Before there was J.R.R Tolkien, there was Robert E. Howard, who created what would later be called Heroic Fantasy or Sword-and-Sorcery. With the justly-earned popularity of Lord of the Rings, it seems to me that many writers and publishers of fantasy fiction have forsaken the heroic ballads for overly-complex, over-sized, and, endless series.
But David Gemmell has not forgotten the heart of a good fantasy tale which is simply heroes (or anti-heroes).
This is the story of Druss, the Captain of the Axe, the Deathwalker, the Legend and his defiant stand with the heroes of Dros Delnoch against the massive overwhelming barbarian hordes who vow to conquer the kingdom. It’s the classic “few stood against many” theme that when done right makes one’s heart soar.
Mr. Gemmel definitely knows how to do it right, and then some. The story starts out pleasantly entertaining, but before you know it, it reaches out to grab you by the guts. Legend was my first of what will be many David Gemmell books and all I can say is: What took me so long to give him a try?
Drenai — (1984-2004) Publisher: Druss, Captain of the Axe, was the stuff of legends. But even as the stories grew in the telling, Druss himself grew older. He turned his back on his own legend and retreated to a mountain lair to await his old enemy, death. Meanwhile, barbarian hordes were on the march. Nothing could stand in their way. Druss reluctantly agreed to come out of retirement. But could even Druss live up to his own legends?