Full of Books

Swords in the Mist by Fritz Leiber Review

Title: Swords in the Mist

Author: Fritz Leiber

First published September 1, 1968

427 pages, Paperback

ISBN: 9781596872721 (ISBN10: 1596872721)

Rating: 4.06

Overview

Fafhrd and Gray Mouser are back with their daring escapades and cunning schemes. In Swords in the Mist, the dynamic duo seeks the guidance of a powerful sorceress at the Witch’s Tent for a secret that could aid in their escape.

But why would they ever need to escape when their luck has been on their side? As master thieves, they manage to steal an entire kingdom hidden within a hill, and with a declaration of their lordship, they set out to rule their new domain.

Join Fafhrd and Gray Mouser in yet another thrilling adventure filled with action, magic, and mischief.

About the Author

Fritz Reuter Leiber Jr. was a fascinating young writer who crossed paths with HP Lovecraft. His early short stories often leaned towards horror rather than sci-fi or fantasy, and his mature voice shone through in his sword-and-sorcery tales.

These stories featured the large and sensitive barbarian Fafhrd and the small, street-smart-ish Gray Mouser. Leiber returned to this series throughout his career, using it for both farce and gloomy moods.

For fans of the series, The Swords of Lankhmar is a must-read. Leiber’s sci-fi works include The Wanderer, where a large cast survives flood, fire, and the sexual advances of feline aliens, and the satirical A Spectre is Haunting Texas.

The latter features a gangling, exo-skeleton-clad actor from the Moon leading a revolution and finding love. In his later works, including the fine horror novel Our Lady of Darkness, Leiber combined autobiographical issues like his battle with depression and alcoholism with meditations on the emotional content of the fantastic genres.

Leiber’s ability to continually reinvent himself and examine his work kept him one of the most modern writers in the sci-fi genre until his death. He also used alternate names such as Maurice Brecon, Fric Lajber, Fritz Leiber, Jr., Fritz R.

Leiber, Fritz Leiber Jun., and F. Lieber.

Editoral Review

Swords in the Mist is a fantasy novel by Fritz Leiber, first published on September 1, 1968. Leiber, one of the greatest fantasy writers of the 20th century, is known for his captivating and imaginative stories that continue to captivate readers today.

Swords in the Mist is part of his wider fantasy world known as Nehwon, a unique setting inspired by the tales of Conan the Barbarian. The novel follows two heroes, Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, as they embark on a series of fantastical adventures.

The two are defined by their contrasting personalities, with Fafhrd being a lovable rogue, and the Gray Mouser being a more cerebral and cunning character. Together, they navigate the treacherous terrain of Nehwon, facing off against werewolves, evil sorcerers, and otherworldly creatures.

The plot is engaging and action-packed, with Leiber creating a vivid and immersive world that will appeal to fans of the fantasy genre. Although the novel can be read as a standalone story, it is recommended that readers go back and familiarize themselves with the earlier works in the Nehwon series to fully appreciate the depth of the world that Leiber has created.

Leiber’s writing is of a high quality, with descriptive prose that paints a vivid picture of the world and characters. The pacing is well-balanced, with enough action and suspense to keep the reader engaged, but not so much that the story becomes overwhelming.

One of the strengths of the book is the way in which Leiber effectively blends humor with epic fantasy. The banter between Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser is witty and entertaining, providing moments of levity amid the darker elements of the story.

While there are few flaws to be found in Swords in the Mist, some readers may find the sexual politics of the novel to be dated. The story is set in a time when gender roles were more rigidly defined, and this is reflected in the way that women are portrayed in the book.

Overall, Swords in the Mist is a must-read for fans of the fantasy genre. It is a well-written and expertly crafted work that showcases Leiber’s talent for world-building and character creation.

It is recommended that readers start with the earlier books in the Nehwon series to fully appreciate the depth and richness of Leiber’s fantasy world.

Rating: 4.5/5

Popular Books