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Fool's Tavern [Mass Market Paperback]

Ned Resnikoff
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 29 2004
An unusually ragtag, slightly bawdy, and always clever band of six adventurers is thrown together on a royal quest to rid Irrellia of the demon/god Kaos and his army of werewolves . The group, which includes an elf, a wizard, a Halfling, and a woman ("not your freakin' damsel in distress") discovers powers they never knew existed-and Instant Messaging.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly enjoyable Aug. 17 2004
By ocelott
As my title suggests, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. It piqued my interest when I saw that the author was only fourteen, and the writeup on the back of the book looked interesting, so I thought, "Why not?" It was light reading, humourous and thoroughly entertaining. It was fast-paced and well-written, overall, and while there were a few typos (generally not the author's fault), it was a lot of fun. I liked the broad variety of characters that he used, and the tongue-in-cheek way he pokes fun at the cliches of the fantasy genre. I'll keep my eye out for the next book published by Ned Resnikoff.
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3.0 out of 5 stars not bad for a kid July 14 2004
By A Customer
It was a light and entertaining little book, well suited to a long bus commute. Given how young the author is I was mostly interested in seeing if he had some real potential for turning out good fiction when he's older. You can tell it's a first novel and that the author is young but it was a fairly enjoyable book. If the author writes another book I would buy it. I think he's going to be quite good with a few more years experience under his belt.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A good start for a new author. July 12 2004
I actually really liked it, and that's a bit of a surprise. I am a merciless critic of Tolkien-esque High Fantasy AND of child authors, but this book has a sense of humor and doesn't take the subject matter, or the author's writing, too seriously. That's a problem that I've noticed with teen authors like Christopher Paolini and Flavia Bujor--they take themselves far too seriously. This book is meant primarily to just be a funny light read, and it succeeds.
The main character is a wizard named Cade, a wimpy geek who faints at the sight of blood. Through a series of mishaps, he and five other equally unsuited characters wind up being chosen by the gods to get rid of a demigod called Kaos. They're chased from one side of the continent to the other by people who are out to kill them--either for their own personal amusement or because they've been hired by Kaos. Finally, they reach his stronghold, and --well, you'll just have to read the book to find out what happens.
The publishers' blurb compares FT to the Discworld books, but I would say it's more like Piers Anthony's Xanth books. Many random comedy segments are more anachronistic than satire, including things like psychoanalysis (and the inkblot test), personal trainers, IMing, online gaming (if you've ever played Everquest you're going to love this book), and people saying things like "oy gevalt." It has a lot of action, and I thought the fight scenes (which is pretty much three quarters of the book) were well done. It was well paced and gripping -- I pretty much picked it up and didn't put it down again until I reached the last page, despite various obstacles and complications. (For those of you who don't know, it's VERY hard to make a bologna sandwich with one hand.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great read read on several levels July 6 2004
By A Customer
I love this book. It is remarkable that the author is only 14. It is not only a great adventure story, it is a very funny parody of the fantasy genre. It makes fun of all the fantasy cliches. And it ihas some very perceptive social satire. Adults and kids can enjoy this book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.5 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly enjoyable Aug. 16 2004
By ocelott - Published on Amazon.com
As my title suggests, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. It piqued my interest when I saw that the author was only fourteen, and the writeup on the back of the book looked interesting, so I thought, "Why not?" It was light reading, humourous and thoroughly entertaining. It was fast-paced and well-written, overall, and while there were a few typos (generally not the author's fault), it was a lot of fun. I liked the broad variety of characters that he used, and the tongue-in-cheek way he pokes fun at the cliches of the fantasy genre. I'll keep my eye out for the next book published by Ned Resnikoff.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars not bad for a kid July 13 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
It was a light and entertaining little book, well suited to a long bus commute. Given how young the author is I was mostly interested in seeing if he had some real potential for turning out good fiction when he's older. You can tell it's a first novel and that the author is young but it was a fairly enjoyable book. If the author writes another book I would buy it. I think he's going to be quite good with a few more years experience under his belt.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good start for a new author. July 12 2004
By Merricat - Published on Amazon.com
I actually really liked it, and that's a bit of a surprise. I am a merciless critic of Tolkien-esque High Fantasy AND of child authors, but this book has a sense of humor and doesn't take the subject matter, or the author's writing, too seriously. That's a problem that I've noticed with teen authors like Christopher Paolini and Flavia Bujor--they take themselves far too seriously. This book is meant primarily to just be a funny light read, and it succeeds.
The main character is a wizard named Cade, a wimpy geek who faints at the sight of blood. Through a series of mishaps, he and five other equally unsuited characters wind up being chosen by the gods to get rid of a demigod called Kaos. They're chased from one side of the continent to the other by people who are out to kill them--either for their own personal amusement or because they've been hired by Kaos. Finally, they reach his stronghold, and --well, you'll just have to read the book to find out what happens.
The publishers' blurb compares FT to the Discworld books, but I would say it's more like Piers Anthony's Xanth books. Many random comedy segments are more anachronistic than satire, including things like psychoanalysis (and the inkblot test), personal trainers, IMing, online gaming (if you've ever played Everquest you're going to love this book), and people saying things like "oy gevalt." It has a lot of action, and I thought the fight scenes (which is pretty much three quarters of the book) were well done. It was well paced and gripping -- I pretty much picked it up and didn't put it down again until I reached the last page, despite various obstacles and complications. (For those of you who don't know, it's VERY hard to make a bologna sandwich with one hand.)
The areas in which Resnikoff stumbles a little are when he tries to get serious and take us into the characters' psyches. It's bit awkward, and doesn't completely fit with the humorous tone of the rest of the book. He also makes a couple of young writer gaffes (instead of using said, he gravitates toward 'interesting words' like shrieked, muttered, asked, berated, etc.) However, toward the end of the book, he had already started to improve, and I expect his next few books will just get better and better. There are also some typesetting errors, but it's nothing major and that's more the publisher's problem than his.
All in all, it was a very good satire of the archetypal quest fantasy. I give it a four stars out of five and I urge you all strongly to go out and read it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars next douglas adams Oct. 20 2004
By Matt - Published on Amazon.com
Ned shows the same defiance for convention that Douglas Adams, Terry

Pratchett, and Mark Twain had. Very clever satire of the fantasy genre and the culture that produces them.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny Jan. 9 2005
By D. Dean - Published on Amazon.com
This book was full of good old Dungeons & Dragons humor which I find hillarious. If you're a D&D dork, like me, you'll definately like this book. It's got a good pace, and it's full of classic D&D, AD&D, and Bard's Tale humor.
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