The Book of Swords

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New epic fantasy in the grand tradition—including a never-before-published Song of Ice and Fire story by George R. R. Martin!

Fantasy fiction has produced some of the most unforgettable heroes ever conjured onto the page: Robert E. Howard’s Conan the Barbarian, Michael Moorcock’s Elric of Melniboné, Fritz Leiber’s Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. Classic characters like these made sword and sorcery a storytelling sensation, a cornerstone of fantasy fiction—and an inspiration for a new generation of writers, spinning their own outsize tales of magic and swashbuckling adventure.

Now, in The Book of Swords, acclaimed editor and bestselling author Gardner Dozois presents an all-new anthology of original epic tales by a stellar cast of award-winning modern masters—many of them set in their authors’ best-loved worlds. Join today’s finest tellers of fantastic tales, including George R. R. Martin, K. J. Parker, Robin Hobb, Scott Lynch, Ken Liu, C. J. Cherryh, Daniel Abraham, Lavie Tidhar, Ellen Kushner, and more on action-packed journeys into the outer realms of dark enchantment and intrepid derring-do, featuring a stunning assortment of fearless swordsmen and warrior women who face down danger and death at every turn with courage, cunning, and cold steel.

FEATURING SIXTEEN ALL-NEW STORIES:

“The Best Man Wins” by K. J. Parker
“Her Father’s Sword” by Robin Hobb
“The Hidden Girl” by Ken Liu
“The Sword of Destiny” by Matthew Hughes
“‘I Am a Handsome Man,’ Said Apollo Crow” by Kate Elliott
“The Triumph of Virtue” by Walter Jon Williams
“The Mocking Tower” by Daniel Abraham
“Hrunting” by C. J. Cherryh
“A Long, Cold Trail” by Garth Nix
“When I Was a Highwayman” by Ellen Kushner
“The Smoke of Gold Is Glory” by Scott Lynch
“The Colgrid Conundrum” by Rich Larson
“The King’s Evil” by Elizabeth Bear
“Waterfalling” by Lavie Tidhar        
“The Sword Tyraste” by Cecelia Holland
“The Sons of the Dragon” by George R. R. Martin
 
And an introduction by Gardner Dozois

“When fine writer and expert editor [Gardner] Dozois beckons, authors deliver—and this surely will be one of the year’s essential anthologies.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
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About the author

Gardner Dozois has been inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame. He has won fifteen Hugo Awards, a World Fantasy Award, and thirty-four Locus Awards for his editing work, as well as two Nebula Awards and a Sidewise Award for his own writing. He was the editor of the leading science fiction magazine, Asimov’s Science Fiction, for twenty years, and is also the editor of the anthology series The Year’s Best Science Fiction, now in its thirty-fourth collection. He is the author or editor of more than a hundred books. His two most recent anthologies, Dangerous Women and Rogues, were New York Times bestsellers.
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Reviews

4.4
5 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Bantam
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Published on
Oct 10, 2017
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Pages
544
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ISBN
9780399593772
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Action & Adventure
Fiction / Fantasy / Collections & Anthologies
Fiction / Fantasy / Epic
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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George R. R. Martin
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

A thrilling collection of twenty-one original stories by an all-star list of contributors—including a new A Game of Thrones story by George R. R. Martin!
 
If you’re a fan of fiction that is more than just black and white, this latest story collection from #1 New York Times bestselling author George R. R. Martin and award-winning editor Gardner Dozois is filled with subtle shades of gray. Twenty-one all-original stories, by an all-star list of contributors, will delight and astonish you in equal measure with their cunning twists and dazzling reversals. And George R. R. Martin himself offers a brand-new A Game of Thrones tale chronicling one of the biggest rogues in the entire history of Ice and Fire.
 
Follow along with the likes of Gillian Flynn, Joe Abercrombie, Neil Gaiman, Patrick Rothfuss, Scott Lynch, Cherie Priest, Garth Nix, and Connie Willis, as well as other masters of literary sleight-of-hand, in this rogues gallery of stories that will plunder your heart—and yet leave you all the richer for it.
 
Featuring all-new stories by
 
Joe Abercrombie • Daniel Abraham • David W. Ball • Paul Cornell • Bradley Denton • Phyllis Eisenstein • Gillian Flynn • Neil Gaiman • Matthew Hughes • Joe R. Lansdale • Scott Lynch • Garth Nix • Cherie Priest • Patrick Rothfuss • Steven Saylor • Michael Swanwick • Lisa Tuttle • Carrie Vaughn • Walter Jon Williams • Connie Willis
 
And an Introduction by George R. R. Martin!

Praise for Rogues
 
“Not a single bad story in the bunch . . . The table of contents alone will make fans from all genre aisles salivate.”—Library Journal
Kevin Hearne
From the author of The Iron Druid Chronicles, a thrilling novel that kicks off a fantasy series with an entirely new mythology—complete with shape-shifting bards, fire-wielding giants, and children who can speak to astonishing beasts

MOTHER AND WARRIOR
Tallynd is a soldier who has already survived her toughest battle: losing her husband. But now she finds herself on the front lines of an invasion of giants, intent on wiping out the entire kingdom, including Tallynd’s two sons—all that she has left. The stakes have never been higher. If Tallynd fails, her boys may never become men.

SCHOLAR AND SPY
Dervan is an historian who longs for a simple, quiet life. But he’s drawn into intrigue when he’s hired to record the tales of a mysterious bard who may be a spy or even an assassin for a rival kingdom. As the bard shares his fantastical stories, Dervan makes a shocking discovery: He may have a connection to the tales, one that will bring his own secrets to light.  

REBEL AND HERO
Abhi’s family have always been hunters, but Abhi wants to choose a different life for himself. Embarking on a journey of self-discovery, Abhi soon learns that his destiny is far greater than he imagined: a powerful new magic thrust upon him may hold the key to defeating the giants once and for all—if it doesn’t destroy him first.

Set in a magical world of terror and wonder, this novel is a deeply felt epic of courage and war, in which the fates of these characters intertwine—and where ordinary people become heroes, and their lives become legend.

Advance praise for A Plague of Giants

“You’ll laugh and cry and crave mustard as you’re immersed in the literal magic of storytelling in Kevin Hearne’s vivid new epic fantasy. I have experienced acute withdrawal symptoms since the book ended. I don’t want to leave this world.”—Beth Cato, author of Breath of Earth and The Clockwork Dagger

“A Plague of Giants is an absorbing epic fantasy, with clever storytelling that allows its many threads to each feel important, personal, and memorable. I’m very much looking forward to the sequel!”—James Islington, author of The Shadow of What Was Lost

“A Plague of Giants is a rare masterpiece that’s both current and timeless, groundbreaking yet traditional, merging the fantasy bones of Tolkien and Rothfuss with a wide cast of characters who’ll break your heart while reminding you of your humanity. This book truly resonates and will haunt you long after the last page.”—Delilah S. Dawson, author of Star Wars: Phasma
Book 2
The gods have been proven mortal and new heroes will arise as the battle continues in the sequel to Age of Myth—from the author of the Riyria Revelations and Riyria Chronicles series.

In Age of Myth, fantasy master Michael J. Sullivan launched readers on an epic journey of magic and adventure, heroism and betrayal, love and loss. Now the thrilling saga continues as the human uprising is threatened by powerful enemies from without—and bitter rivalries from within.

Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhunes make it all but impossible to unite against the common foe. And even if the clans can join forces, how will they defeat an enemy whose magical prowess renders them indistinguishable from gods?

The answer lies across the sea in a faraway land populated by a reclusive and dour race who feel nothing but disdain for both Fhrey and mankind. With time running out, Persephone leads the gifted young seer Suri, the Fhrey sorceress Arion, and a small band of misfits in a desperate search for aid—a quest that will take them into the darkest depths of Elan. There, an ancient adversary waits, as fearsome as it is deadly.

Don’t miss any of Michael J. Sullivan’s Legends of the First Empire novels:
AGE OF MYTH | AGE OF SWORDS (Coming soon!)

Praise for Michael J. Sullivan

“If you enjoy epic fantasy, and are perhaps hungering for something with timeless appeal, then I highly recommend picking up Age of Myth.”—The BiblioSanctum, on Age of Myth

“Hair-raising escapes, flashy sword fights, and faithful friendship complete the formula for good old-fashioned escapist fun.”—Publishers Weekly, on Theft of Swords

“Filled with adventure and clever dialog and featuring a pair of not-quite-heroes whose loyalties to each other provide them with their greatest strength, this epic fantasy showcases the arrival of a master storyteller.”—Library Journal, on Theft of Swords

“With less gore and a smaller cast of characters than George R. R. Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire but equally satisfying, Sullivan’s epic fantasy will be gaining fans at exponential rates.”—Library Journal, on The Rose and the Thorn
George R. R. Martin
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY LOS ANGELES TIMES AND BUZZFEED • Taking place nearly a century before the events of A Game of Thrones, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms compiles the first three official prequel novellas to George R. R. Martin’s ongoing masterwork, A Song of Ice and Fire. These never-before-collected adventures recount an age when the Targaryen line still holds the Iron Throne, and the memory of the last dragon has not yet passed from living consciousness.
 
Before Tyrion Lannister and Podrick Payne, there was Dunk and Egg. A young, naïve but ultimately courageous hedge knight, Ser Duncan the Tall towers above his rivals—in stature if not experience. Tagging along is his diminutive squire, a boy called Egg—whose true name is hidden from all he and Dunk encounter. Though more improbable heroes may not be found in all of Westeros, great destinies lay ahead for these two . . . as do powerful foes, royal intrigue, and outrageous exploits.
 
Featuring more than 160 all-new illustrations by Gary Gianni, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms is a must-have collection that proves chivalry isn’t dead—yet.

Praise for A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms

“Readers who already love Martin and his ability to bring visceral human drama out of any story will be thrilled to find this trilogy brought together and injected with extra life.”—Booklist

“The real reason to check out this collection is that it’s simply great storytelling. Martin crafts a living, breathing world in a way few authors can. . . . [Gianni’s illustrations] really bring the events of the novellas to life in beautiful fashion.”—Tech Times

“Stirring . . . As Tolkien has his Silmarillion, so [George R. R.] Martin has this trilogy of foundational tales. They succeed on their own, but in addition, they succeed in making fans want more.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Pure fantasy adventure, with two of the most likable protagonists George R. R. Martin has ever penned.”—Bustle

“A must-read for Martin’s legion of fans . . . a rousing prelude to [his] bestselling Song of Ice and Fire saga . . . rich in human drama and the colorful worldbuilding that distinguishes other books in the series.”—Publishers Weekly
Book 2
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY BUZZFEED AND THE INDEPENDENT • Ranking alongside George R. R. Martin as a groundbreaking master of fantasy, Robin Hobb delivers the second book in her long-awaited Fitz and the Fool trilogy.

The harrowing adventures of FitzChivalry Farseer and his enigmatic friend the Fool continue in Robin Hobb’s triumphant follow-up to Fool’s Assassin. But Fool’s Quest is more than just a sequel. With the artistry and imagination her fans have come to expect, Hobb builds masterfully on all that has gone before, revealing devastating secrets and shocking conspiracies that cast a dark shadow over the history of Fitz and his world—a shadow that now stretches to darken all future hope.

Long ago, Fitz and the Fool changed the world, bringing back the magic of dragons and securing both the Farseer succession and the stability of the kingdom. Or so they thought. But now the Fool is near death, maimed by mysterious pale-skinned figures whose plans for world domination hinge upon the powers the Fool may share with Fitz’s own daughter. 

Distracted by the Fool’s perilous health, and swept up against his will in the intrigues of the royal court, Fitz lets down his guard . . . and in a horrible instant, his world is undone and his beloved daughter stolen away by those who would use her as they had once sought to use the Fool—as a weapon.

But FitzChivalry Farseer is not without weapons of his own. An ancient magic still lives in his veins. And though he may have let his skills as royal assassin diminish over the years, such things, once learned, are not so easily forgotten.

Now enemies and friends alike are about to learn that nothing is more dangerous than a man who has nothing left to lose.

Praise for Fool’s Quest
 
“A complex tapestry of adventure, betrayal, destiny, and unrelenting peril . . . Hobb’s expertise is evident as always.”—Publishers Weekly
 
“Glorious and beautiful storytelling . . . Hobb lets rip with revelations, treachery, vengeance, sword fights and full on magical mayhem.”—SciFiNow
 
“If readers have any doubt that Robin Hobb is one of the finest writers in the fantasy genre, then they haven’t read any of her work.”—SFFWorld

“Hobb finds a way to always show us more details of the universe she’s been building over the course of the four previous series. . . . The friendship of Fitz and the Fool brings danger to them both, but it’s one of the most touching in fantasy fiction.”—Library Journal (starred review)

Praise for Robin Hobb and Fool’s Assassin

“Fantasy as it ought to be written.”—George R. R. Martin

“Hobb knows the complicated workings of the wayward human heart, and she takes time to depict them in her tale, to tell her story sweetly, insistently, compellingly. . . . A book meant to be inhabited rather than run through.”—The Seattle Times

“[FitzChivalry Farseer is] one of the best characters in fantasy literature.”—Fantasy Book Review

“[Hobb’s] prose sparkles, her characters leap off the page.”—Tor.com

“Modern fantasy at its irresistible best.”—The Guardian

“Fantastic . . . emotionally rich storytelling.”—Library Journal (starred review)




From the Hardcover edition.
George R. R. Martin
From George R. R. Martin's Introduction to Warriors:

"People have been telling stories about warriors for as long as they have been telling stories. Since Homer first sang the wrath of Achilles and the ancient Sumerians set down their tales of Gilgamesh, warriors, soldiers, and fighters have fascinated us; they are a part of every culture, every literary tradition, every genre. All Quiet on the Western Front, From Here to Eternity, and The Red Badge of Courage have become part of our literary canon, taught in classrooms all around the country and the world. Our contributors make up an all-star lineup of award-winning and bestselling writers, representing a dozen different publishers and as many genres. We asked each of them for the same thing—a story about a warrior. Some chose to write in the genre they're best known for. Some decided to try something different. You will find warriors of every shape, size, and color in these pages, warriors from every epoch of human history, from yesterday and today and tomorrow, and from worlds that never were. Some of the stories will make you sad, some will make you laugh, and many will keep you on the edge of your seat."

The stories in the second mass market volume of this book are:

Introduction: Stories of the Spinner Rack, by George R. R. Martin

Seven Years from Home, by Naomi Novik

Dirae, by Peter S. Beagle

Ancient Ways, by S. M. Stirling

The Scroll, by David Ball

Recidivist, by Gardner Dozois

Ninieslando, by Howard Waldrop

Out of the Dark, by David Weber

Many of these writers are bestsellers. All of them are storytellers of the highest quality. Together they make a volume of unforgettable reading.

At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

Book 1
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Nearly twenty years ago, Robin Hobb burst upon the fantasy scene with the first of her acclaimed Farseer novels, Assassin’s Apprentice, which introduced the characters of FitzChivalry Farseer and his uncanny friend the Fool. A watershed moment in modern fantasy, this novel—and those that followed—broke exciting new ground in a beloved genre. Together with George R. R. Martin, Robin Hobb helped pave the way for such talented new voices as Scott Lynch, Brandon Sanderson, and Naomi Novik.
 
Over the years, Hobb’s imagination has soared throughout the mythic lands of the Six Duchies in such bestselling series as the Liveship Traders Trilogy and the Rain Wilds Chronicles. But no matter how far she roamed, her heart always remained with Fitz. And now, at last, she has come home, with an astonishing new novel that opens a dark and gripping chapter in the Farseer saga.
 
FitzChivalry—royal bastard and former king’s assassin—has left his life of intrigue behind. As far as the rest of the world knows, FitzChivalry Farseer is dead and buried. Masquerading as Tom Badgerlock, Fitz is now married to his childhood sweetheart, Molly, and leading the quiet life of a country squire.
 
Though Fitz is haunted by the disappearance of the Fool, who did so much to shape Fitz into the man he has become, such private hurts are put aside in the business of daily life, at least until the appearance of menacing, pale-skinned strangers casts a sinister shadow over Fitz’s past . . . and his future.
 
Now, to protect his new life, the former assassin must once again take up his old one. . . .

Praise for Fool’s Assassin
 
“Hobb knows the complicated workings of the wayward human heart, and she takes time to depict them in her tale, to tell her story sweetly, insistently, compellingly. . . . A book meant to be inhabited rather than run through.”—The Seattle Times
 
“[FitzChivalry Farseer is] one of the best characters in fantasy literature.”—Fantasy Book Review
 
“[Hobb’s] prose sparkles, her characters leap off the page.”—Tor.com
 
“Modern fantasy at its irresistible best.”—The Guardian
 
“Fantastic . . . emotionally rich storytelling.”—Library Journal (starred review)

Praise for Robin Hobb
 
“Fantasy as it ought to be written . . . Robin Hobb’s books are diamonds in a sea of zircons.”—George R. R. Martin


From the Hardcover edition.
Book 3
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The stunning conclusion to Robin Hobb’s Fitz and the Fool trilogy, which began with Fool’s Assassin and Fool’s Quest

“Every new Robin Hobb novel is a cause for celebration. Along with millions of her other fans, I delight in every visit to the Six Duchies, the Rain Wilds, and the Out Islands, and can’t wait to see where she’ll take me next.”—George R. R. Martin 

More than twenty years ago, the first epic fantasy novel featuring FitzChivalry Farseer and his mysterious, often maddening friend the Fool struck like a bolt of brilliant lightning. Now New York Times bestselling author Robin Hobb brings to a momentous close the third trilogy featuring these beloved characters in a novel of unsurpassed artistry that is sure to endure as one of the great masterworks of the genre.

Fitz’s young daughter, Bee, has been kidnapped by the Servants, a secret society whose members not only dream of possible futures but use their prophecies to add to their wealth and influence. Bee plays a crucial part in these dreams—but just what part remains uncertain.

As Bee is dragged by her sadistic captors across half the world, Fitz and the Fool, believing her dead, embark on a mission of revenge that will take them to the distant island where the Servants reside—a place the Fool once called home and later called prison. It was a hell the Fool escaped, maimed and blinded, swearing never to return.

For all his injuries, however, the Fool is not as helpless as he seems. He is a dreamer too, able to shape the future. And though Fitz is no longer the peerless assassin of his youth, he remains a man to be reckoned with—deadly with blades and poison, and adept in Farseer magic. And their goal is simple: to make sure not a single Servant survives their scourge.

PRAISE FOR ROBIN HOBB

Fool’s Assassin

“Hobb knows the complicated workings of the wayward human heart, and she takes time to depict them in her tale, to tell her story sweetly, insistently, compellingly. . . . A book meant to be inhabited rather than run through.”—The Seattle Times

“[Hobb’s] prose sparkles, her characters leap off the page.”—Tor.com

“Fantastic . . . emotionally rich storytelling.”—Library Journal (starred review)

Fool’s Quest

“A complex tapestry of adventure, betrayal, destiny, and unrelenting peril . . . Hobb’s expertise is evident as always.”—Publishers Weekly

“Glorious and beautiful storytelling . . . Hobb lets rip with revelations, treachery, vengeance, sword fights and full on magical mayhem.”—SciFiNow

“If readers have any doubt that Robin Hobb is one of the finest writers in the fantasy genre, then they haven’t read any of her work.”—SFFWorld
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