Sword-Dancer (Tiger and Del #1)
by Jennifer Roberson
SOUTHRON BLADE SKILL,
NORTHERN SWORD MAGIC…
He was Tiger, born of the desert winds, raised as a slave and winning his freedom by weaving a special kind of magic with a warrior’s skill. Now he was an almost legendary sword-dancer, ready to take on any challenge–if the price was right…or the woman pretty enough.
She was Del, born of ice and storm, trained by the greatest of Northern sword masters. Now, her ritual training completed, and steeped in the special magic of her own runesword, she had come south in search of the young brother stolen five years before.
But even Del could not master all the dangers of the deadly Punja alone. And meeting Del, Tiger could not turn back from the most intriguing challenge he’d ever faced–the challenge of a magical, mysterious sword-dancer of the North.
The book in its entirety is narrated by Tiger which is somewhat disappointing since we never get to hear Del’s inner voice but once you get over that, you enjoy Tiger’s way of seeing things. Tiger’s an arrogant male chauvinist though I’ll admit he has a right to his arrogance. Del is the antithesis of the kind of woman he and every other Southron male are used to. Tiger’s sword skill which is unmatched in almost all of the South is matched by Del…a woman! Tiger is off put and almost afraid (though he certainly wouldn’t admit to it) of Del’s sword, for it is magic and Tiger puts his faith in skill.
The world building is detailed which was surprising since the novel was kind of short but beautifully rendered nonetheless. There is depth to the characters and if you take to the series, you’ll absolutely fall in love with them. It’s true that Tiger’s views on women are not very flattering but when you get further into the series, you’ll se them changing and evolving. This is just the first book in the series but if the books are short, the series is long enough to give satisfaction. There are eight books out of which only one is yet unpublished. It’s an amazing fantasy romance, though the romance part doesn’t really take off until the second or third book. You can see it’s headed in that direction almost from the beginning but since you don’t know Del’s thoughts, its hard to tell. The characters as well as their back stories have layers upon layers which will unravel the further you get into the series.
The average rating for this book is 4/5 stars and that would be my opinion as well. I wont say I haven’t read better but I will say that it is still unique.