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19 April 2009

The Privilege of the Sword (Swords of Riverside)

The Privilege of the Sword by Ellen Kushner is the second book that takes place in Riverside. This book is listed as fantasy but reads more like historical fiction - it is set in a made-up city similar to old London.

Katherine Talbert has heard stories of her uncle the Mad Duke Tremontaine but has never met him. Now, at fifteen, she is summoned to his home in the city. If she agrees to go, her family's debt will be forgiven and their wealth restored.

But the Duke is not bringing her to the city for her coming out season - he means to train her as a swordsman. She will be forced to wear pants and train daily until she has the skills to defend the Duke's honor.

As strange as it sounds to Katherine when she leaves home to join the Duke, nothing could prepare her for the strange and queer happenings at his many homes in the city. Every notion she has about society and morality will be put to the test by the Mad Duke.

This is a swashbuckling novel with a twist. I cannot wait for the next volume featuring the dashing and dangerous Katherine Talbert.

Kushner, Ellen. (2006). The Privilege of the Sword. New York: Bantam.

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