The Fire Duke

Joel Rosenberg, Author
Joel Rosenberg, Author William Morrow & Company $22 (354p) ISBN 978-0-688-14153-0
Reviewed on: 05/01/1995
Release date: 05/01/1995
Mass Market Paperbound - 368 pages - 978-0-380-72207-5
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Rosenberg is best known for his popular Guardians of the Flame series, which postulated a crossover between our universe and a dungeons-and-dragons-style world. Here, he creates a new crossover world, this one based on a rambling version of watered-down Norse mythology. Torrie Thorsen, Ian Silverstein and Maryanne (Maggie) Christensen are college buddies and expert fencers who go vacationing together at the Thorsen residence in North Dakota. A wolf hunt draws Torrie, Ian and the rest of the menfolk away from the house, allowing Maggie and Torrie's mother to be kidnapped by agents of the Fire Duke. To rescue them, Ian must join forces with Torrie's Uncle Hosea, a mysterious and powerful being who helps the young man channel his latent anger at his abusive father into a positive and deadly force. This paean to masculinity, swordsmanship and the Norse way is often hard to take seriously-as when Torrie cheerfully notes that he was more frightened the first time he tried to slip his hand into a girl's bra than he is facing the deadly Fire Duke. Still, armchair Errol Flynns and latter-day Vikings will probably enjoy all the exuberant, if boyish, derring-do. (May)
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