Lord Darcy
Created by Randall Garrett

In a sort of parallel world where magic and ESP, not to mention knights and castles, co-exist peacefully alongside railroads, handguns and various other modern technology, LORD DARCY, who makes his home in Rouen, France, is the private security expert and Chief Investigator for Richard, Duke of Normandy. Darcy uses magic as an aid to his detective work, in much the same way that Sherlock Holmes used science. Playing Watson to Darcy's Holmes (or Archie to Nero) is Master Sean O Lochlainn, licensed sorceror. Definitely not a hardboiled private eye type of guy, either by temperament or occupation, and yet the stories themselves often display a pulpish energy that more than makes up for it.

The series proved popular enough that it was briefly continued after Garrett's 1987 death. (A debilitating illness left Garrett unable to write for the last seven years of his life, which is why there were no Lord Darcy stories from 1980-1987.)

Anyway, two post-Garrett Lord Darcy novels appeared, both by Michael Kurland: Ten Little Wizards (Ace Books, 1988), and A Study In Sorcery (Ace Books, 1989). Sorry, no bonus points for guessing which tales these novels pastiche/parody.

Interestingly, Kurland's own sf novel , The Unicorn Girl (Pyramid, 1969), though not a Lord Darcy novel, is partially based in Lord Darcy's alternate-reality timeline. It was written while Garrett was very much alive and well, undoubtedly with Garrett's knowledge and approval. Presumably, this is why Kurland got the commission to write the continuation of the Lord Darcy series alost two decades later.

Not to everyone's taste, perhaps, but bound to appeal to those who like ladies in waiting, damsels in distress, and men in pantyhose.





Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. A really big thanks to Rudyard Kennedy for helping me out with this one.

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