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Diana L. Paxson (Berkeley, CA)

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The Broken Sword (FANTASY MASTERWORKS)
The Broken Sword (FANTASY MASTERWORKS)
by Poul Anderson
Edition: Paperback

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The lost and found sword, 20 Nov. 2003
One afternoon in 1954 I walked into the library to do research for a school report and ended up at the "new aquisitions" bin instead. There I found a slim volume with "sword" in the title, opened it, and still standing by the bin, read it from cover to cover. I then rushed home without taking proper note of title or author, and spent the next ten years trying to identify it. It was only when a fellow-graduate-student took me to a party at Poul's house that I found the book once more, and re-read it with even more delight.
THE BROKEN SWORD made an indelible impression. It was the first work I had read which really conveyed what it would be like to live in a culture with a completely different worldview. Anderson's Danish background gave him a real feel for the saga style. Here was a marvelous world of stern Vikings and unearthly elves, gods and trolls, heroic combats and tragic courage.
The revised version, which was written after Poul joined the Society for Creative Anachronism, also included some changes in the battle scenes based on his new expertise.
Either way, the book was wonderful then, and is just as good a read almost fifty years later.


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