Swords and Sorceries #3 Tales of Heroic Fantasy

This is the third anthology in the series dedicated to the memory of the wonderful Charles Black. He would have loved this.

Swords and Sorceries #3 has a themed feel with a strong cast throwing in lots of great stories. I’m happy to have made the cut but not ashamed to say that I appear to be punching well above my weight. My story Wardark is in the classic Thongor frame with a muscled giant, whose vocabulary is somewhat limited, out to thwart bad guys and save the world. The anthology has many subtler tales and harks back to past glories when fantasy was a chance to escape from the grim realities of daily living..

I read the anthology in two days as the writing was very polished and there isn’t a dud in it, so picking favourites is something of a nightmare. For the hell of it, I particularly liked the intrepid Knox, a warrior who is as irreverent as any Harry Harrison hero and has a similar invincible quality. With dry humour and realism, Carson Ray manages a rollercoaster ride through grim temples, lopping off bits of some very nasty monks. Contrast this with “The Rains of Barafonn” by Mike Chinn, a thoughtful and poignant offering reminiscent of the great days of dystopian fantasy. “The Foliage” by Rab Foster made me laugh out loud but there were so many other good stories, it’s up to you to try it out.

Nicely illustrated by Jim Pitts, look out for a more intense review on a future SUNDAY SERVICE on