The Ring of Ikribu (Red Sonja, #1) By David C. Smith

Despite looking like it jumped off a gas station book rack, RED SONJA: THE RING OF IKRIBU is a surprisingly adept pulp fantasy novel that I'm sure would've made Robert E. Howard proud. The sorcery and sword-fighting is near constant, and the story is much darker and more brutal than I was expecting. (Probably because my only previous exposure to Red Sonja was the campy Brigitte Nielsen flick.)
There's not a whole lot to discuss about this novel, since the shallow plot and lightweight characters are exactly what you'd expect from this sort of thing. However, I found myself impressed with the quality of some of the writing, as well as all the really great imagery is sprinkled throughout. The only thing I didn't care for was that the authors decided to give Red Sonja a romantic interest this early in the game. Considering her hard-edged nature, it seemed strange for Sonja to fall so head-over-heels in love only halfway through the very first book in the series.
Fussy readers will find plenty of other nits to pick (For example, just what are the limitations to the sorcerer's magic, anyway? And, when Ikribu's acolytes came to her looking for the ring, why did she hesitate so long before telling them whom she gave it to?)
That being said, a lot of thought and effort was put into this book, and it shows. Anyone interested in fast-paced, blood-soaked fantasy should be sure to check this one out.
Mass Market Paperback Who could deny the appeal, attraction and anomoly of a master swordswoman in a world full of raw, armoured conflict? Red Sonja came about as a chance idea in one of the many Conan stories as a woman who could best Conan at his own game. This is the first of just six novellised stories by David C. Smith and Richard Tierney of some of the adventures of Red Sonja.

This book is clearly a fantasy adventure and a damn fine one at that. The world the title character lives in is almost a dark ages world. It is often called Swords and Sorcery and with good reason. It is a world where there is always someone to fight. Life can be very cheap and yet often all the more valued. It is a world where sorcerous power is greatly feared, horribly powerful and thankfully quite rare.

But not as rare as our heroine. She predates Xena, she predates even Wonder Woman. Red Sonja is very much a one-of-a-kind. Her stories are as much battling whatever she has thrown her lot in with today as the opinion and prejudice of a woman in armour and wielding a sword. And wield it she does. By the end of The Ring Of Ikribu, the reader has lost count of how many enemies Red Sonja has vanquished, some with the heat of ire. Yet she can also be kind and compassionate to those around her. She is a well realized person.

The writing is compelling. Smith and Tierney know how to pace a story, they know how to craft enticing prose, they know how to build distinctive characters to put around their heroine. They also know how to put their heroine through the ringer. And she does not come out entirely unscathed. This book can be as powerful as you let it. I'm looking forward to the other five, some of which I've read before, though a long time ago. I know Red Sonja changes and develops. Such a wonderful character deserves it.
Mass Market Paperback I was pleasantly surprised by the sheer volume of sword and sorcery action thrust upon the readers face from word go. Authors David Smith and Richard Tierney didn't waste time in getting this story off to a fast start. More importantly they maintained the momentum throughout the entire book.

The plot itself is fantasy formulaic as you'd expect, following a linear path from Red Sonja's appearance at a drinking hole through to her eventual journey to face off against an resurrected sorcerer determined to claim the mysterious ring of Ikribu for his sinister means.

There are loads of great moments filled with character development and bloody fantastical battles which are just fun to read. While THE RING OF IKRIBU is first and foremost a book of Red Sonja, I found her not to be the constant center of attention with many characters given time to shine through on the page. This approach added depth and context to the quest.

I can't compliment THE RING OF IKRIBU enough, I simply loved everything about this book and will track down the remaining books in the series as fast as I can.

This review first appeared on my blog: http://justaguythatlikes2read.blogspo... Mass Market Paperback Simple sword & sorcery...

...but not more. The story is set in Hyboria, the world invented by R.E. Howard for his Conan stories. But there is not much left of Conan's Hyboria in Red Sonja's Hyboria - the feeling and atmosphere is a radically different one. Somehow the authors were unable to copy that Conan experience. Other authors have written Conan pastiches, and especially the older ones by de Camp, Nyberg, Carter and Anderson are quite interesting, but here we have a very drawn-out story that would have better been told in a 30-page short story, and even then it would be regarded as second-rate fantasy, as there is no originality, only a collection of stock characters with stock fantasy clichés.

I guess that if this novel hadn't that Hyboria- and Roy-Thomas-connection, nobody would remember this story. Still, if you don't know Hyboria or R.E. Howard or Conan, you might enjoy it.

Mass Market Paperback The first in the series based upon the comic book character of Red Sonja, who was, in turn, based fairly loosely on the Robert E. Howard character of Red Sonya, who appeared in only one story. I was never a fan of the comic but these books are all pretty good. David C. Smith is a very fine writer, but he is constrained here by the nature of the character. His own Oron books are much better in my opinion. Mass Market Paperback

First in a six book series based upon the comic book character of Red Sonja, who was, in turn, loosely based on the character of Red Sonya (with a Y), who was created by Robert E. Howard.

She lived in a savage world in an uncivilized age-a world ruled by men and governed by the sword. They called her Red Sonja-for her flame-red hair, for the smouldering fire of her pride which gave her sword-arm strength that few men could match and none had ever defeated. The Ring of Ikribu (Red Sonja, #1)

read Ô PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB Ë David C. Smith


This novel was better than I expected. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

A sorceror, Asroth, wants to locate a mystical ring in order to increase his power, but is having trouble laying hands on it. He determines that it is located somewhere in a city of 200,000 inhabitants and decides to lay mystic siege to the entire place just to get it. This engenders a lot of opposition including that of the deposed king who hires mercenaries including Red Sonja to help him take his city back. Most of the book in terms of plot deals with the quest to reclaim the city.

That's a very simplified synopsis. Much of the story is in the relationships of the characters, which I am not getting into. Also enjoyable was the recounting of Red Sonja's origin, all told in back story, but related nicely to circumstances occurring in the present.

I've read other reviews of the novel and am frankly surprised at how negative many are. Did these reviewers read the same novel I did? This book presents solid and imaginative sword and sorcery fiction and has several unique factors that elevate it above pedestrian. Some of the supporting characters such as Pellides, Olin, Allas and Tias have strong stories to support the main narrative. There is a convincing romance, a totally unexpected feature in a Red Sonja novel. Some parts moved a little slower than they needed to. But all in all, this novel was a great start to the series. I'll definitely go on to the second. Mass Market Paperback Pretty decent Sword and Sorcery, ticks all the box’s and I do love a Boris Vallejo cover. It’s a good start to the 6 book series and I’m Looking forward to Red Sonja’s next adventure 🗡️ Mass Market Paperback A very solid, dark novel and the first featuring Red Sonja. It has all the elements of a great sword and sorcery tale checking off all the right boxes: central hero to root for, evil sorcerer, magic ring, violence, mystery, monsters, undead, dark foreboding castle, and redemption.
My only issue with the book was the use of some profane language by Sonja in the form of a the a word and the f word. I am by far not a prude, but to me I would have rather heard Sonja saying You go to hell. To me it was a tad jarring and slightly out of character to read a character like Sonja cursing like that despite all that occurred prior to warrant it.
Otherwise an enjoyable read and so far my only one of the 6 book series about her by Smith and Tierney. I would like to read the others if I can find them. Mass Market Paperback SPOILERS for an almost 40 year old book that you probably aren't going to read anyway.

An uninspired sword & sorcery tale and a forgettable slog that took me two months to push through because I kept putting it down and forgetting about it.

Here's how bad this book is: The main villain is killed off screen by a side character, and the secondary villain is killed by an even more minor character at the end. Red Sonja was pretty useless and could have skipped this whole adventure and things would have worked out just fine.

In fact, her actions in this story actually caused the deaths of countless people because she refuses to give a magic item up to someone (for absolutely no reason, mind you) who has the same mission as her (to kill an evil wizard that is on screen once and never actually seen again until they find his corpse. He wins the award for most one-dimensional villain in fantasy literature). The person who wants it gets it anyway after almost everyone dies and immediately kills the big bad with it, thus saving what was left of the day. But, seriously, Sonja single-handedly leads an entire army to its doom because she wants to act like a spoiled brat.

I picked up a few other books in this series when I got this one, but I don't know if I will ever care to read them after trudging through this dumpster fire.

Recommended only if you absolutely have to read anything and everything Red Sonja and/or sword and sorcery. Mass Market Paperback Mit DER RING VON IKRIBU legt der Apex-Verlag den ersten von sechs Red Sonja-Romanen von David C. Smith und Richard Tierney in neuer Übersetzung vor, die Mitte der 80er Jahre schon einmal bei Heyne erschienen sind.
In diesem Sword & Sorcery=Abenteuer schließt sich Red Sonja als Söldnerin einem großen Heer an, um dem erzbösen Zauberer Asroth das Handwerk zu legen. Die Story ist spannend erzählt und hat an einigen Stellen Gänsehaut=Faktor, trotzdem bleibt Luft nach oben. Zum einen bleibt meine Lieblingsbarbarin Red Sonja mir zu farblos und passiv. Die Frage stellt sich, ob sich am Gang der Handlung etwas geändert hätte, wenn sie bei der Mission nicht dabei gewesen wäre. Zum zweiten schildert der Roman den äußerst gefährlichen Weg von Red Sonja und ihren Weggefährten hin zur Burg von Asroth. Es gibt auf dem Weg, der das Ziel ist, viele Hindernisse zu überwinden, aber keinerlei Nebenhandlungen. Zynisch ließe sich die Handlung so zusammenfassen: Auf dem Weg von A nach B kommen tausende von Menschen, Spielball über/unirdischer Mächte, ums Leben, wobei deren Tod besonders sinnlos ist, weil keiner von Ihnen - Red Sonja eingeschlossen - für den Ausgang des Konflikts zwischen uralten magischen Mächten und einer Menschheit, die hauptsächlich als Götteropfer dient, von Bedeutung ist. Aber in der barbarischen Welt von Conan und Red Sonja ist eben das die conditio humana.

Ein Plus dieser Ausgabe ist das kenntnisreiche und sympathische Vorwort von Roy Thomas, langjähriger Chefredakteur bei Marvel und Autor der Comic-Serie Conan.
Sehr geärgert haben mich andererseits die zahlreichen Druckfehler in der Kindle-Ausgabe. Sie zeigen, dass es trotz aller behaupteten Leidenschaft des Herausgebers nur um die schnelle Mark geht. Das Gros der Fehler hätte bereits bei einem flüchtigen Lesedurchgang eines Verlagsmitarbeiters beseitigt werden können. Mass Market Paperback