The Cardinal's Blades

The Cardinal's Blades

4.7 4
by Pierre Pevel
     
 

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Welcome to seventeenth-century Paris, where intrigue, duels, and spies are rife and Cardinal Richelieu’s men may be prevailed upon to risk life and limb in the name of France at a moment’s notice. And with war on the horizon, the defense of the nation has never been more pressing.

Danger is rising from the south—an insidious plot that could end

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Overview

Welcome to seventeenth-century Paris, where intrigue, duels, and spies are rife and Cardinal Richelieu’s men may be prevailed upon to risk life and limb in the name of France at a moment’s notice. And with war on the horizon, the defense of the nation has never been more pressing.

Danger is rising from the south—an insidious plot that could end with a huge dragon-shaped shadow falling over France, a shadow cast by dragons quite unlike the pet dragonets that roam the cities like stray cats, or the tame wyverns men ride like horses, high over the Parisian rooftops. These dragons and their descendants are ancient, terrible, and powerful ... and their plans contain little room for the lives or freedom of men.

Cardinal Richelieu has nowhere else to turn; Captain La Fargue and his elite group of men, the Cardinal’s Blades, must turn the tide. They must hold the deadly Black Claw cult at bay, root out traitors to the crown, rescue prisoners, and fulfill their mission for the Cardinal, for their country, but above all for themselves.

It’s death or victory. And the victory has never been less certain.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Pevel, winner of the 2002 Grand Prix de l'Imaginaire and the 2005 Prix Imaginales, makes a stunning English-language debut with this breathless, swashbuckling tale of intrigue, spying, and swordfights. In an alternate 17th-century Paris, dragonnets are exotic pets, wyverns are high-class riding mounts, and drac thugs are the coarsest of mercenaries. After a five-year hiatus, Cardinal Richelieu reunites his elite force to aid France in its complex relationship with Spain's Black Claw cult of half-dragon royalty. A mostly straightforward adventure plot leaves plenty of room for character development, drama, and excitement. Clegg's solid translation reads pleasingly as culturally French without the language ever feeling stilted or unnatural. Published in France to great acclaim in 2007, Pevel's adventure is just as likely to charm Anglophone audiences who enjoy action-packed adventure with a true historical sensibility. (Oct.)
Total Sci-Fi Online
"Bold and completely absorbing, Pevel's English-language debut is exciting stuff."
Dark Wolf's Fantasy Reviews
"As an avid reader and an admirer of the Alexandre Dumas works, I found in The Cardinal's Blades a novel very much to my liking.... A fast-moving story, full of action, intrigue, and swashbuckling adventures."
Strange Horizons
"If I had to sum up The Cardinal's Blades in two words, they would be: great fun. This is the France of Alexandre Dumas and Fanfan la Tulipe: a land of flashing blades and break-neck chases, beautiful women and gallant warriors, of masquerades and midnight plots and sword play. The feel is that of classical Romance--we are here in the realms of The Three Musketeers--and while dragons and their schemes are the engine of the plot, they are shadowy, threatening creatures, far removed from the allies of Temeraire and Dragonflight. This is also alternate history, and history plays an important part in the plot."
From the Publisher
"A fast-moving story, full of action, intrigue, and swashbuckling adventures."
—Dark Wolf’s Fantasy Reviews

"[Pierre] Pevel…makes a stunning English-language debut with this breathless, swashbuckling tale of intrigue, spying, and swordfights… Pevel's adventure is…likely to charm Anglophone audiences who enjoy action-packed adventure with a true historical sensibility."
— Publishers Weekly starred review

Library Journal
Recalled from exile and disgrace by Cardinal Richelieu himself to reform the elite group of mounted swordsmen known as the Cardinal's Blades, Capt. Etienne-Louis de La Fargue embarks on a mission of great delicacy that could affect the tentative relations between France and its greatest enemy and rival, Spain. All is not as it seems, however, in a 17th-century Europe in which shadowy dragons vie for power behind the scenes, cardinals keep dragonets for pets, and enemies one day may be friends the next. VERDICT The English-language debut by one of France's leading fantasy authors calls to mind the swashbuckling adventures of Alexandre Dumas's The Three Musketeers, as well as the Napoleonic alternative fantasy "Temeraire" novels by Naomi Novik, and it belongs in fantasy collections of any size.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781616142452
Publisher:
Prometheus Books
Publication date:
10/01/2010
Pages:
314
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)

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