Monday, September 06, 2010

Review: The Bent Sword by Stephen Gashler

Book description:

When a daydreaming peasant named Steffin decides to take control of his own destiny, an adventure begins that has serious consequences. Though his adventures are reckless, Steffin's passion is contagious, and he eventually recruits men to fight against his nemesis, the Lord of Boredom. Yet, the journey is difficult, and problems constantly block the path these comrades are taking. Will the Lord of Boredom succeed in quelling what could be the greatest of all adventures? The Bent Sword is as an inspiration for anyone who ever wondered why life isn’t more like a storybook.

Source: Stephen Gashler (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

Gashler wove two stories in one. The fantasy and the reality, different yet the same in one element: magic. Clever and humorous, the story assumed a life of its own and thrived within our inner child-selves, rekindling a passion for creation. Impossibilities are twisted into possibilities in this debut. It makes one wonder about the logic of children, whether they do not have basis or have the wrong basis or adults simply have lost their imaginative logic.

Steffin, a simple peasant from Peaville, is a dreamer. With a burning passion for wondrous and epic quests, living in a very boring neighbourhood has proven to be difficult and his life has become a series of routines until he meets a mysterious sage who tells him about his destiny. Energized and thirsty for adventures, he sets out to figure out things and truths about his fate and his world. But not all things are as they seem. Future is both predestined and changeable, bending to our will and fighting spirit. Together with his recruits they set out to fulfil their quest in a reckless and passionate attempt, battling their nemesis on the way.

It was a bit difficult for me to really get into the story. But as I watched Steffin’s journey and began to see how the line between fantasy and reality blurred, I found myself wanting to find out more about the fates of the characters. The world of dreams was a very interesting place to be in. It was filled with the stuff that cartoons are made up of, something so pure and untainted by the defiant logic of reality. I loved the twists and turns of the story. They kept the plot interesting. The sarcasm and humor of the characters brought a great deal of entertainment.

The Bent Sword is completely hilarious, inspirational, unpredictable and original. Sometimes it is downright weird. But it eventually summed up to a story filled with the dreams and nightmares that make up our lives. In the end, it is not God who is responsible for our downfalls but us. We write our own stories.



  1. Sounds like an amusing story! Nice review :)

  2. What a unique-sounding book! The fantasy element is really cool. Sounds like the perfect book to escape in. Fantastic review!

  3. Thank you for your detailed review. It means a lot that you take time to write such excellent thoughts.