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3.92  ·  Rating details ·  272 ratings  ·  24 reviews
He came to the Honey Garden looking for Cyrion. He was a man in grave danger, convinced only one man alive could help him. A man he had heard about in song and story. A man practically everyone knew something about. A man he had never met.
Some said he was the stolen son of a western king, raised by nomads in the desert. A freelance swordsman, a sorcerer, a master of
Published (first published January 1st 1982)
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Average rating 3.92  · 
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mark monday
a number of stories and one novella starring Cyrion the smug, angel-faced do-gooder, master swordsman and master of disguise, righter of wrongs, deliverer of women and children and chubby noblemen (as long as they have their hearts in the right place), deliverer of ironic bon mots at the expense of the nitwits who have the nerve to converse with him in a tavern about their various nitwit plots. this was a favorite of mine when very much younger. I read the stories again and again. the novella, n ...more
Dec 02, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The framing device is genius. Roilant, a slobbish young noble in unspecified danger, attempts to hire the renowned Cyrion--warrior, rogue, troubleshooter, possibly wizard--who, Roilant is convinced, is the only person able to resolve the situation. Instead, in some middling-grade alehouse, he only finds rumors and "you just missed him" comments, with each person contributing a tall-tale story of the prowess of this Cyrion. To Roilant's ever-growing frustration, of course.

And, truthfully, if the
Pam Baddeley
This book is largely a series of tall tales about the title character, connected with an amusing framework where a flabby and unheroic, but not stupid, wealthy young man goes to a tavern in search of an almost mythical swordsman called Cyrion, who he believes is the only one to extricate him from imminent peril. His enquiries about how to find Cyrion elicit stories that people have heard about him, but swear to be true, rather than concrete information on his whereabouts.

As we learn more about C
Raymond St.
Sep 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
It is a truism that villains steal the stage. Milton wrote Paradise Lost to justify God to Man; and Satan swipes every line of the epic. Bad guys gets to camp it up or play it cool, as they wish. They tap into the happy-power of the Id, while the hero struggles to decide why he wants to save the world if it costs him his girl, his rent and his life.
Fantasy readers weary of this disproportion often ask for a hero who isn't a stalwart bore or an emotional kitchen-drawer of repression.

Ms. Lee giv
Apr 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I suspect my love of this book has more to do with the early age at which I imprinted on it, rather than actual quality, but I dearly love it.

The book is arranged around a framing device - a young nobleman needs to hire a mercenary (not just any mercenary, but the best: Cyrion) and spends a day paying the denizens of an inn for information about the elusive swordsman. Each chapter is a story, exaggerated, dramatic, perhaps a bit excessive in its descriptions of Cyrion's beauty and skills, but c
This is a collection of stories featuring the freelance swordsman and sorcerer Cyrion.

* Cyrion in Wax
* A Hero at the Gates
* One Night of the Year
* Cyrion in Bronze
* The Murderous Dove
* Perfidious Amber
* A Lynx with Lions
* Cyrion in Stone (Novella)

Reviewer James Nicholl describes Cyrion as a mix of Sherlock Holmes and Batman with a touch of Zorro, which is a description I don't think I can better.

This is a collection of stories revolving around the titular character, who, on his travels, encounters various people and situations where he needs his wits to get him through. The stories are more like mysteries in the vein of Sherlock Holmes or Edgar Allen Poe's Dupin tales, but taking place in a fantasy setting. A pretty good read with some clever moments.
Feb 12, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is so totally Lymond Chronicles AU fanfic. I would probably like it better if I didn't hate Lymond. Cyrion. Whoever.
3.5 stars. This collection consists of 8 short stories and a novella. I found the novella somewhat contrived.
TW: sexual assault

I've wanted to read this book ever since I read one of its short stories, A Hero At the Gates 5 years ago. Overall, I enjoyed the book. The first half is a collection of short stories tied together by interludes following a man who's searching for the legendary Cyrion, and who's hearing the short stories about him from people he meets in an inn. The second half is a novella-length story that follows on from the man's search for Cyrion. It's fun and ridiculous, but in the end I
Leila Anani
Fantasy/Detective/Anthology – Described as Sherlock Holmes in Medieval Persia this anthology begins like a cross between the Canterbury Tales/1001 Arabian nights where a rather pudgy noble Roliant goes to an inn in search of the mysterious Cyrion. We get seven tales of Cyrion’s exploits, given by patrons of the inn before he finally reveals himself and the final novella deals with how he solves Roiliant’s dilemma that he is engaged to a sorceress who he thinks wants to murder him for his money.

Apr 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: best
Intricately plotted, beautifully written.
Dec 05, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Lee's a great writer, I've no doubt, and good enough prose can usually win me over. Yet, somehow, she manages to muddy and confuse what's otherwise an wonderful premise. Half the novel's an S&S Rashomon – tavern patrons swapping stories about the titular hero Cyrion – and, though the stories themselves are a little overwrought, it seems a perfect opportunity to, when Cyrion arrives halfway through the volume, to shatter all those expectations that've painstakingly be set up for him.

Instead, the
Jan 29, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Una bella sorpresa.
"Sword and sorcery" classica, molto classica.
Il romanzo è diviso in due parti: nella prima la struttura è simile al Decameron, con una cornice comune in cui vengono incastonate storie aventi come protagonista il barbaro Cyrion.
La seconda metà del libro è costituita da un'unica, lunga avventura dello stesso Cyrion.
Il protagonista è una versione dall'intelletto acuto di Conan, e le storie spaziano dallo scontro con il classico stregone cattivo al giallo, passando per il sopranna
Cyclic episodic stories in an interwoven narrative. As seems on par with my recent reactions to Lee's work, I enjoyed the short stories that made up the first half of this work far more than I did the novella of the second half. The short stories were wonderful: very creative, clever little puzzles. The novella? Lee wrote herself in to a world of red herrings and Russian-doll reveals, the constant exchange of which I quickly found tedious.

This is worth reading if you find it on hand, but I would
May 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I read this book back in the early 80s and loved it. I still love it. Just an unusual fantasy, written in an unusual style that attempts to portray a medieval middle eastern flair.

This is a series of short stories describing the adventures of a swordsman, who is more an adventurer than a sell sword. He deals with sorcery with both wit and humor. The stories are told to a young man who is seeking this swordsman for help.
Nov 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
The writing is lush, to the point of being florid at times. Even though I know nothing is quite what it seems, all the twists and turns still manage to surprise. I prefer the framing story and the short stories to the novella but they are all good.
Jul 24, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hallie by: Matt Doyle
Finally finished! Intricate, wordy prose and fun pulp short stories hampered by a bizarre structure and a top-heavy novella at the end. Wish it had focused more on Cyrion himself and less on dumb Roilant's romantic troubles.
Dec 09, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: tanith-lee
Fun collection of long short stories of Cyrion's mysteries. Good storytelling, enjoyable puzzles.
Sep 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The cover art is grotesque. Apart from that, this book is stunning, lush, perfect, sensual, and ultimately sad. It's a perfect book.
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Tanith Lee was a British writer of science fiction, horror, and fantasy. She was the author of 77 novels, 14 collections, and almost 300 short stories. She also wrote four radio plays broadcast by the BBC and two scripts for the UK, science fiction, cult television series "Blake's 7."
Before becoming a full time writer, Lee worked as a file clerk, an assistant librarian, a shop assistant, and a wai

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“Roilant caught himself, with exasperation, slipping into vacuous philosophy, a sure sign his opinion of life was at its very lowest.” 2 likes
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