The word "swashbuckling" was invented for this novel. In antique, jewel-toned words ("bambakion," "buskin, "bodkin") and sentences as meandering and adventuresome as the plot itself, Gentlemen of the Road gallops after Amram and Zelikman, a mismatched pair of fortune-hunters in tenth-century Khazaria. They are far from your average adventurers—Amram is an Abyssinian who looks like a thug, carries a Viking ax named Mother-Defiler, and behaves like royalty, and Zelikman is a moody, ascetic German Jew with an abiding affection only for his horse. Their small-time swindles take a turn for the extraordinary when a foundling they've been conscripted to deliver to distant relatives turns out to be an orphaned prince bent on revenging his father's death ...
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