Series: Tiger And Del #1
Published by Penguin on September 2nd 1986
Genres: Fiction, Fantasy, General
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He was Tige, born of the desert winds, raised as a slave and winning his freedom by weaving a special kind of magic with a warrior's skill. Now he was an almost legendary sword-dancer, ready to take on any challenge—if the price was right...or if the woman pretty enough.
She was Del, born of ice and storm, trained by the greatest of Northern sword masters. Now, her ritual training completed and steeped in the special magic of her own runesword, she had come South in search of the young brother stolen five years before.
But even Del could not master all the dangers of the deadly Punja alone. And meeting Del, Tiger could not turn back from the most intriguing challenge he'd ever faced—the challenge of a magical, mysterious sword-dancer of the North...
Relatively few reviewers hold such sway that their recommendations cause me to drop my current book commitments in lieu of reading their latest reviewed book. Ya’ll Angie has that power. Combine this with a glowing review from See Michelle Read and I am done for – hook, line, and sinker.
The book in question is Sword-Dancer by Jennifer Roberson is currently out of print I think. However, lucky me, I date someone who comes from a literate family. You see, my boyfriend’s grandmother left behind a treasure trove of fantasy novels, and with some digging, I found among her shelves a faded copy of Sword-Dancer, complete with a receipt inside from the 1980s. Finding this book does make me sad that I will never get to meet my boyfriend’s grandmother, because with her fierce taste in books, I think we would have gotten along very well.
Sword-Dancer by Jennifer Roberson, despite it’s awful cover is a wonderful fantasy read with sexytimes and kissing. The story opens with Tiger chilling out in a southern tavern. He’s a macho womanizing mercenary. Enter Del, a strong gorgeous beauty from the North who needs a guide through the southern desert. Of course, she continually butts heads with Tiger. He believes Del can’t handle a sword, although he would be totally down for it if Del touched his sword. Anyways, this is a journey rife with discovery, adventure, and most important SWORD FIGHTS oh oh and cannibals. Ya’ll I love a good cannibal cameo.
Tiger is a chauv at first, but obviously we see him change. The entire book is told from his perspective, so you would have to be pretty dense if you didn’t notice a change. We see him go from think all females are weak and need protecting, to acknowledging what I like to call girl power.
“Be serious bascha– you know as well as I do that very few women can handle a knife well, let alone a sword.”
“Perhaps because too often the men won’t let us.” She shook her head. “You judge too quickly. You deny me my skill, but expect me to honor yours.”
I felt the desert setting really comes to life in Sword-Dancer. One can feel the desperation of a sand storm, and just how scary the situation is. We see the cruelty of different groups of people. My heart leaped with joy at the vision of an oasis. You know, I think I’d be down for reading more desert-type setting books after finishing this one.
Sword-Dancer by Jennifer Roberson is a quick fantasy read, topping out at under 300 pages, which in this genre is a lightweight. I thought it was super easy to sink into and was hooked by Tiger’s voice. I hope the rest of the series holds up to this gripping book.
Retro Friday Reviews is a weekly meme hosted by Angieville where you give an older title some love on Fridays.
Disclosure: Borrowed copy.
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