We Are All Legends
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We Are All Legends

by Darrell Schweitzer
Release date: 1981
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasysword and sorcery, short stories

"In the 1970s, the heyday of swords and sorcery, a deluge of bad heroic fantasy flooded the market; as a result, since the early '80s, hardly any swords-and-sorcery books have been published outside the Conan the Barbarian series, the Fafhrd and Gray Mouser books, Michael Moorcock's Eternal Champion series, and Marion Zimmer Bradley's feminist Sword and Sorceress anthology series. The derivative '70s swords and sorcery deserved to be washed away, but some worthwhile works disappeared as well. Two lost series that deserved far better are Karl Edward Wagner's Kane books and Darrell Schweitzer's Sir Julian stories. Both series are well written and intelligent, and they share an even rarer trait: the dark, brooding sensibility that helped make Robert E. Howard's sometimes purple (and always scarlet) Conan stories so popular and memorable.

Now the Wildside Press has reprinted We Are All Legends, the long-unavailable collection of 13 linked stories about Sir Julian, the Crusader damned by God after a night spent with a Satanic witch. Julian roams Europe and the East, and strange lands not found on any map, seeking to escape his fate. In "The Lady of the Fountain," Julian's encounter with a lamia may destroy both the knight and his closest companion. In "The Veiled Pool of Mistorak," Faerie lords send Julian on a grim quest to find a city that exists no more and a man doomed ever to live. In "The One Who Spoke with the Owls," the penniless knight accepts a job before learning its terms and wakes to discover he has been hired to slay a pagan witch. "The Castle of Kites and Crows" presents a vision of cosmic reality that will chill the soul of anyone raised in a Christian faith. While the first-person narration occasionally makes Julian sound more self-absorbed than accursed, We Are All Legends is a fine entertainment that merits the attention of fantasy and horror fans."

– Cynthia Ward

Contents:

  • Introduction by L. Sprague de Camp
  • The Hag
  • The Lady of the Fountain
  • Island of Faces
  • The Veiled Pool of Mistorak
  • The One Who Spoke with the Owls
  • The Castle of Kites and Crows
  • The Riddle of the Horn
  • Divers Hands
  • The Unknown God Cried Out
  • Into the Dark Land
  • A Fabulous, Formless Darkness
  • Midnight, Moonlight, and the Secret of the Sea
  • L'envoi
(updated 2017-01-16)

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