S to make history more fun to read. Taylor has written other historical S&S stories for the resurrected Weird Tales. His early work appeared under the pseudonym “Dennis More”

The Bard Series
1. Bard (1981)
2. Bard II: The First Longship (1984)
3. Bard III: The Wild Sea (1986)
4. Raven’s Gathering (1987)
5. Felimid’s Homecoming (1991)

The Cormac Mac Art Series–with Andrew Offutt
1. When Death Birds Fly (1980)
2. The Tower of Death (1982)

V

Jack Vance (1920 - )

The diverse Jack Vance has had several careers in sf,  fantasy and everything in between. His Dying Earth  series takes its lead from Clark Ashton Smith’s Zothique, a dying and ancient world, where magic has once again replaced science. Vance’s quirky and imaginative style creates more moments in a single story than can be found in an entire library of Xanth novels. Vance is a master who has to be “imbibed” to be appreciated. Vance has won the World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Dying Earth Series
1. The Dying Earth (1950)
2. Eyes of the Overworld (1966)
3. Cugel’s Saga (1983)
4. Rhialto the Marvellous (1984)
 
 


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