06 December, 2016
Gentlemen of the road by Michael Charbon
A warrior with a huge battle axe and scowling expression is seated in a tavern. A lank-haired skinny fellow armed with a rapier insults him and they agree to duel to the death.
An ostler takes bets on the outcome; excitement rises as first one then the other combatant is wounded.
It's a scam of course, the downed warrior recovers out of sight, the two duelists slink away together having made a tidy sum of money.
Zelikman and Amran, our two gentlemen of the road, have wits aplenty and fighting skills to match. When they meet a prince dispossessed by his wicked usurping uncle, and bent on revenge, they see a chance to make real money.
This rollicking, action-paced tale set far away and long ago (Caucasus Mountains, circa A.D. 1000) is saved from being a pot-boiler by sly deft humour.
Title: Gentlemen of the road
Author: Michael Charbon
Reviewed by Christine O.
Christine O has worked in libraries on the North Shore for over 20 years. She likes her fiction to be believable and her non-fiction to be accessible.