The Swords of Lankhmar

The Swords of Lankhmar

Fritz Leiber / Jan 27, 2020

The Swords of Lankhmar One of them was a huge brawny full bearded barbarian from the northlands of Nehwon His name was Fafhrd his weapon a broadsword The other was a small nimble man dressed all in gray Men called him t

  • Title: The Swords of Lankhmar
  • Author: Fritz Leiber
  • ISBN: 9780441080380
  • Page: 254
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • One of them was a huge, brawny, full bearded barbarian from the northlands of Nehwon His name was Fafhrd, his weapon a broadsword The other was a small, nimble man dressed all in gray Men called him the Gray Mouser, and he carried both rapier and dirk They were known throughout the city of Lankhmar as brawlers, cutpurses, and rogues But they were the most dangerous fiOne of them was a huge, brawny, full bearded barbarian from the northlands of Nehwon His name was Fafhrd, his weapon a broadsword The other was a small, nimble man dressed all in gray Men called him the Gray Mouser, and he carried both rapier and dirk They were known throughout the city of Lankhmar as brawlers, cutpurses, and rogues But they were the most dangerous fighting men in Lankhmar, so when the Overlord Glipkerio Kistomerces needed guards for an all important shipment of gifts to a neighbouring monarch, he chose them for the task Thus began one of the most fabolous sword and sorcery adventures in the famous Fafhrd Gray Mouser saga a full length novel which Ace Books is proud to bring to you as the first in this action packed new series.

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    About "Fritz Leiber"

      • Fritz Leiber

        Fritz Reuter Leiber, Jr was one of the interesting of the young writers who came into HP Lovecraft s orbit, and some of his best early short fiction is horror rather than sf or fantasy He found his mature voice early in the first of the sword and sorcery adventures featuring the large sensitive barbarian Fafhrd and the small street smart ish Gray Mouser he returned to this series at various points in his career, using it sometimes for farce and sometimes for gloomy mood pieces The Swords of Lankhmar is perhaps the best single volume of their adventures Leiber s science fiction includes the planet smashing The Wanderer in which a large cast mostly survive flood, fire, and the sexual attentions of feline aliens, and the satirical A Spectre is Haunting Texas in which a gangling, exo skeleton clad actor from the Moon leads a revolution and finds his true love Leiber s late short fiction, and the fine horror novel Our Lady of Darkness, combine autobiographical issues like his struggle with depression and alcoholism with meditations on the emotional content of the fantastic genres Leiber s capacity for endless self reinvention and productive self examination kept him, until his death, one of the most modern of his sf generation.


    1. This is a superb fantasy novel, featuring sword fights, magic potions, ancient gods awake and wrathful, super-intelligent rats, a time-traveller riding a sea serpent, a whistle for summoning mystic war cats, transparent but still attractive lady ghouls whose bones gleam provocatively in the moonlight, lovely femme fatales and (of course) deluded males, nudity, copious drinking, overt sadism involving whips and chains, and just a hint of masochism for good measure. In other words: a thoroughly en [...]

    2. Note, Sept. 3, 2013: I corrected a minor typo here just now.In creating the barbarian soldier of fortune Fafhrd and his partner, the short-statured swordsman known only by his nickname the Gray Mouser, and the fantasy world of Nehwon that they inhabit, Leiber was influenced by his sword-and-sorcery sub-genre predecessors, notably Robert E. Howard and E. R. Eddison. But he also wanted (according to his preface for this novel) to create "fantasy heroes closer to true human stature" than the likes [...]

    3. When I first started reading Leiber, my expectations were pretty low. He is often praised along with the other 'giants', but the fantasy genre is awash with unwarranted praise: the barely-differentiated is lauded as revolutionary, and many of its 'giants' are giant only in disappointment. But Leiber surprised me. Throughout the Lankhmar series, he has shown a lively, stylized voice, an eye for character and suspense, and an evocative sense of wonder.Unfortunately, he begins to fall off his pace [...]

    4. Oh man, I can't stress enough that I had more fun reading this than I have with anything in a long time, except maybe for some of the other Lankhmar stuff, like the classic "Lean Times in Lankhmar", which everyone with a taste for satire and mockery of religion should definitely read. This is the one and only Lankhmar novel (the rest are of course all short stories) and starts with the two rogues already in some serious trouble as they return to the grimy and beloved city of Lankhmar to find all [...]

    5. I recently re-read for the Pulp Fiction group. Fafhrd & the Gray Mouser are certainly 2 of the most entertaining of all sword & sorcery heroes. Their faults are legion, but their hearts are usually in the right place, unless of course there's money or sex to be had. Then they make horrendous mistakes, scramble frantically to extricate themselves from their current mess & swagger off, chalking it all up to experience. Of course, they promptly get into another mess shortly after that, [...]

    6. Reaching the fifth installment of the ongoing saga of Fafhrd and Grey Mouser, I thought for a while that I'm approaching saturation point, or that the author is better suited to the short form rather than this attempt at a full blown novel featuring his pair of lovable scoundrels. It took a German speaking traveller between parallel universes, riding a double headed sea serpent and searching for his misplaced spaceship to get me in the right mood for tacklingSwords of Lankhmar. I believe this is [...]

    7. "A plague of rats overrun Lankhmar, the capitol city and glittering gem of the land of Nehwon. Commissioned to guard a ship of grain from the cursed rodents, brother-in-arms Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser soon discover the plague has progressed to a fatal point. Mustering the strength of sorcery, they descend into the depths of Lankhmar and rise to battle in order to save the soul of the ill-fated city."This is certainly not the strongest of Fritz Lieber’s series about Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, [...]

    8. This is the first volume where the reader gets to truly savor the outré, decadent delights of Lankhmar, a city that is wealthy and metropolitan more or less in spite of itself, and this alone is worth the price of admission for the novel.This type of setting has been done more extensively elsewhere (see New Crobuzon), but I'm curious: was this the first? What came before Lankhmar?

    9. ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.I never get tired of Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser — I adore those two rogues! In The Swords of Lankhmar (a full novel rather than the usual story collection), the boys have been hired as guards for a fleet of grain shipments because several ships have recently disappeared. Aboard the ship they meet a couple of enchanting women who are escorting a troupe of performing rats across the sea. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser soon discover that these are not ordinary [...]

    10. panopticonitalia/2Swords of Lankhmar is the fifth book, and the only novel in the saga of Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser (second in Italy, because the first four are contained in The World Nehwon), written by Fritz Leiber and published in 1976 by the North.In this adventure the Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser are hired by Glipkerio Kistomerces, lord of Lankhmar, to escort a fleet of ships laden with grain that will be offered to Movarl of Eight City, as compensation for hold off Mingol. However, the dang [...]

    11. Meh. The Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser books are a fun way to waste some time if I'm in a particular mood.They're pretty formulaic. In each one, our two heroes go on an adventure, get into trouble due to lust, greed, or often both, then spend the rest of the story trying to frantically work their way out of trouble again. But whereas the other books are anthologies of slightly connected but mostly separate short stories, this particular one is a full length novel. And where the short stories are a [...]

    12. Possibly the best fantasy novel of all time. I grabbed it randomly off a bookshelf one night, maybe a month ago, before going to bed, and re-read it for the 3rd or 4th time in my life. It's a quick and amazing read. Swords, sorcery, rats humorous and even kinda sexy the only flaw in this book is the dumb part about the interdimensional traveler -- I think this was filler material recycled from another story. Anyhow this is the only full-length Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser novel, and it is no surpr [...]

    13. Really 3.5 stars. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser in their first full-length novel take on a horde of civilized rats bent on taking over Lankhmar. I did enjoy it quite a bit, but the heroes were really missing the obvious in the beginning and the middle had slow parts, and the end with the whistle was just a little bit too lucky. I really liked the juxtopositions of how sometimes being small has its fighting advantages, and sometimes being large does.

    14. This is the eleventh tale of Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, written by Fritz Lieber. It first appeared as Scylla's Daughter in 1961 in Fantastic. It was later revised/expanded in 1970 as The Swords of Lankhmar, volume 5 (all of it) of the collected stories.This is a craaaaazy story! Not always in a good way, but definitely always in a colorful way. It's not really a spoiler to tell you it's about a bunch of rats trying to take over Lankhmar, because that is so heavily foreshadowed you'd have to be [...]

    15. A lesser tale, run too long We're already at the point of diminishing returns in the Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser stories. What would be a decent novella is stretched into a mediocre novel, slowed by palace intrigues that aren't and mysterious side characters that aren't worth pondering. Still, it's pleasant enough and the world building, including the invisible-fleshed Ghouls and the rat kingdom of Lankhmar Below make for a worthwhile read.

    16. I am continuing my read of Fritz Leiber Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser stories in the order they were first published. I really enjoyed the Swords of Lankhmar to include the Easter eggs place within the story. If I had not read the a number of his early writings I would not have picked up on them. I highly recommend this novel and I'm looking forward to reading "The Snow Women" in the near future.

    17. I like the idea of fritz but his fascination with having 2 great heroes both compete for 1 girl or even have 1 girlfriend each in other books is silly. Heroes in fantasy lands would have sex with dozens of hot women. This bizarre monogamy which is not natural is silly. Don't marry, have sex with dozens hot women, don't have kids, and live alone.

    18. great Sword and sorcery, the more you learn about Fafard and the gray Mousure the more i like them, they grow as characters but dont as well.

    19. _The Swords of Lankhmar_ reads like an actual novel, rather than as a collection of connected short stories, the way the earlier books in the series do. I enjoyed it a great deal.

    20. When I saw that The Swords of Lankhmar was a novel instead of a collection of short stories like the other Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser books, I was a bit apprehensive. I was worried that it wouldn't translate well into the longer form and, well, I was kind of right. The beginning part of the book doesn't seem to have much to do with the rest other than to introduce some characters and to separate the duo, the middle drags onbut the ending is a rolicking good time up there with the best that Leibe [...]

    21. The Swords of Lankhmar, fifth volume in Fritz Leiber’s Fafhrd and Gray Mouser books, stands out among the others by being the only novel in the series. It has often been remarked upon that this form is not really suited to the tales Leiber tries to tell, and I am finding myself in agreement with this. Not that The Swords of Lankhmar wasn’t a fun to read, but it does drag a bit in places, in particular during the sea voyage described in its first part which is almost a standalone tale.Most of [...]

    22. "Never blow a strange whistle. It might summon things far worse even than savage mastiffs or the police."The fifth chronicle in the collected stories of Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser contains a great many enjoyable bits of advice, such as the quote in the headline above."Swords of Lankhmar" finds our beloved heroes on what is a full, novel-length adventure. The approach is a welcome change and well-suited to this kind of story. While the collection of short(er) stories that categorizes the first fo [...]

    23. Quella fu l'estate della fantascienza e del fantasy. Oltre diecimila pagine lette in meno di un mese, sotto lo sguardo compiaciuto dei miei anfitrioni, che mi avevano lasciato mano libera con la loro sterminata e variegatissima libreria.Il ciclo della Fondazione di Asimov, Leiber in tutte le salse, la trilogia del Signore degli anelli - di proprietà del loro pargolo, allora ottenne (prometteva bene essendo figlio d'arte, infatti scriveva già).L'amaca del giardino terrazzato il mio punto d'appo [...]

    24. I can see why Neil Gaiman felt that Fritz Leiber deserved to have some of his work brought to the attention of 21st century readers in audio form. This book is a delight, a mix of classic swords-and-sorcery adventure, sardonic, dark fairytale, and imaginative world creation, with a little tales-of-ribaldry kinkyness thrown in. While it's fifth in a series, I don’t see any reason you can’t start here. The hairy barbarian Fafhrd and the small, quick-witted Gray Mouser are two instantly familia [...]

    25. I really wanted to like these books. I first heard about them while I was in high school in the ‘80s, but I was never able to find them in bookstores and I had forgotten about them for a long time. & fixed that for me.I’m writing only one review for all of the books because my overall impression of them remains the same through most of the stories. The books remain oddly stagnant in some respects, and they vary wildly in others. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser are almost comically trite as [...]

    26. 1968's Swords of Lankhmar marks the first Fafhrd and Gray Mouser novel. In this single story, Lankhmar is threatened by intelligent rats.As Leiber novels go, this one is almost coherent, most likely due to the novel having an editor. God bless that unknown editor, who with a baseball bat and chainsaw, somehow almost got Leiber to produce a coherent novel. For the most part, the events unfold in an orderly and comprehensible manner, story arcs are begun and completed well, and side narratives are [...]

    27. Only reading Fritz Leiber can I reliably find words I've never read/heard before, and also read about poo.The Lankhmar books, for all they've contributed to and generated fantasy tropes and cliches alike, always surprise me, and that's why I'll definitely read all of them. Leiber's writing breaks every MFA-modern-writing-rule, and is fantastically engaging, beautifully written, succinct where it must be, poetic where it wills, shocking, hilarious, and even moving, on occasion. The Swords of Lank [...]

    28. Como tengo por costumbre, comentaré esta saga al completo y no desgranando libro por libro.Para analizar las aventuras de Fafhrd y el Ratonero Gris es necesario ambientarse en su contexto histórico. Publicada la primera novela (Espadas y demonios) en 1970, la sociedad y valores no eran los mismos que priman en la nuestra hoy en día.Quizá haya quien se pueda escandalizar ante la visión tan machista que ofrecen sus páginas, donde sus dos héroes no buscan en el sexo opuesto más que la pura [...]

    29. Although this book is the fifth of six collecting the original tales of Fafhrd & the Grey Mouser, it also happens to be their first and (as far as I know) only novel length adventure. A fun and breezy read with a rather dark sense of whimsy. Lankhmar is under siege by a very unusual foe, and only the two greatest swordsmen--and greatest rogues--in all of Newhon can save it. The plot is much more epic in scope, but also, perhaps due to length, a bit stretched thin in places. The essence of Fa [...]

    30. I wasn't overly impressed by this outing of the adventuring duo. Infact most of the time it was only following one or the other - the pair were only together at the beginning and end of this story while the rest had them each carried away by events in the book.I didn't like this, as some of my favorite moments in the series has been the interaction between the pair.Anyway, this is a fairly standard tale, with a mystery growing about a rat invasion. A lot of the action was actually fairly inventi [...]

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