The Nadir army heads for Dros Delnoch, a keep guarding a mountain pass. Druss the Legend comes out of retirement for one last battle. But even with Rek the baresark and the earl of Delnoch's daughter help Druss and eleven thousand men stand up against an advancing army many times their size?
I'll be honest with you. My brother pushed this on me almost a year ago and I wasn't in a hurry to read it. I've read a few David Gemmell books before and it takes a special book to get me to read Tolkien-esque fantasy. I've never found Gemmell's writing to be particularly good.
While I don't find Gemmell's writing to be good, he sure knows WHAT to write. The story of Druss whipping the men into shape and the comradery that developes among the men is very moving. In fact, I choked back a couple man tears near the end. Druss's commentary on what it means to be a man is inspiring.
Druss is like a combination of Conan the Barbarian and Clint Eastwood's character from Gran Turino. You know and he knows that his last hurrah has come. Druss knows his value as a Legend to the other soldiers at Dros Delnoch far outweighs his substantial prowess as a warrior.
The other characters are well done as well. Ulric, leader of the Nadir, is a multi-dimensional character. It would have been easy to have him be a malevolent tyrant but he's acutally fairly likeable. Rek, Orrin, and the others also grow into their roles as the story progresses.
I have a lot more to say but I don't want to give anything away. To sum up, this is the ultimate fantasy book for men and the women who appriciate them. Go out and get it!