While THE LORD OF THE RINGS took the world by storm, Fritz Leiber's fantastic but thoroughly flawed anti-heroes, Fafhrd and Gray Mouser, adventured and stumbled deep within the caves of Inner Earth as well. They wondered and wandered to the edges of the Outer Sea, across the Land of Nehwon and throughout every nook and cranny of gothic Lankhmar, Nehwon's grandest and most mystically corrupt city. Lankhmar, is Leiber's fully-realized, vivid incarnation of urban decay and civilization's corroding effect on the human psyche. Fafhrd and Mouse are not innocents; their world is no land of honor and righteousness. It is a world of human complexities and violent action, of discovery and mystery, of swords and sorcery. In SWORDS AND ICE MAGIC, Fafhrd and Gray Mouser discover how the sadness of The Executioner creates a macabre dance from the point of view of the choreographer. Beauties and beasts explain the dual nature of all life's creatures. And trapped in The Shadowland, our dogmatic duo find the duality of swords and needles, maps and territories, girls and demons...and gods, they learn of the mischievous vanity of the gods. Lost at sea, Gray Mouser becomes a natural philosopher, drifting, captive of the Great Equatorial Current. He wonders about fire and ice, about women and men until they arrive at Rime Isle, a tragic comedy of a place, wandering gods and restless mortals, a comedy with puppets and puppet-masters.
Fritz Leiber (1910-1992) was born in Chicago. His father was a noted Shakespearan actor and Leiber joined his father's company in 1934, and even appeared in a few films. However in 1936 he started writing. As well as producing important and hugely enjoyable fantasy, he was also the author of much acclaimed sf and horror.