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The Dark Lord
     

The Dark Lord

by Jack Heckel
 

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In this hilarious parody of epic fantasy, a young man travels into a dark and magical world, where dwarves, elves, and sorcerers dwell, to restore the balance between good and evil

After spending years as an undercover, evil wizard in the enchanted world of Trelari, Avery hangs up the cloak he wore as the Dark Lord and returns to his

Overview

In this hilarious parody of epic fantasy, a young man travels into a dark and magical world, where dwarves, elves, and sorcerers dwell, to restore the balance between good and evil

After spending years as an undercover, evil wizard in the enchanted world of Trelari, Avery hangs up the cloak he wore as the Dark Lord and returns to his studies at Mysterium University. 

On the day of his homecoming, Avery drunkenly confides in a beautiful stranger, telling her everything about his travels. When Avery awakens, hungover and confused, he discovers that his worst nightmare has come true: the mysterious girl has gone to Trelari to rule as a Dark Queen. 

Avery must travel back to the bewitched land and liberate the magical creatures . . . but in order to do so, he has to join forces with the very people who fought him as the Dark Lord.

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
2016-11-22
In this fantasy, a mage tries to save the same world he'd tormented as an evil wizard—part of his university studies—with help from the heroes who'd fought him. With his reign as Dark Lord in subworld Trelari finally over, innerworlder Avery Stewart heads back to Mysterium University. The mage's dissertation focuses on stabilizing an unbalanced subworld, maybe indefinitely to prevent its eventual destruction. Avery's role as the bad guy was to create an imbalance, with his spell consequently guiding a select group of people who opposed him to "defuse the imbalance." It was a grueling three months Mysterium-time, but Avery finishes 17 days early and plans to enjoy a relaxing night—neither logging his return nor checking in Trelari's reality key at the storeroom. The evening begins well when he meets fellow student Vivian, who seems quite taken by his experiment. The next morning, however, Vivian's gone, as is the key. With assistance from elfin roommate Eldrin Leightner, Avery once again enters Trelari, where Vivian's become the Dark Queen. Slowly reassembling the Heroes of the Ages (who don't recognize him without his Dark Lord makeup), Avery hopes his spell will lead them to vanquish Dark Queen Vivian. But if the shifting Trelari becomes a threat to Mysterium, the latter may feel it necessary to destroy the subworld. Heckel's (The Pitchfork of Destiny, 2016, etc.) offbeat novel, like his previous work, is told with tongue firmly in cheek. Some of the humor is parody (Avery, et al., form the Tolkienian "Company of the Fellowship"), while parts are gleefully silly, like a town's distinct but similarly named inns: Red Dragon, Dead Dragon, etc. Nonetheless, there's unmistakable sincerity, especially once Avery starts seeing the Heroes as real people, rather than mere pawns to confirm his spell's validity. The story likewise excels as fantasy, featuring battles with trolls and orcs and a smashing final act that revels in chaos. Heckel aptly subverts overexplanation of complicated notions (i.e., Mysterium and Trelari's divergent passages of time) with narrator Avery's inability to understand most of it himself. His response to someone telling him his magic makes no sense is: "Exactly." A diverting, heartfelt adventure that provides laughs in between earnest moments and spells.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062359339
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
11/01/2016
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
294,779
File size:
706 KB

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Meet the Author

Jack Heckel’s life is an open book. Actually, it’s the book you are in all hope holding right now (and if you are not holding it, he would like to tell you it can be purchased from any of your finest purveyors of the written word). He is the author of the Charming Tales series and The Dark Lord. Beyond that, Jack aspires to be either a witty, urbane, world traveler who lives on his vintage yacht, The Clever Double Entendre, or a geographically illiterate professor of literature who spends his non-writing time restoring an 18th century lighthouse off a remote part of the Vermont coastline. More than anything, Jack lives for his readers.

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