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Publisher's Summary

The gathering forces of the Dark Powers threaten the world of man. The legions of Faery, aided by trolls, demons, and the Wild Hunt itself, are poised to overthrow the Realms of Light. Holger Carlsen, a bemused and puzzled twentieth-century man mysteriously snatched out of time, finds himself the key figure in the conflict. Arrayed against him are the dragons, giants, and elfin warriors of the armies of Chaos and the beautiful sorceress Morgan le Fay. On his side are a vague prophecy, a quarrelsome dwarf, and a beautiful woman who can turn herself into a swan, not to mention Papillon, the magnificent battle horse, and a full set of perfectly fitting armor, both of which were waiting for him when he entered the magical realm. The shield bears three hearts and three lions—the only clue to Holger Carlsen’s true identity. Could Carlsen really be a legendary hero, the only man who can save the world?
©1953 Fantasy House, Inc. 1961 by Poul Anderson (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Jim "The Impatient" on 03-24-17


I read the hardback years ago and loved it. With all the heavy accents, you have to concentrate with this one. For the first hour I was enjoying the unusual language. By the end of the day, my mind was wondering. I tried multiple times to concentrate, but the narrator's style when not doing voices was putting me to sleep. I tried to CLING TO MY PATIENCE WITH BOTH HANDS, but it did not work. Listen to the sample to see if the narrator can keep you awake. I thought this take on knights, swan women, elves, dwarves, manticores, unicorns, griffins, Morgan Fey and others was unique.


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43 of 49 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Easy Reader on 07-10-12

Best. Narrator. EVER!

This was a favorite book of mine many (MANY) years ago, and I was interested in remembering why I liked it so much. It's a great story, a stand-out among many of the same genre from the same time.

I like the slowly revealing details of the quest as the hero recovers memories. I like that there are many different encounters with many different challenges instead of one huge mega-battle. I like the humor. I like the scientific-nerd-in-a-magical-environment. His empirical understanding of things that look magical are clever. (See, for example, his analysis of the source of the curse on the Giant's gold. See what I mean? Clever.)

That said, I have to say that Bronson Pinchot is completely phenomenal. I've listened to several of his audiobooks, and he just flabbergasts me with the range of his characterizations. In this book, the hero's slight Danish inflection is done perfectly. The other accents and voices are distinctive and each evokes a particular sense of that character. Honestly, I could listen to this storyteller all day!

This is a classic from the Golden Age of Fantasy, and the narrator is golden. Really, don't miss this one!

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By M. Price on 02-28-17

Classic fantasy at its finest

I first read this story at the age of 18 back in 1973, the chivalry and high romance touched my heart and has stayed with me all these years. I was delighted to find it on Audible but half frightened that the story's magic would have faded. I need not have been concerned, the magic remains untarnished and is brilliantly brought to life by Bronson Pinchot's masterful narration.

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